5 Social Media Tips to Bolster Your Online Reputation
We live in an era where we are all consistently under the microscope. As long as you utilize social media, you are leaving a digital footprint and creating an online identity. Though the idea of constantly being monitored may make some users feel uneasy, as if big brother is watching, social media plays a powerful role in establishing relationships. Whether you’re preparing to meet with the employer of your dreams or just hoping to acquire more leads, your online reputation is critical to establishing these connections. In a social environment, the importance of this cannot be stressed enough. For this reason, we have curated 5 tips to help boost your online reputation while on social media:
A Picture Says 1,000 Words
We are a visual and judgmental society. We love captivating imagery, but also naturally tie those images to preconceived notions. We feel that we can learn a lot about people by the type of personal photography that they use to express themselves online. Numerous photos of an individual’s cat on their social media page create an assumption that they are somewhat introverted in nature. On the flipside, if an individual has multiple pictures where they’re constantly out at bars and appear intoxicated, one might assume that the individual in question is sloppy and careless.
Though none of these assumptions may actually be true, it is imperative to detoxify your social media profiles of any and all images that could damage your online reputation.
For instance, if you’re an aspiring personal injury lawyer, we do not recommend posting pictures on Instagram of yourself pulling wheelies on the highway on your brand new motorcycle. Instead, consider professional headshots and make sure to monitor not only the pictures that you upload, but also the photos in which you are tagged.
Blogging and Sharing: The One, Two Punch of Social Media
If you haven’t already, consider Tumblr.com as an excellent platform to easily manage your future or current blog. You may ask, “why blogging?” Well, there is no better way to communicate your expertise than to begin blogging. It allows you to showcase your superior writing ability and knowledge on the latest trends within your industry, all while simultaneously improving your online reputation (provided your blog’s content is well researched and articulated properly).
Once you have created your blog, it is time to get the word out. When users check Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn, they expect to see new and fresh content. Though each medium is different, users visit each platform expecting to find articles within their feeds that are relevant to their interests. Use this to your advantage, and post links to your most recent blog across all of your social media accounts inviting your audience to read your blog and discuss the subject matter with you socially.
Creating quality, well-written content and disseminating it across your active social media platforms will showcase your strong writing ability, superior knowledge on your industry and resourcefulness.
Don’t Disregard the Disgruntled
If you are a business owner, it is imperative to monitor your company’s presence on Yelp.com. Many entrepreneurs create pages for their business on Yelp in hopes of promoting their business. However, very few actually monitor the feedback they receive on their page and respond to rectify the customer’s negative experience.
It is not uncommon for a disgruntled user to visit the business’ page and post a barrage of feedback designed to damage the online reputation of the page owner. The longer that negative comments remain unanswered on your page, the more damage is caused to your online reputation. Leaving negative comments on your page states that you are an apathetic business owner without regard to the opinions of your customers. This isn’t exactly the best way to improve your online reputation or maintain a strong customer base.
While we certainty wouldn’t recommend fighting back in order to valiantly defend your honor, you must join the conversation and do it quickly. Respond to each comment individually and apply a personal touch to show that you care about earning the individual’s business. The majority of users posting negative comments can be quickly subdued by replying with an empathetic and timely response.
It is also important to remember that all posts on your page will display to the entire online community. For this reason, best practice is to keep public facing negative conversations short and quickly migrate the conversation to private email or platform message correspondence. This will reduce the risk of the disgruntled user posting another aggressive comment in response to your initial response.
Speak the Native Language
Social media is very much like the geographical world. Different groups of people have migrated to different parts of the world for many different reasons. The end result is a world of different cultures and languages, each with their own style and flair.
Think of the Internet as planet Earth and each social platform a country on our planet. You hopefully wouldn’t travel to Mongolia with hopes of surfing and speaking Spanish with the locals. Likewise, you wouldn’t log onto LinkedIn and post artsy pictures of the food you’re about to eat; it would ruin your credibility.
If you hope to increase your online reputation, spend time on each platform and just absorb the style of conversation and learn how to communicate naturally in that space. It is important to recognize the communication style that is used and what type of content is popular. Not every platform is the right fit for every brand or business. Learn what is right for you, and own the space.
Be Part of the Conversation
Social media is designed to bring us closer together and foster new relationships. If you see an industry related tweet from a potential client or from your dream workplace, be bold and interact with them. Often times the original curator of the social content is seeking just that, to start a conversation. At that point, you have an opportunity to express yourself intellectually and begin collaborating.
By initiating conversations on social media with well thought out and educated responses, you will be able to make a lasting impression on a perspective employer, client or customer before you even have the chance to meet them.
At the end of the day, you must view social media just as you would a face-to-face conversation. It is important to dress for success, so make sure your online imagery is up to par. Be interesting, engaging and share what you know. Just like in a face-to-face conversation, make sure you are bringing something of value to the table, and articulate yourself well. Make sure to regard each individual the way you would like to be regarded. Use the right tone of voice and appropriate vernacular in every conversation. Finally, be social and join the conversation.