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13 ways to improve your online reputation

Don't let Facebook & Twitter ruin your career

Do you think before you post on social networking sites? Many of us don't, but its worth bearing in mind that posting risqué content could be damaging your online reputation. We've put together 13 simple steps that can help you improve your reputation, should it need it.

5. A personal website acts as your home base

"People say websites are old hat, but at the end of the day, even if you go on Twitter, you still have to have somewhere to send somebody. I think a website is still good for that," said John Carson, social media consultant at Echo Communications.

Websites are also a good starting point for someone to find you, Carson continued, which can be as simple as an online resume that tells who you are and where you've worked.

6. Optimise search results with a blog

"It's not that hard to manipulate results in search engines to skew them in your favour, if you know how to do it properly," said Carson. Get your own domain name, start a blog, put tags in there, get testimonials from people, ask them to link back to you, and if you want to really expand - post guest articles from top influencers in your field, he suggested.

If you have a blog, it should contain your full bio page, resume, all your recommendations and testimonials and anything else you can think of, suggested Michael O'Connor Clarke, vice-president at Thornley Fallis Communications.

"Even if you're fully and happily and comfortably employed and been in the same job for 20 years, who knows what could happen in this market? Update it now," he said.

7. Gather testimonials & recommendations

Hiring managers who dig behind the search results will try to speak to former colleagues, Carson pointed out. "If you're a hiring manager, you have to look at that person as a brand and see what people are saying about them, if they've recommended them for work, if they've got testimonials. You have to do your homework," he said.

Ask people to write a little one paragraph reference or just a little testimonial, suggested Clarke, who did so for his own blog. "They're still up there as a way of proactively marketing myself...that's something anybody can do. We've all got people in our network," he said.

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NEXT PAGE: Participate in online communities

  1. Don't let your online life ruin your career
  2. Honour transparency and create a personal website
  3. Participate in online communities
  4. Honour transparency and create a personal website

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