The internet can be a bully. It can be your best friend one day and your mortal enemy the next.
Anything from a high school school achievement to a business complaint, your footy team photo to a survey you took years ago – can all be found in a single Google search. A little scary isn’t it?
Therefore, building, maintaining and creating your profile online should be a number one priority when shaping and building your brand online.
This can seem like a daunting task for even the most innovative of online developers. But don’t worry. Here are five easy steps to follow to ensure that your background and achievements shine when subjected to the glare of an online search.
Step One – Correctly Index Your Website
Your website is your address on the web, whether it’s an online brochure or a full retail shop. It is the first impression that someone will get about your business (and, therefore, you).
And we all know that first impressions do count!
So, you need to ensure each page of your site is correctly titled, has relevant and targeted information in the first paragraph and metatags or keywords added to the source code.
Also, as the business owner or key stakeholder you should have a correct, well worded and interesting profile page too, so that it will come up when people ‘Google’ your name.
Step Two – Start A Blog
Whether you share news about your day-to-day business or personal experiences you have, creating your own blog is a great tool towards online brand awareness.
Keep your blog posts short relevant and entertaining – always consider what your target audience wants, and then deliver it. Before posting ask yourself, ‘Would they care about this story?’
Step Three – Create Your Online Network
The power of each individual link is that it opens a new door to your business. And social networks link you with the contacts of your contacts, and their contacts and so on. When set up correctly, you can build a network in the thousands in no time at all.
It is vital that you take the time to create your profile for each platform carefully and be sure to provide links to your business website and your blog.
Step Four – What’s All The Twitter About?
One of the fastest growing networks is Twitter, the online short text forum where you add your ‘Tweets’ about what’s going on in your world.
From pop stars to politicians, movie actors to business moguls, Twitter offers the opportunity to share your personality.
You can choose a style, theme or topic for your Twitter profile and then attract followers to you as you add ‘Tweets’ from your laptop, email or even mobile phone.
But like your blog, the ‘Tweets’ should not be just about what interest you. You have to always keep in mind what your readers want and what interests them.
Step Five – Spread The Love
As you build up your content on your website and your blog you will start to create a library of articles, stories and interesting tips that can easily be shared with others.
Try and get them published in someone else’s newsletter or posted on their blog (even Anthill has a submission form for aspiring bloggers). Make them available as a download.
The more you have to offer, the more credibility you will reap over the web. One story in a leading online publication can help push you to the front page of Google on a specific topic search for you, your business or area of expertise.
In five steps, you’ll have put the internet ‘bully’ back in his box!
Tony Eades is the creative director for DesignShop, Australia’s fastest growing online design and print solution provider. He is a business marketing expert, with more than 20 years experience in design, advertising and client media campaigns.
Image by debaird™