Tell me truthfully: do you ever think about monitoring your online reputation?
I know a lot of you probably hear me say that and think that sort of thing is for Fortune 500 companies, Angelina Jolie, and Presidential hopefuls.
And yes, you would be right.
But I wouldn't be doing my job if I didn't tell you that you're also dead wrong.
That's because monitoring your reputation on the interwebs is not just for the already powerful, rich, and famous.
Please believe me when I tell you that if A) you exist in this world and B) hope to have any sort of successful public presence that brings in an income or other opportunities (I'm talking to you entrepreneurs, business owners, freelancers, bloggers, actors, artists, authors, models, executives, and those who have a career of any kind), you need to know what's being said about you on the internet.
What I'm going to share with you today is an easy, free way to start doing that using Google's alerts capability.
It's not a full-fledged, comprehensive option for catching everything that's said online, but it will get you started. I think you'll find it helpful, and (good news!) it's not going to require any real maintenance from you once you set it up.
(Though I would go back and tweak them every so often as you or your brand develops.)
Here's my step-by-step beginner's guide to monitoring your online reputation with Google Alerts:
When people first hear about Help A Reporter Out (HARO), they freak.
"You mean I can get quoted in The Huffington Post or CNN with no PR firm or marketing budget? Where has this BEEN all my life?!"
Shortly thereafter they usually embark on a binge emailing session, cranking out response after response to the dozens of journalists' queries landing in their inbox (in full -- yet deeply misguided -- expectation that by the next day they'll be #BreakingTheInternet along with Kim Kardashian).
But after about a month of this, a new reality sets in. And it sounds wayyy different than the first:
"Why are none of my responses being published? Why are reporters not contacting me?! Is this HARO thing a scam or what???"
The problem, of course, is not with Help A Reporter Out.
The problem is with the way people approach the reporters.
So with that, here are the top 5 reasons why people are not getting published on HARO.
Whip out your fanciest pen, my friends; it's time to take some PR 101 notes!
It seems that everywhere I go online there are women business owners, entrepreneurs, and business-minded bloggers that are asking the same three questions about their web presence:
"How do I become an influencer?"
"How do I get people to buy from or hire me?"
"How do I look like an expert and not an amateur?"
There are a million and one ways to answer these questions, but what they all boil down to is this: to succeed online you must first earn people's trust.
Without trust you will never be viewed as a legitimate business or a credible authority in your field. You need that impression of legitimacy in order to attract clients and customers, look professional, and earn a reputation as a respectable thought-leader.
But how can you earn trust merely by using the web? If you're anything like me, you're crazy busy and forget half of what you need to do right after you read it. You need something that's not a major undertaking and can be done relatively fast, so let's start with the small changes that make a sizable impact.
Here are 27 (fairly) effortless things you can do right now to earn more credibility online. Pick at least one and get the ball rolling after you read this post!