Brand and Reputation Management

Michael Phelps.

Ok, what was the first thing that came to your mind with that name?  Was is all the Olympic gold medals?  Was it the world records?  Was it the years of hard work and training?  Was it countless endorsement deals?  Or was is a photo of a guy getting caught smoking pot?

Search results in Google for "Michael Phelps"

Search results in Google for "Michael Phelps"

It doesn’t take much to pollute a reputation.  It also doesn’t take much for your reputation in Google to get polluted either.  While all the good stuff still pulls up in Google for Michael Phelps, a person searching on his name has to weed through (no pun intended) numerous listings related to his negative behavior.  His personal brand has been damaged, by his own actions of course, but none the less damaged.

As an example, consider if a high profile employee of your company gets arrested for a DUI or gets caught embezzling money.  Those negative news stories will quickly populate Google results for searches on your company name.  A former disgruntled employee or client decides to start a blog talking about how bad you suck.  That is going to be pollution in your Google search result stream.

How do you combat these negatives so you are always putting your best foot forward in the search results?  Simple.  Create content.  Everywhere you can.  Blogs, social networking profiles, Twitter posts, news releases, article sites, leave comments on other websites, guest posts on other blogs, get interviewed, upload videos, photos, basically, wherever you can put content, do so.  Of course, it needs to be good and useful content and that requires some work, but they don’t use the word “management” in brand and reputation management for nothing.


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