What is online reputation and how to manage it
In recent years, the emergence of social networks, blogs, websites and other online content platforms has been massive, so the Internet has become a space where freedom of expression seems to have no limits.
In this new context in which any internet user, regardless of the training and education that he/she possesses, can publish, inform or express, concepts such as digital identity or online reputation have gained a special relevance and have become points of interest and concern growing for both businesses and individuals.
And is that in the world today, where everything is searched on Google, the information that appears about us or our brand in the first pages of the search engine acquires great importance. Therefore, it is advisable that everyone knows and controls, as much as possible, what is published on the network.
What is online reputation?
To understand what online reputation is, we must speak before the concept of digital identity. Both are related notions that can not be explained without each other, although they are different things.
The digital identity is the image we project ourselves through behavior and actions we undertake in the digital world. But let’s not fool ourselves, the actions and behavior that we show outside the online world can also determine our digital identity since we ourselves can later include it in the network. It can also be a third party, such as an article in a media, a publication in our personal profile in a social network or a commentary in an opinion portal, who influences its content, so that, in the end, a digital identity it does not depend on oneself at 100%.
The online reputation, however, can be defined as the perception and appreciation that other users have of us after evaluating precisely our digital identity
In short, we could say that digital identity would be something like the representation of ourselves that exists on the Internet and that we create according to what we do and what we express (both on the network and outside), while online reputation would be the perception that others have about these acts or expressions and, consequently, the prestige that we possess.
Why is it important to have a positive online reputation?
Both companies and individuals are increasingly aware of the importance of having a positive online reputation so that every time they invest more efforts to manage and control it correctly.
In the case of companies or brands, it is obvious that having a good reputation is essential, as it not only favors a greater sale of products or contracting services but also helps to retain customers, improve positioning and consolidate the image branded.
In the case of individuals, it may also be important to control the information about themselves in the network, as it may be decisive in some situations, such as job search, as many companies check the information on the Internet on candidates before hiring them.
What elements determine reputation online?
There are many elements and situations that influence the creation of our online reputation. Some of them depend directly on us and are relatively controllable. On the other hand, there are others that come from third parties and that are beyond our control.
Our profile on social networks, our professional website or our company, our personal blog … are resources that depend on ourselves and that determines to a great extent our online prestige. Posting content and useful information on a regular basis, protecting our privacy, avoiding discussions or conflicts and being oneself are some recommendations that can help us maintain a good image.
However, the Internet is a space of freedom where everyone can comment and comment, regardless of how controlled we have all these spaces, there is always the risk that a third person makes a negative comment or publication.
How to control your reputation online?
It is logical to think that if what determines a person’s online reputation to a greater degree is their own behavior and actions, the first thing we must do to have a good reputation is to manage what we do and express in the network since everything is recorded. For this, there are many resources that can help us better manage our platforms: Hootsuite, Tweetdeck, Buffer, Later … All of them allow us to save time programming content and, in addition, most have statistics and reports to analyze the results of each publication.
But in addition, we can find other platforms that find what others publish about us, such as alerts from Google or Yahoo, Talkwalker, Foodly or Social Mention, one of the increasingly popular social networking monitoring tools, since provides an analysis of the positive or negative nature of what is said about someone in the networks and on the web.
How to solve affects to our online reputation?
In the event that we find any damages that could negatively influence our reputation online, we must know what means we have in our power to solve them. First, we have to analyze what is the problem to know if it is a real crisis of our reputation or is comments or negative reviews punctual. If it is an offensive comment that only seeks to do damage it is better not to answer so as not to make the problem bigger. If we see that we can solve it, we can give an objective and reasoned answer showing a close and sincere attitude. If the comment is well founded it is important to make mistakes and apologize for them, explaining what has happened and the measures that will be taken to resolve the incident and prevent it from happening again.
However, sometimes the affections can cross the line of simple commentary and damage, for example, our right to honor. In these situations, we can always resort to the reporting elements of different platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or Google.
Finally, we can not forget that there are products and professionals who are in charge of managing and controlling your online reputation. In addition, this assistance includes services such as assistance in configuring and updating operating systems (Windows on computers and Android and iOS on tablets or smartphones), handling, installing and configuring computer applications such as Office, email or multimedia utilities , also includes information and assistance of parental control tools and, finally, assistance privacy and security on the Internet.