So you hear/read/get to know about this person. What do you do when you want to find out more about him/her? Google them, right? No? Ok if your answer is no, then maybe you shouldn’t really read any further. But that is what I do first. And, that’s why building an online profile is extremely important. Your name is going to be Googled too and you want to make a good first impression right? This impression matters a lot when you are on your own (work for yourself) and the only identity you have is online.
So how do you build this identity? The answer is quite simple – google my name. The first link is of my LinkedIn profile and the rest few are my Twitter updates. The first few results pretty accurately point in the direction I want people to go, when they are looking for me. And, this did not happen randomly – I put in some effort too. It’s not too hard really. And you should remember some basics of how Google page rank works. The most basic and exploited trick being the number of links to your name. Now, both LinkedIn and Twitter work in a way which is pretty conducive to Google searches. Both work on the lines of connections and every connection you make increases the number of links to your profile. So, these links usually end up at the top of the search results.
The important thing to remember is what kind of a profile do you want to show up in these results. It goes not just with LinkedIn and Twitter, but most of online communities, forums, social networking sites, etc.
Most of us don’t think much about writing a post or adding info about ourselves on websites. But being a little careful does help. That’s because once online, most information is usually public. And this becomes your face for to people see and form an image in their mind. If you are a professional or a business person and the first result on searching for your name is on a link to a shady website, it’ll do a lot of harm to your web image. Similarly, not being searchable at all is a big problem too. So is having a similar sounding person’s profile showing up before yours. Working on getting the right image across is fairly important. It becomes extremely important to think about what you post on blogging platforms too. And with Twitter. Once online, it is very hard to undo what you’ve written. You don’t need to and shouldn’t have a fake image, all you need to do is to remember that what you write online is adding on to that profile of yours.

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