Your assignment (should you choose to accept it) is to google your name. “Why?” you may ask. Great question.
Googling your name is only important if:
- You want someone to hire you
- You want someone to buy from you
- You want people to know accurate details about you
- You want people to trust you and work with you
Depending on what you see in your search engine results (or don’t see), here’s the good news… you can do something about it. Hint, hint.
I used to think googling your name was egotistical. Now I know that it is really good business sense.
Having people I work with google their own name is also an eye-opening exercise for convincing them to get “business social”. Kinda makes us all want to have a little more control over the results that show up.
People are going to google your name. Based on what they see in those search results, they are going to make assumptions and decisions about you. Like it or not, that’s the way things work nowadays.
So besides being aware of what shows up in the search results, you should start proactively controlling what people learn about you online.
Recently I did not hire someone based on their online search results. This particular job applicant had a great resume but after a quick Google search, the application made its way into the recycle bin.
Did the results reveal something horrible? Nope.
It was a few YouTube videos and a Twitter account. While neither revealed anything awful, they indicated that the job candidate was not going to be a good fit. Therefore, application dumped.
Sounds harsh, right?
Of course there is much more to this person than the 6 links that show up on Google. But of those results, 100% of this person’s online “brand” were not in alignment with the type of person I was looking to hire. So Google did us both a favor. It made the decision easy.
The lesson here is, people are going to google your name and they are going to make decisions/assumptions about you based on what they learn from search results.
What shows up in your search results?
Does it reveal who you really are?
The Online Version of You
Do you think your search results would lead someone to want to hire you? Buy from you? Date you? Work with you?
It’s time to take advantage of this opportunity to get your online presence working for you.
Your Goals Should Be:
- Show up in search results for your name – If you don’t show up in the search results at all then you are missing an opportunity to tell people about yourself. If you are in sales, marketing (or at all trying to standout), NOT showing up in the search results also leaves an impression that does not work in your favor.
- Reveal what you want to be known for – This is your opportunity to develop a personal brand. You don’t have to tell people everything about yourself. Just communicate a combination of who you are and how you can help solve someone’s problems. It’s also good to share one off-beat tidbit to be memorable. The point is, put yourself out there. Which brings us to…
- Be yourself
Where to Start
If you’re ready to start building a more accurate online version of you that gets found and works in your favor, here’s where to start.
Start by setting up and filling out your profiles on LinkedIn and Google+. These will be the 2 easiest and best ways to begin building your personal brand and increasing your digital footprint. They are also the most likely ways to immediately show up on page 1 of your search results.
Fill out both profiles thoroughly.
Make it obvious how you help others.
Upload an image.
If you need more help with LinkedIn, here’s a link to the free ebook that I used as a guide when setting up my own LinkedIn profile.
I’m not telling you that you have to use either social media platform on a regular basis. Simply start by filling out both profiles thoroughly. Confession: I actually need to update both of my own profiles but at least I’ve got a decent start. See… Don’t worry about “perfection”.
Bottom line – You want to make it easier for people to find you and get to know a little bit about you. This is your opportunity to give them compelling reasons to hire you, buy from you and work with you.
Let Me Know How it Goes!
Were you surprised by your search results? Are you convinced that the information in your search results could be better? Are your motivated to do something about it now?