Creating a thriving presence online among an array of social media sites can be taxing on your time and resources. There are so many choices out there that it can become confusing when deciding on which platform/s you want to create your profile, and with which communities you want to get involved. It`s best to keep your number of profiles down to two or three. This is because you want to be able to dedicate your focus, valuable resources and opinions to only a few areas, as opposed to spreading yourself across as many sites as possible.
Profile management is all good and well provided that you participate in your chosen communities regularly and keep your profile updated with relevant information. Many people start off with great enthusiasm for the first few weeks and then slowly drift into hibernation, until they can once again dedicate some of their time to participating on their community platform. If this is going to be the case, then you are probably better off not having a profile at all. In order for your profile to work to your benefit, you need to manage it properly and effectively to maximize the advantages of your brand and reputation.
Ann Smarty recently wrote a rather informative article about creating a strategy to manage your online profile. It lists some useful sites such as Facebook, Flickr, LinkedIn, Namyz and Spock, which she has categorized in such a way as to display their individual potential for outbound links and their ranking ability on Google. She also includes some helpful hints on how you can get your profile pages to rank in the Google SERPs by using various forms of effective promotion. However, she states that sites she has recommended, “are all general (no niche-specific ones)” and that she included services designed for creating personal online pages. She didn`t include various social bookmarking sites and social networking sites, which can also be very effective, but serve different purposes.
Online Reputation Management (ORM) is a valuable skill to have. It can be made a whole lot easier by simply being in control of what is said about you online and, ultimately, ensuring that the profiles you have setup are constantly updated and are being used wisely. Don`t be foolish by creating many profiles and then letting them go unattended. It only reflects badly on you when your outdated profile is sending out the wrong message. As the saying goes, “A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush”.