Reputation management for executives
Social media management for executives planning a career change
Many of my senior executive clients are concerned about their lack of digital presence on the internet and wonder what social media platforms they should be using. The answer to that question may be surprising to you because without an online presence in the digital world today, suspicions may arise about the quality of your technical acumen and business savvy.
In the 21st century job search, your online reputation is a critical success factor because board nominating committees, hiring decision-makers, recruiters and human resources consultants will immediately conduct a Google search to see how active you are, and what they find or don’t find may impact your candidacy—especially if you are considering a move away from your current industry where you are less known.
Top of mind is first to find
Successful C-level executives have been rapidly promoted and repeatedly recruited throughout their careers. This leaves little time to be concerned about self-promotion and career marketing in today’s rapid fire world of integrations, acquisitions, mergers and divestitures.
However, it can make a career transition or board search happen swiftly or drag on for many months.
Creating an online space does not mean that you need to be constantly online, posting content or actively tracking down and interacting with your networks. A simple pull marketing campaign can be highly effective in quietly promoting your value proposition without grandstanding or bragging.
As a corporate executive, the most logical choice for you to stake your ground is the business networking site, LinkedIn. LinkedIn operates the world’s largest professional network on the Internet with more than 400 million members in over 200 countries and territories. (source: https://press.linkedin.com/about-linkedin)
Consider a digital audit that you can do yourself
If you are uncertain about your digital presence on the internet, you can complete your own online audit which takes about 10-15 minutes and can be truly an enlightening effort. Although there has been a great deal written on online identity theft and mistaken identity, it is important to protect your online reputation.
Individuals with your name can damage your reputation when the chair of the nomination committee at the board you’re vying encounters someone else with your name. When he or she heads to LinkedIn to find your photo and your profile is incomplete or non-existent, your application could be set aside or ignored completely.
Susan P. Joyce of jobhunt.org suggests adopting a “clean name” that you use for online purposes exclusively. See her comprehensive article on this topic here.
You can also use an online tool such as the Reach™ Online ID Calculator™ to assess your online presence.
I completed the audit myself in early January and discovered many others with my own name although there was nothing there that caused me any concern. I will make this part of my quarterly audit process. This tool provides four results that range from digitally distinct to digitally disastrous. Luckily I ranked in the digitally distinct category.
What to do if you do not currently have an online presence
Creating a digital footprint today is easy, although it will require some effort. As a corporate executive, your first step should be creating a LinkedIn profile. There is no cost to creating an account if you create it yourself. There are many benefits of using LinkedIn, but the two that are top of mind for an executive like you is (1) a quiet pull career marketing strategy created for your target audiences and (2) the ability to publish articles in your area of expertise. These articles become indexed in search engines and in time, those keywords published in the article will become attached to your name.
Your personal website
You can also create a digital portfolio with your own website and this can be kept quiet, away from search engine indices and for the private viewing of your career suitors. This is a subtle way to demonstrate your savvy while demonstrating your intellectual prowess with content designed for your targeted audience. There are many tools available that you can use to build your own site. Or, you can contact me and I would be happy to discuss.
Even if you are not ready to launch your own website (private or public), consider purchasing the domain name now so that you will have a unique URL reflecting your identity. Domain names can be searched at many places. Here is one you can try here https://www.websavershosting.ca/ (scroll to the middle of the page to search for your own domain name). [waiting for permission to use their site].
Blogging is an excellent way to showcase your expertise and you do not require your own website to do so. In fact, connecting with targeted organizations who host blogs is a great way to leverage their brand power to spread your message.
There dozens and dozens of social media platforms to join. Keep it simple by joining the one platform used by most of your colleagues, decision-makers and clients.
Managing your online reputation is much easier if you are quietly present online and the investment can make or break your future.
What one small step will you make today to take you closer to an online presence that will showcase your impeccable brand?
“It takes many good deeds to build a good reputation, and only one bad one to lose it.” Benjamin Franklin
For a complimentary copy of my 30-page LinkedIn report, contact me today firstname.lastname@example.org.
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