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Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

by andybeal Founding Gooru(October 2007) (rank 8th)
 
 
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Google is no longer just a search engine. With your potential customers, future employers, and members of the media turning to Google for information about your business, Google has become a reputation engine.

In helping clients with their online reputation, I’m consistently asked how they can push out negative content that appears on the first page of Google for a search for their name. Whether they were fined by the SEC, ridiculed by an ex-employee, or investigated by their local newspaper, they share one common goal: get that negative result off of the first page!

Of course, it’s near on impossible to make a negative Google result simply disappear—although there are some black-hat SEOs that claim to have that gift. Instead, your best approach is to provide Googlebot with a healthier diet of web content that shows your reputation in a positive light.

On that note, here are my recommendations for the best web content to fill up the first page of Google results.

1. Get your own web site.

It sounds simply enough, doesn’t it? Unfortunately, you’d be surprised at the number of individuals and companies that haven’t registered their own branded domain name and thrown up a web site. Registering yourcompanyname.com or yourpersonalname.com and adding a basic web site is a sure-fire way to occupy one of the top ten Google listings for your name.

2. Start a blog.

If you love and nurture a blog, it will likely become a great asset in your reputation management arsenal. But the great thing about a blog is that it tends to rank well, even when left un-watered. Blogs are the cactus of online content. Wordpress.com and Blogger.com both provide free blogs and free hosting. Add just a few posts, keep it targeted to your name—that means use it in the blog title, posts etc—add a few links and bake for a few days. It will be on the first page of Google in no time.

3. Add a sub-domain.

If you’ve put a lot of effort into growing your main web site, chances are there’s an opportunity to add a sub-domain. Sub-domains are great. Google considers them as separate from your main site, but they still include your main brand. There are a lot of great reasons to add a sub-domain: careers, corporate info, and product info. Take a look at jobs.marketingpilgrim.com as an example.

4. Create a social networking profile.

MySpace.com profiles can rank well for your personal or company name. When you sign-up, be sure to use your real name—using a nickname won’t help with your Google reputation—and enable the option that lets you pick the URL of your profile. myspace.com/companyname works a whole lot better than myspace.com/12345678.

5. Create your own social network.

If a social networking profile ranks well in Google, how much more so your own social network? Ning.com will let you create your own customized social network. Better yet, you can pay just $5 a month and point your own domain name at it. Take a look at www.marketingpilgrim.tv for an example.

6. Create a business profile.

You should join LinkedIn.com because it’s a great tool for networking with your peers. You should also join LinkedIn as it allows you to talk about yourself, link to your other Google-friendly web content, and customize your profile URL. Wouldn’t you rather your potential employer find your LinkedIn profile on Google, than that run-in you had with your last boss?

7. Share your photos.

Flickr.com is very Google friendly. Upload photos of you, your company logo, your products, etc, and label them using your name. Add some comments to each photo (including your name) and Voila! You’ve just added a dozen pages of content, each labeled with your company name! Be sure to do the same when selecting your profile name for Flickr too.

8. Claim your identity.

Naymz.com is a blessing for those looking to control their Google reputation. It effectively lets you create a profile and then link out to all of your other profiles. Whereas LinkedIn is heavy on the networking-side, Naymz is more of a holding-tank for your brand. Best of all, Google seems to love it!

9. Create your own Wiki.

If you’re facing a Google reputation nightmare, you may be tempted to create a Wikipedia profile for yourself. After all, Wikipedia ranks all over Google, right? Bad move. Not only is it hard to get one approved, but they’re totally unbiased. That DUI incident, you’re trying to cover-up, will likely make its way on to your profile. Not good. Instead create your own wiki and build your profile that way. Wetpaint.com is perfect for this. You can focus it on your personal name, or your company name. The best part is that you get to decide who contributes to it.

10. Get a free page from Google.

I’ve saved the best until last. Ok, I lied. While a free page from Google Page Creator (googlepages.com) isn’t the best web content for managing your Google reputation, there’s something satisfying about having Google help mend your reputation.

So, there you have it. While these shouldn’t be used as a “get out of jail free card”—you should avoid a reputation nightmare to begin with—they’ll at least help you re-build your Google reputation.

 
 

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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

surinderbhatia
Vote:

August 2011

your article is really great, great Information shared by you, and i appreciate your efforts taken for the same.

seo experts

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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

roel
Vote:

February 2010

A brief and concise article, it was a great help for a beginner like me in search engine and online marketing. Thanks andy.

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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

bdunndchi
Vote:

July 2009

That's a great article.  I will definitely be implementing some of these tactics in the very near future.  Thanks very much!

--   Brady Lewis

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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

oysource
Vote:

July 2009

Great article!!

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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

avadhutsawant
Vote:

October 2008

Thanks for your awsome tips.

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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

AllieBaldwin
2.00 (Poor) Vote: Neutral Neutral Neutral Neutral Neutral

December 2007

Andy,

While this list is accurate, it seems it's nothing new. There are several posts like this on the web with "own your this" and "control that" with the same list  of sites/platforms on them.

In this day and age, of course you need to have a blog, myspace was dead in 2006, flickr, linkedin, etc...who on this site isn't aware of these solutions?

Here's the jist of my little mini tirade...what is NEW that we need to be doing? I mean, you are one of the rockstars in Search engines and online marketing. Certainly you have more to add than a list of yesterday's social networking sites...

-Allie
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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

danperry
4.00 (Good) Vote: Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting

December 2007

Very impressive and thorough. Lots to do!
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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

edserv
3.00 (Average) Vote: OK OK OK OK OK

November 2007

The only way you can "push-out" negative comments for serps is to own the top 10 or 20 results, which is probably not possible.  If a negative comment can list for your company (fairly easily- like with a few negative comments,) then your links and seo campaign (especially for your company name) probably really sucks.  You should focus on a deep link campaign.  You should own the first 20 or 30 pages if someone searches for your actual domain or company name.

Good luck!

Edserv

 

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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

palbertus
3.00 (Average) Vote: OK OK OK OK OK

November 2007

Nice article, that look like the social networking model ;-) Another way to add : comments and posts published on websites get indexed into Google and other, and if they get pertinent and viewed by lot of user, they come into the Google index !... and makes you an interesting notoriety for customers, em
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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

Emperor
3.00 (Average) Vote: OK OK OK OK OK

November 2007

These tips are very important and helpful. Thanks for sharing them with us.
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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

Jasper
5.00 (Excellent) Vote: WOW! WOW! WOW! WOW! WOW!

October 2007

Something I will have to work on. Especially with my Non de plume here as Jasper !! I am way off the mark.  Great article.
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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

XavierV
4.00 (Good) Vote: Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting

October 2007

Friendly joke:
11. Avoid PR strategies.
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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

andybeal
4.00 (Good) Vote: Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting

November 2007

Yeah, avoidance is always a good idea. Still, you never know when you'll get blindsided.
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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

liamvictor
4.00 (Good) Vote: Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting

October 2007

Some further suggestions -
Circumvent future problems by buying CompanyNameSucks.com etc.
Get country code TLDs and use them for unique content.
Link to positive articles about your company (especially in and via social media) and promote then up the SERPs.
Create a news aggregator about your company or your niche - edit out any negative articles.
Create news & blogs alerts to see if anything is popping up that you need deal with or can use to boost.
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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

andybeal
4.00 (Good) Vote: Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting

October 2007

Some great tips! Thanks for adding.
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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

tjgillies
3.00 (Average) Vote: OK OK OK OK OK

October 2007

Good resource links!
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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

danlondon
4.00 (Good) Vote: Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting

October 2007

I wish there was a website that let you aggregate all of you posts, info, etc and have it be sent to all of these spots on the web. I feel like I need to bounce around to too many sites to get them all set up with the most recent articles.
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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

TomHuang
1.00 (Very Poor) Vote: Dull Dull Dull Dull Dull

October 2007

good Article,

Above mentioned several websites, I all have the registration, only isdoes not have to use

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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

planhq
4.00 (Good) Vote: Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting

October 2007

Nice simple get a google rep for anyone andy. I've done most of these myself as someone in the web, but this really re enforces the importance of using the names you are trying to promote for everyt track you leave on the web. A very simple 10 point plan that anyone can follow and I'm gong to pass it around, cheers,
Tim.
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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

boldadam
4.00 (Good) Vote: Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting

October 2007

Andy, It's nice to see you and Al in the same place again. :)
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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

Al-Scillitani
5.00 (Excellent) Vote: WOW! WOW! WOW! WOW! WOW!

October 2007

Great info Andy!  Might also be a good idea to set up a google alert http://www.google.com/alerts to help you find what others are saying about you or your company.
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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

andybeal
4.00 (Good) Vote: Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting

October 2007

Yeah, I think another post with tips for monitoring might be in order. ;-)
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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

HIPjobs
1.95 (Poor) Vote: Dull Dull Dull Dull Dull

October 2007

Very useful information, thank you Any for sharing you knowledge and insights. Ron Festine, President Health Information Professionals HIPjobs.net
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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

asun
4.00 (Good) Vote: Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting

October 2007

Very helpful...I shared it with a friend. Thanks!
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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

jackie-shervington
4.00 (Good) Vote: Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting

October 2007

Thanks Andy some great advice. A quick little exercise reveals an interesting outcome. Seems google may help you decide whether to take your husband's name in marriage or not.

Seems like I made the right choice to take my husband's. With my maiden name I'd be competing with a HR director of Ernst & Young but with my new name it is a clean slate - all me.  It does seem so bizarre to see someone with your same name. The web makes the world so small. 

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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

BrianChappell
5.00 (Excellent) Vote: WOW! WOW! WOW! WOW! WOW!

October 2007

#8 is my favorite, along with sites like squidoo, and zoominfo.com. Another two sites to set up profiles on to help you dominate your top 10.
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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

andybeal
5.00 (Excellent) Vote: WOW! WOW! WOW! WOW! WOW!

October 2007

Zoominfo is a great one. Squidoo used to be better, before they got de-valued by Google.
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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

rene-lemerle
4.00 (Good) Vote: Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting

October 2007

great article andy....online reputation management (personal) is definitely an area more people are focusing on. Neil Patel's new blog (www.quicksprout.com) has got some great tips on "branding yourself for success" as he puts it...a worthwhile read.
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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

ClayCook
3.00 (Average) Vote: OK OK OK OK OK

October 2007

great article.

hmm.. looks like i need to get involved more about protecting my name reputation. The first 4-5 results on Google for "Clay Cook" are some singer dude. I have been battling this guy for years!!

I recently bought a domain of my own ClayCook.net and am trying to aggregate all my links off that... but I am cheating a little and using a Google published doc... which I dont think is helping the SEO perspective?
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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

andybeal
4.00 (Good) Vote: Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting

October 2007

Naymz has been around for a while now and I've found it to be the one of the most Google-friendly.
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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

ClayCook
3.00 (Average) Vote: OK OK OK OK OK

October 2007

Andy, by the way. According to google you made your fortune in banking a real estate! ;)

Google search for Andy Beal... Andrew "Andy" Beal (born 1952) is a Dallas, Texas-based businessman. He made his fortune in banking and real estate, and is the founder and chairman of Beal ...
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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

bdunndchi
Vote:

July 2009

Being a poker player, the Texas business man Andy Beal was exactly my first thought when I saw that I had a friend request from Andy Beal.   (He is somewhat of a legend in poker circles if you aren't familiar with him.)

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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

andybeal
3.00 (Average) Vote: OK OK OK OK OK

October 2007

Yeah, I have so much money I just hang out at Gooruze all day.
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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

duncanriley
4.00 (Good) Vote: Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting

October 2007

Quick question: why Namyz over other similar services? I've seen a couple of reputation management sites out there before, some become popular for a short time then sort of fade away.
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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

BrianChappell
4.00 (Good) Vote: Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting

October 2007

I think andy simply mentioned naymz b/c the site is authoritative and is real easy to get to the first page with.

I think zoominfo is my favorite b/c you can get a double indented listing sometimes b/c of how they have their network set up.

What are the others you know of Duncan?

Am I missing some?
  • Linkedin
  • Myspace
  • Squidoo
  • Naymz
  • ZoomInfo
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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

rene-lemerle
4.92 (Excellent) Vote: Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting

October 2007

what are people's thoughts on the likes of:

- wink
- spoke

Spoke gets some traction in Google. Wink not as much...
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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

BrianChappell
4.00 (Good) Vote: Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting

October 2007

Haven't heard of those two. Thanks Rene.
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Re: Own Your Google Reputation with these Ten Suggestions

AdamDavis
4.00 (Good) Vote: Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting

October 2007

Have  you mentioned Ecademy - sure its not the biggest network but the people on their are crazy when it comes to word of mouth marketing and buying stuff from each other.
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