Here we are, Reputation Management Part 2! Using blogs to build your reputation.
Yesterday’s post was about using LinkedIn to begin building an online reputation. Here is the link in case you missed it: Building Your Reputation Management Part 1: LinkedIn
I just want to remind you that using the right key words and phrases and using them consistently across various platforms and mediums is one a good best-practice when developing your reputation. (This includes your name and photo too.) We all want to be known for something. The other important message is to be sure to demonstrate your best qualities and skills on line. Be nice, be sincere, be helpful, be generous. This is all part of your brand/reputation as well. Finally, and perhaps most importantly, blogs were designed to be interactive. Try develop relationships with people by asking for comments. Interact with your readers, that is what makes a blog different from a website.
If you haven’t thought about starting a blog, maybe now is the time. I remember when I first started, I had so many questions and there were so many options I felt overwhelmed. Let’s keep this simple and uncomplicated. These are just my recommendations based on my experience and a pretty basic level of technological savvy. I had to self-teach myself a lot but it has been worth every minute I’ve invested.
To Blog Yourself
You may be thinking you don’t have the stamina, ideas, or even desire to start a blog by yourself. Don’t rule out blogging just yet. Ask yourself these questions before you decide one way or another:
- Can I commit to writing once a week (or at least once a month)?
- What area of expertise do I want to showcase?
- Who is my audience (who would benefit from reading what I have to say)
These are particularly good resources:
The Starter Blog: How to really get started Blogging from Remarkablogger
Blogging for Beginners and 10 Blog Traffic Tips from Entrepreneurs Journey (Yaro Starak)
68 Ways to Make Blogging Easier and Better from For Bloggers By Blogger (Danny Brown)
Business Blogging Articles to Get You Started from Denise Wakeman’s Better Business Blog
Choosing Your Weapon (I mean platform)
- WordPress.com (free)
- WordPress.org (you have to pay to host it on a server)
- Typepad (free)
- Blogger (free)
WordPress is the more popular of the platforms for blogging. I have found it has the newest and greatest bells and whistles (themes, plugins and widgets).The others all have their own following and pros and cons.
I would suggest you ask around and pick a platform that someone you know is using. This will make it so much easier for you to get your questions asked and help for your problems.
A Lighter Load
Are you thinking that you aren’t ready to learn code, master SEO and all the other stuff? Maybe either of these sharing platforms would be an easier solution. They offer much of the same benefit of building a reputation but with a bit less work. Often referred to a microblogging sites, they allow you to write posts and share links, photos etc.
Nope, Not Ready to Jump off That Bridge (yet)
Perhaps this is sounding like too much of a commitment. Fine, start commenting on blogs in your industry. You will be able to contribute to the conversation and begin building relationships, learning and acquiring digital terrain.
So where do you find good blogs to comment on?
- Be professional at all times
- Check grammar, punctuation, spelling before submitting comments
- Join in on the conversation by reading the other comments and contributing, adding, politely disagreeing or supporting
- Add value to the post by adding your thoughts on the topic/issue
- Be sure to keep it relevant to your areas of expertise
- Be generous and gracious and polite
- Use your real name/the name by which you want to be found by
Log in/Sign in
Commenting on blogs usually requires that you sign in. The choices you have vary depending on the blog. You want to use the same login/profile consistently. You can also sign in with other accounts such as your Facebook, Twitter or Google. Discus is another popular sign in tool bloggers use.
Then other times you can use your name, email and URL/website. If you don’t have a website, use your LinkedIn URL (I think this will work, let me know if it doesn’t).
Blog Comments: Part of Your Online Executive Brand Communication Plan from Executive Career Brand (Meg Guiseppi)
Maybe you don’t feel ready to commit to hosting your own blog. If you find a blog you like, you might be able to become a guest blogger. Many times blogs are looking for people to contribute. See if there is a “guest blogging policy” on their site and follow those instructions. Reach out and introduce yourself but it might be a good idea to interact on the blog via comments first to build name recognition. If you go this route, you should have samples of your work and be a strong writer or a new angle.
Here are some parting thoughts and I am sorry this is longer than I intended it to be.
- Watch and listen.
- See what others are doing
- Experiment with new ideas
- Have fun
- Build a community
- Make your blog interactive, ask for comments, feedback, ideas, other solutions
And Part 3 in this series of reputation management is going to talk about Twitter!