These days, it’s getting more difficult to manage our online identities, reputation, and interactions.
Aside from the rising importance of crowd-sourced media, the field of reputation management for both business and personal users centers around Google. Client priorities and the resulting SEO strategies focus upon optimizing search results and page rankings.
Reputation management and listening in to what’s being said online in your industry are staple items for today’s marketer. I’ve been a huge fan of tools like Google Alerts and Google Reader for years now and at last, Google added something called “Me on the Web” as an attempt to make it easier to monitor your identity on the web.
“Me on the Web also provides links to resources offering information on how to control what third-party information is posted about you on the web,”Andreas Tuerk, Google Project Manager, on the Google Public Policy Blog. “These include common tips like reaching out to the webmaster of a site to ask for the content to be taken down, or publishing additional information on your own to help make less relevant websites appear farther down in search results.”
Nothing earthshaking here, as it appears to simply be a tighter integration of alerts with your Profile, but it might make setting up alerts easier for some. The best thing to come from it is that it may help people find their Google Dashboard, get a snapshot of everything Google is tracking and understand and edit a few privacy settings.
It also appears that this is another way for Google to place emphasis on creating and using Profile pages – something that likely plays heavily in their plans for a building out more efforts for local business to be found. If this is well received by the individual, this is Google’s way of being able to open the door to handing a business the ability to handle their own online identity and reputation. This gives companies an up for turning up in branded search results based off of their own choosing outside of what you can do from an SEO/PPC/SEM perspective.
Though given a lot of buzz for an individual consumer use, I believe that Me on the Web is something to watch out for in the future. Google and other companies will start leaning towards helping companies manage in their online identities in the way that they would like.