When you are building your brand and your business online, one of the most important elements to monitor is your online reputation. If you know anything about online reputation management, you know, essentially, that it’s the process of monitoring and managing what people are saying about you and your company.
Online, as in real life, word of mouth is one of the most potent methods for spreading good news (and bad).
While there are many paid services to help you monitor your online reputation, there are several free tools you can (and should be!) using to keep track of your mentions on the web.
The first is using Google alerts. You can set these up at http://www.google.com/alerts. You would set these up for your name, your business name, and any key terms or initiatives you might also be monitoring. Using this free service enables you to be notified whenever there is a new Google listing for any of your keyword terms. You can set how often you should be notified (I have mine set to daily), and you can set up as many alerts as you would like. It’s wise to use your desired keyword term in quotes (as in “red cars” rather than red cars), as this increases the specificity of your alerts. Google alerts are a good first line listening tool to monitor your online reputation.
A second tool you can use to monitor your online reputation is a site such as Keotag, which is located at http://www.keotag.com. When you visit this site, you’ll be able to enter a keyword to research. You could start with your name, for instance. When you submit your query, you’ll be given a list of sites you’d like to search. When you select a site, you’ll be given a set of listings where your keyword terms appear. Sometimes Keotag returns results that the other tools miss, so I like to have it in my arsenal.
A third tool you can use to monitor your online reputation is Addictomatic, which is located at http://www.addictomatic.com. This site is great because it pulls from many content sources, and you can get a one page listing of your keyword as it appears on various sites. You can remove or switch around the order of results. What I like to do with this site is set up some custom keyword searches and then bookmark them in my browser. This way, I can easily return, at a glance, whenever I’d like to be updated on new information on my keyword.
I’ll be covering other tools in future blog posts, but these three will get you started. If you don’t have these set up and running for your name, business, and main business terms, set these up right away.
It’s always good to know what people are talking about- especially if it’s you!