You have about 7 seconds. You can’t afford to mess this up.

✅ Smile

✅ Give a firm handshake

✅ Make eye contact

✅ Use body language

✅ Dress the part

✅ Speak positively

✅ And when all else fails, just talk about food

Ok. You’ve done this a million times, and if you haven’t, you can take classes, get coaching, or read books on how to do it better. Everyone emphasizes the power of first impressions.

Googling Your Name

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And while it’s true you need to make a good first impression when you meet people IRL, that’s only half the story. Your first impression really starts when somebody Googles your name. What does that mean?

It means you don’t need to worry so much about that spinach stuck in your teeth as you do the results page when someone Googles you.

After reading this article you’ll know how people really judge you on Google and walk away with 4 pieces of actionable advice to improve your Google search appearance.   

Googling Your Name

People have questions.  Google has answers. A lot of them.

Googling Your Name

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We can’t deny the power of Google, so the critical question you need to ask yourself is: What shows up (or doesn’t show up) when my name hits the search engine? The answer to this question can either tarnish your reputation or enhance it. Let’s get the negative part out of the way first.

“Be careful what you post” is the new “wait 30 minutes before going for a swim.”

Googling Your Name

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It’s good old fashion common sense to use caution when sharing information about your life on the internet. AND YET! An entire Online Reputation Management industry exists for the sole purpose of helping people clean up their less-than-flattering digital moments.

If you or even your friends share too much of your life with the digital world, Google will pick up on that. People will find it. And they will judge you for it despite our best intentions. If you’re a human being, you’re conditioned to judge.

Googling Your Name

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Don’t be fooled by “private posts.” They don’t mean anything. Any private post can easily be made public, and what’s private for you could be public for your friends and their entire network.

To get an accurate idea of how you show up in a Google search:

  • Clear your cache, cookies, and web history.  
  • Logout of your web browser and go into incognito mode.
  • Run a search on your name.
  • If anything pops up that you don’t want to be connected to your professional or personal brand, then you’ve got some online reputation management to do. (That’s beyond the scope of this article).

What happens on the internet stays on the internet. There’s no such thing as erasing it. But not everything is damaging. A solid Google search can increase your credibility. How? By adding value to the internet.

If you can answer peoples’ questions online, you’ve earned their trust. You start to build a reputation as an expert in your niche and your credibility goes up. It’s not 1992. The only factor limiting your ability to become an industry expert is you. So how do you add value to the internet and improve your Google results?

4 Ways To Improve Your Google Results Starting Today

 

1. Establish Your Niche

Nothing is outside the realm of possibilities on the internet. Before you start dishing out expertise, take the time to really define your expertise.

  • What do you want to be known for?
  • What do you do and know better than anyone else?
  • What do people compliment you for?
  • What do you value?
  • Who needs to hear your message and expertise?
  • Who is your audience?

Once you’ve clearly established your niche, it’s time to own it.

2. Use Social Media To Your Advantage

Hundreds of different social media platforms exist. You don’t need to be on every one, just the ones where your audience lives. We recommend picking 3-5 social media sites.

Join online groups and forums on these platforms that relate to your niche. We promise these groups will be there if you’ve picked the right social platforms.

Start by listening to the conversations taking place in these online communities.

Participate in the crucial conversations. Be the person answering the tough questions.

Give away your ideas for free. Don’t sell.

You’ll start to earn a social media following by engaging with these communities. It will also keep you up-to-date with topics that your audience cares about. This puts you in a better position for what’s next.

RELATED: How Social Media Agencies Actually Work (And Why You Should Avoid Them)

3. Start Publishing Your Own Content

Creating your own content shows people that you have expertise in your niche AND you want to help others by sharing your wisdom. You’re giving away value.

Googling Your Name

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Reverse engineer your content strategy by asking 2 questions:

  • What are the pressing questions my audience needs answers to?
  • How can I uniquely answer these questions?

If you don’t have a personal website, two phenomenal places to publish your content are on LinkedIn and Medium. Both platforms allow you to write articles and share them directly with your network. They’re super intuitive to navigate, making it easy for people without any experience in web design to create snazzy-looking articles.

RELATED: The Ultimate Playbook To Scale Yourself

4. Focus on Long-Term Reputation Goals

The scope on this last one is long-term. But the strategy starts today. It takes time to build trust with people, and you can’t magically earn credibility overnight. Focusing on your long-term reputation goal allows you to better understand the steps you need to take TODAY (and every day) in order to achieve them.

If you want to improve your reputation according to Google, you need to start adding value to the digital world. You need to do this consistently. Take out your calendar. Create a spreadsheet. Make a plan. Ask for accountability.

By building up an archive of valuable content connected to your name, Google will start to attribute credibility to you. Over time, you’ll establish an online reputation worth Googling.

Start influencing now