Your name is a huge part of your personal brand. But what happens when you share a name with a notorious criminal or someone
That’s exactly what happened to Pete Kistler, one of the founders of BrandYourself. He had a difficult time finding employment because companies were Googling him only to find results about a criminal with the same name. When he looked for online reputation management solutions to combat this problem, the only options out there were aimed at huge enterprise businesses. So he couldn’t get a quote under $25,000.
BrandYourself Personal Branding Software
BrandYourself co-founder and CEO Patrick Ambron said in a phone interview with Small Business Trends, “We realized that this is something that really matters to individuals too. Whether your online presence represents you fairly or not can have big implications on your career or business opportunities.”
To use the service, you start off by entering your name in the search bar on the company’s website. That will generate a report that details how your online reputation might look to potential employers, clients, partners, investors, or anyone searching for your name or brand online. This part of the process is free. But there’s also a premium subscription option. For $100 per year, the program will offer you action items to help you improve your online reputation. For example, it can identify photos of you drinking, which can sometimes deter potential employers or partners. You can also pay extra to have the team work with you personally to improve your online reputation.
However, when you run a business, it’s not enough just to have no major red flags when people search for your name. You also need to have some positive results that show up in those searches.
Ambron says, “It’s not just about making sure there’s not anything bad out there. If you’re invisible online, that’s a big mistake too. It’s just as important to have good stuff out there. Because if whoever is searching for you doesn’t find anything positive, then they’re going to go with the guy who does have positive stuff out there.”
Another common mistake Ambron noted is when business owners only concentrate on their business’s brand and not on their own personal brand. As a business owner or freelancer, the people you do business with are likely to care just as much about your own personal reputation as they do about your business’s reputation. So whether you use a service like BrandYourself or take steps manually, monitoring and improving your personal brand online is a worthwhile endeavor for every small business owner.