What is Online Reputation Management? An Updated Definition

In its early days—the mid-1990s—online reputation management (ORM) focused on repairing malicious content: anonymous, negative online commentary posted on Internet forums and in the comments sections accompanying blogs and media platforms.

Today it is easier to remove such information. But not always. When that is the case, it can be displaced from one page to the next, and many more, through a combination of strategies. As a result, ORM is often described as “pushing down” or “suppressing” negative content.)

Taking Ownership of Your Digital Profile is Essential Today

With the much larger role the Internet has assumed in our lives and industry, ORM now encompasses taking ownership of your digital footprint—all of the publicly available information about you and your organization online that you have control over, either directly or indirectly. That includes claiming your name on all key social media platforms, whether you use them or not. The goal is to own as much of that digital real estate as you can…especially on the first page of a Google search in your name.

Online reputation management lessens the prominence of and counterbalances negative and false content. It also ensures an accurate and powerful image of you is presented online (ideally, in the top results of a Google search of your name). Done effectively, online reputation management is a proactive tool that reinforces your credibility and influence in supporting the issues important to you. Bottom line: the more control you have over your name online, the less the world does.

If you want to take an active role in determining how others perceive you—rather than leaving it up to others— online reputation management is a must. Our article, The Essentials: Online Reputation Management FAQs, provides an in-depth overview of what you need to know.

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