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To have a successful career in marketing, doing a good job is no longer enough. You need a solid reputation that extends beyond the walls of your company—and you have to be proactive in building it.

One of the best ways to reinforce your reputation is through your online identity.

Your colleagues, managers, employees, customers and recruiters are searching the Web to learn about you. According to a Harris Interactive poll, 23% of professionals admit to Googling people before meeting them. That's an impressive figure that will increase over time.

Don't you think you should be actively managing your online identity?

If you aren't online, do you exist?

Being Googled is the new-millennium version of the reference check. It provides your constituencies with some critical information about you. What they learn from your Google results will color their thoughts about you. Not showing up doesn't bode well.

It's no surprise that professionals are using the Web to learn about potential job candidates, customers and business partners. After all, we use the Web as our primary source of information gathering.

As marketers, we research our target audiences, check out what's happening on our competitors' Web sites, find secondary research, etc., all with the help of our friend Google. And we make judgments from the results that Google provides.

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image of William Arruda

William Arruda is a personal branding pioneer, the founder and CEO of Reach Personal Branding, and the author of Ditch. Dare. Do! 3D Personal Branding for Executives.

Twitter: @williamarruda

LinkedIn: William Arruda