What comes to mind when you think of your online presence? For most, it’s all about what you don’t want the hiring manager to find online when you’re going out for that new job. The importance of how you’re represented online doesn’t stop there, though.
What about that hot new guy you just met at that networking event who goes home to do a little more digging on you to figure out if he really wants to ask you out on a date? Or the landlord of that dream apartment you’ve been looking for who wants to learn more about the potential tenant they’re considering leasing their home to? Before you hit “post” consider the impact of what someone can find and learn about you online.
Here are six tips every woman should keep in mind when it comes to managing her online presence.
Make a regular habit of checking in on what’s associated with your name online by Googling yourself every so often. A little hint to get the most accurate search results, in the upper right hand corner, under your Google profile image, you’ll see two boxes—one that looks like the silhouette of a person, the other that looks like a globe. By default, Google gives you personalized results when you search for anything online, based on your internet history. So in order to get the most accurate representation of what other people see when they search for you, make sure you click on the globe once your search results populate.
I’m a firm believer that everyone should own their own personal domain name. Not only does it help you manipulate the results that show up when someone searches your name, it’s also just a good rule of personal branding. Domain names can be purchased for as low as $10 a year from suppliers like Google and GoDaddy. And, these days, pretty much anyone can set up a web page that your personalized URL directs to. For example, I purchased my name www.ZoeZeigler.com on GoDaddy, then I connected it to a personalized web page I created using Wix that includes important information I want people to know about me. Now when I’m Googled, it’s the 2nd search result that shows up for me, right under my LinkedIn profile.
If you’re a MadeWoman, then surely you already have a LinkedIn profile already created. But a shell of a profile alone is not enough. The #1 personal Google search result for the majority of people is their LinkedIn profile. So make the most of it. Include a compelling and descriptive title for your LinkedIn profile. And fill out your profile completely with jobs, summaries and achievements. Make sure you also have an attractive picture, because it will likely end up being one of the first few photos people see of you when they look at your Google Image search results.
Even if it does not show up on your own profile or page, anything other people tag you in can be linked to you and found under your name online as well. Did your friend tag you in that Instagram post the night you all had a little too much fun? Well, don’t be surprised if it pops up in other places around the web as well that are connected to your name.
Facebook broadcasts to all your friends and followers what you like on that platform and other social media platforms. So think twice before you hit the like button. It could come back to haunt you.
Yes, you do need to watch what you say and do online, but that doesn’t mean you have to reduce your online presence to a bland and boring version of who you truly are. At the end of the day, people search and interact with you online in hopes of getting to know the real you a little better. You’re already amazing offline, so managing your online presence is simply about finding smart ways to express how fabulous you are online as well.
Searching for that perfect partner is never easy, and for centuries men and women have looked for love in many unorthodox ways. Women can no longer rely on romantic coffee shop run-ins or any other movie-like scenarios that have falsified our perceptions of love. It’s true, love hits us when we least expect it, but now that we’re living in the 21st century, we can no longer wait for Prince Charming to sweep us off our feet. If people are, to ever find the one person they want to spend the rest of their lives with, it’s time that they become proactive when it comes to dating.
When the term “online dating” was first coined, the public's reaction was somewhat cautious, but this method of looking for love is not as new as you would think. According to an article posted on Return of Kings, this unconventional way of dating has been practiced since the 1700s. Of course, there was no internet back then, but when men struggled with the stigma attached to the inability to find a spouse by the age of 21, bachelors started posting their personal ads in newspapers. Although couples then often lied about the first time they had met, women found themselves curious over this dating strategy, leading them to post their own ads as well.
The internet, obviously, became the modern newspaper, connecting singles from every corner of the world. It took some time for online dating to shed its reputation as a desperate means for companionship, and it’s not surprising that some still look down upon it. However, that doesn’t change the fact that the internet is an incredibly efficient way to meet new people, as explained by Brains.org. The success of social networking websites has clearly shown the human need for belongingness, even in the virtual world. Social features have even began appearing on other online platforms, such as gaming apps, so users can make human connections with fellow players. Gaming Realms, operator of mobile casino pocketfruity.com, revealed that the market for social gaming is expected to grow to $4 billion by 2015, which only goes to show that even though our primary purposes for the internet have nothing to do with dating, we still have the desire to establish human connections via the World Wide Web.
And with the modern advancements in mobile internet, hopeless romantics are now finding it much easier to form relationships. Critically acclaimed dating websites such as Match.com have branched out to mobile apps as new portals for online dating. Laptop Mag lists the best dating mobile apps to date, and given the amount of time we currently spend on our smartphones and tablets, it won’t be long until you potentially meet “the one”.
Some might still attach a stigma to online dating, but that won't matter if you find yourself falling in love with a person you want to spend the rest of your life with.