Karen’s PR & Social Media Blog

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May 1, 2012

Controlling not only online reputation, but search results as well: BrandYourself allows users to do exactly this

Online reputation management is a key factor for many professionals and businesses presently in 2012.  More employers are looking online to see what is posted about prospective employees and others are looking online to evaluate the overall personality and character of individuals they know and are associated with.  In many ways, managing your online reputation is becoming more integrated with our daily lives.  There are various ways to approach this – from creating your own hub of information with a personal website or have a presence across social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, and YouTube to name a few.  In 2012, personal branding and online reputation management has become one of our primary roles and duties as individuals in business and society.

One of the strategies I tell my students to do is to not only make sure to Google your name on a regular basis, but also check out sites like Social Mention or Samepoint to evaluate what is posted on you in terms of updates, comments, pictures, and videos.  However, there is another site that allows you to see who has searched for you on Google or Bing. The new site is called Brand Yourself, and Mashable just did a post related to its features and how it works. The site allows you to decide what are links that are positive, negative, and neutral.  This is determined by search engine optimization (SEO) and can provide you with some IP addresses, but not all of them.  Check out this video from CNET on the new start up.

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There are of course some ways to handle this proactively – the easiest way is to have one set of manners. If you do not want to have everyone in the world to know it, then do not post it online.  If you wouldn’t feel comfortable having your parents see a post, update, or photo – again, don’t post it.  However, with these new sites dedicated to look at who has been searching for you online through these various search engines, the issue of privacy again comes up.  We have to take responsibility for our search engine optimization results – not only do we need to have a platform to serve as a hub for our information, but we have to take action and control the search results people are using to come to our websites, blogs, and other official social media platforms.  PR professionals can take action to this not only for their clients, but also for themselves as professionals.  This is also a site for students to be familiar with as they get ready for their first internship, job, or graduate school application.

The Internet is not a private place – and as technology advances – the more this becomes apparent.  Personally, I feel that you have to treat the Internet and social media sites like you would in person.  Only difference is that Google and other search engines and sites now remember what you have said and this stays online forever.

Hope you all are having a great day.

Best Wishes,


Infographics: Helpful or hurtful for PR professionals?

Filed under: Communications,Public Relations,social media — Karen @ 12:24 pm

There has been a consistent discussion among public relations professionals – both in academia and in practice – about the use of info graphics.  Infographics are graphic representations that showcase data, evidence, and information in a visual manner. Many businesses have created these on various topics such as Mashable, JESS3, and Edelman to name a few.  There are also some sites like Visual.ly and Cool Inforgraphics that serve as a good database with various info graphics on a range of topics, including those focusing on PR related issues. In addition, these info graphics can not only be graphics, but also be presented in animation.

I am actually a fan of infographics that are not only visually appealing, but also have strong data and insights to share with the rest of the community.  In addition, there are always the issue of looking at the sources when it comes to the data – what are the references being used?  Who is being cited?  How credible is the information being presented?  All of these points are things to consider for public relations professionals to determine if they will be using these in their campaigns, press releases, or showcase them to their clients.  Here is a good blog post from Journalistics that makes the case for how info graphics can be beneficial for public relations.

So, what are some things to keep in mind when it comes to using info graphics in PR?  Here are a few things to take into consideration:

  • Make sure the info graphic has a purpose:  Sound information and concise facts are best to present to audiences.
  • Be creative in use of graphics and format:  The key is to present the information in a unique yet appealing manner.
  • Educate self on graphic design techniques related to info graphics:  We have to be trained to be one with graphic design when it comes to our brochures, fliers, and even websites.  We have to understand the principles related to info graphics as well.

In summary, we are becoming a visual community and society, so we have to continue to be aware of these visual trends and features. However, there is going to be a time and place for using info graphics – so we have to evaluate each situation, client, and project to determine if these will be appropriate to use.

Hope you all are having a great day!

Best Wishes,



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