By now it should be reasonably clear that the use of social media can either make or break you, but how exactly can you promote YOURSELF and develop a personal online brand in a way that reflects the real you?

Everything that is placed online can, in theory, be passed around and given to anyone who wishes to look at it. Even though you think the email you sent to your colleague complaining about your boss was private, that information is essentially online forever and can easily cause you some trouble if it falls into the wrong hands.

What you post online is what people will know you by. If you constantly post racist remarks or sexist jokes then you will be known to many as the racist or sexist pig. If you post positive comments and show passion and support for causes then people will think of you positively. You have control of what people will think of you, the decision is yours.

There are many ways to develop your brand online but you should start by “owning” it, make sure you have the rights to your own website address or search result i.e if you’re Joe Bloggs, make sure you own to ensure that someone else cannot take control of this and potentially ruin your chance for a reliable reputation. Make sure you manage your linkedin account and other social network accounts because more and more employers are using these to make their mind up about a possible employee. Give yourself a search engine optimization boost and make sure you think before you respond to emails, if you speak in frustration it can easily be the down fall of you. The key seems to be to stay calm and always think what you would like people to think and see of you. If you would judge someone else for a similar comment to what you’re making then maybe it’s not a good idea!

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