The Secrets for Maintaining a Positive Digital Reputation
“Digital Reputation” refers to the impression an individual projects of himself/herself on the Internet. The concept of digital reputation is a fairly new one, since it started manifesting with the advent of social media, and it consists in how a person is perceived online based mainly on the content they share or post, but also the friendships they cultivate.
Maintaining a good digital reputation is pretty much what every person strives towards, since feeling appreciated, admired and respected is always nice. Also, a positive digital rep will spare you a good amount of online harassment, insults and death threats.
In this article, we’re going to find out the best way to keep your digital reputation clean, and we’re also going to explore what happens when said reputation gets tarnished: keep reading if this topic piques your interest!
Some tips to improve your Digital Reputation
1) Double-check your posts
When you frequent and post on social media platforms, blogs or any other website you can’t be too careless. Indeed, if you say questionable things – particularly when you have a large enough following – your online image might be in danger. Here’s the first tip I have for you: always double-check your posts before putting them out for the whole web to see.
Make sure that the stuff you post won’t sound offensive, insensitive, ignorant or inappropriate towards anyone, or else your career might be terminated at lightning speed. You have to be aware that your line of thought could be considered as one of the things above. Thus, keep it politically correct in order to avoid antagonizing any social group or community.
Be smart, if you have a controversial statement you’d like to let out, just don’t, especially if you’re someone with a notable online following or a business owner.
2) Always be respectful
Speaking your mind and expressing your true feelings in an honest way is a brave act not many people are capable of. Doing it online – and dealing with the consequences head-on – is the symbol of a true warrior. Now, you can tackle any topic you want, as long as you’re doing it the right way.
Second tip: if you have strong views about a sensitive topic, discuss them in a mature, level-headed, open-minded manner. This will then incite a civil, fruitful conversation with your online acquaintances, a conversation that will help you understand the topic better and will make you acquire a different point of view. The tone you choose to handle a topic usually determines the outcome of the whole discussion. Therefore, don’t act like you want to pick a fight with someone right from the start, because your audience is going to respond to your behavior accordingly, making the conversation go south very quickly.
Remember: disagreeing with someone and having different opinions is completely fine (unless you live in a dictatorship), what matters the most is being respectful towards one another and not resort to overly harsh and unnecessary attacks (mockery, insults, uncalled-for remarks, etc.).
Expressing your personal ideals in a polite, reasonable manner is always the way to go, even when those ideals might seem shi*ty. Who has the authority to decide which ideals are shi*ty and which aren’t, anyway? Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, like it or not. A world without confrontation would only be a boring, sterile fantasy land, after all.
With that said, don’t get me wrong: ideals and opinions that hurt human (or animal) rights in any way should always be condemned.
3) Companies and inclusivity
A business has to be extra careful about maintaining a positive digital reputation on its social media profiles. If a company fails to do so, in fact, it is most likely going to suffer greatly from an economic standpoint, given the risk of the target audience boycotting it.
Over the last few years, businesses have realized that launching marketing campaigns and products that appease certain demographics is the winning tactic when it comes to improving their digital rep. This behavior is usually referred to as becoming “woke“, meaning turning your brand into a more inclusive environment that defies the status quo to a certain extent.
Now, “wokeness” is seen by many people as a cheap, last-minute strategy to gain a wider audience approval, especially if the company in question never gave signs of being that accepting and inclusive in the past. Despite this, there’s no doubt that becoming more inclusive can be very profitable for many businesses: customers tend to gravitate towards brands that specifically cater to their needs, no matter how insincere and opportunistic it all may be.
So, if you’re a business owner, here’s my third tip: take the inclusivity route, think of a more unconventional way of promoting your brand and make it known to the public that, in actuality, you always cared about the well-being of those neglected individuals and communities. It won’t take too long for your business to receive incredible amounts of support, which will positively impact your reputation.
The Cancel Culture phenomenon
Your online experience can get quite tough when everything you say can be interpreted as sexist, racist, homophobic and so on and so forth. Nowadays, interacting with your social media following feels a bit like walking on eggshells, considering that a single misstep can get you labeled as problematic. Or worse, it could get you “cancelled”.
Now, “Cancel Culture” is an expression that gets routinely thrown around the Internet, especially on social media platforms such as Twitter. What does it mean, exactly? Well, in short, “cancelling” refers to the active rejection of a certain online personality. It can be applied to people, as well as companies, organizations, groups of any kind, etc.. When an individual gets cancelled, their online presence is bound to be ostracized by people who deem said individual dangerous for one reason or another.
Why am I talking about this? Well, it’s because getting cancelled is strictly linked to the death of your positive digital reputation. You may never recover after being the target of a cancellation in case the cancellation was prompted by a seriously harmful post you made or behavior you exhibited. Avoid being cancelled at all costs, because re-building a favourable digital rep afterwards might be impossible.
How can you escape cancellation? Well, just follow the tips I gave you earlier!