I am approached on a regular basis about the best ways to build your online presence. Of course there are many who would rather not be found online and that is another topic for another day.
The best way to start with your online reputation building starts with a basic foundation.
1. Email: A simple email address, [email protected],live, outlook, yahoo, etc.. you may want to register on a few of the services in the event you need to switch. cost $0
2. Facebook is essential to networking on todays world. you can set you privacy settings to only allow certain people to see, but you should have some basic pieces of info available for those you are trying to share info with. Cost 0$
3. LinkedIn: Essential to professional networking, signup and send out a few emails, also, take advantage of apps like CardMunch now part of LinkedIn that will scan business cards and send out LinkedIn invites. Cost $0 to $75 /month.
4. Domain, setup a yourname.com domain. I have victorcaballero.com which I use for a variety of things. Not in particular a professional site, but a blog about a variety of topics. I use GoDaddy, which charges about $9/year on .com new domains. Register for more than a year and save and not have to worry about renewals for at least a few years. Cost $9/yr
5. Blog and/or website: Once you register your domain, you can point it to your free blog, facebook page, LinkedIn, or you can create a website, which there are many hosting companies that offer packages from as little as a few bucks per month. I recommend separating your domain from your hosting. Cost $6.95/month with BlueHost
6. Smartphone: Use your smartphone and link up your LinkedIn, Facebook, twitter. Cost $0.
7. Events: Attend networking events and write about them on your profiles.
8. Updates: Update your facebook, twitter, blog on a regular basis. Be careful of what you write as it could offend a future customer or employer.
9. Refresh your online profiles on a regular basis.
10. Contact: Invite: share a meal with a old collegue or someone you have not seen in several years, call people on a regular basis. It is amazing to see how people respond when you are calling to say hi, and not asking for anything.
10+: Join professional groups that share like interests, you would be amazed how many groups exist on meetup.com and other sites, and don’t be afraid to think out of the box, by attending gatherings on not only your interests but something that you would not necessary attend.