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Is Your Good Name at Risk? Survey of Americans Reveals Importance of Managing Online Reputation


By .ME, November 18, 2015

More than a quarter of Americans, including more than one in three Millennials, now believe that they are more likely to make a first impression online than at a party. That’s one key takeaway from a new survey of Americans conducted by .ME, which examined our complicated relationship with our online reputations. The survey reveals that, while we may understand the profound impact online content can have on our “real lives,” Americans aren’t necessarily taking useful steps to burnish their online reputations.

More than 3 billion people worldwide use the Internet every day. Online content about each of us creates a distinctive digital portrait – one that can be accessed by anyone at any time. The Internet is an increasingly powerful tool for making a first impression – both personally and professionally. As this survey shows, many of us can take a more proactive and mindful approach to online content, and use it to our advantage. – Predrag Lesic, CEO of Domain.ME.

Survey results show that Americans are aware of the power of online information to impact their personal brand – more than half of respondents reported being concerned that information about them online could negatively affect their reputations. And, based on other survey data, they are wise to be wary:

  • Nearly one in four (24 percent) Americans admit to being negatively affected by information about them online – that number is even greater amongst Millennials, nearly half of whom (43 percent) have had online information negatively impact them.
  • 42 percent of Americans surveyed actually have changed their opinion about someone based on content they saw about them online – including 57 percent of Millennials.
  • At some point, you’ve probably been “searched” by someone before they’ve met you. For instance, the survey revealed that it’s common behavior for Americans to conduct a search on someone a friend has mentioned in conversation (23 percent), a health care provider with whom they have an appointment (27 percent) or a first date (14 percent).

Survey results showed, however, that despite the risks, many people do not employ common tactics for protecting or promoting their good names.

  • More than half (53 percent) of respondents surveyed admit that they do not monitor information about themselves on the Internet.
  • 60 percent of Americans have not searched for their name on a search engine (like Google) – of those who do, nearly half (47 percent) only do so once or twice a year.
    • When they do search for online content about themselves, only 1 in 5 find that the information that appears is exactly what they want people to know about them.
  • 79 percent of Americans self-report that they haven’t tried to manage information about themselves online.
    • Only 8 percent have created online content to improve their search results or reputation.
    • Only 6 percent of Americans have purchased a domain address that includes their name.

Survey respondents recognized the advantages of harnessing the power of the Web, and identified personal websites as a potential boon to their reputations:

  • 27 percent of Americans agree that managing their online personal brand could help them achieve personal and professional goals.
  • More than half of Americans (61 percent) agree that a personal website could help manage their reputation online, with 1 in 5 saying it is the tool that could potentially have the greatest positive impact on personal brand.
  • The types of content that could be featured on a personal website including professional work-related achievements (42 percent), awards or honors (35 percent) and volunteer activity (35 percent) were identified by Americans as having the most positive impact on someone’s online reputation or brand.

[INFOGRAPHIC] Online Content Has Real Life Implications

This Domain.ME survey was conducted by Wakefield Research in October 2015 amongst 1,000 nationally representative U.S. adults ages 18 + who regularly use social media and the Internet.


Author:

.ME

100% Internet geek. Committed to sharing important company announcements and helping my .ME fellows leave their mark online. In love with all things social media and always up for a chat. Contact ME at @domainME.

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12 responses to “Is Your Good Name at Risk? Survey of Americans Reveals Importance of Managing Online Reputation”

  1. […] you haven’t, you should You never know what you’re going to find. Domain.ME recently surveyed 1,000 adults who were frequent users of social media and the internet, and what they found was very interesting. […]

  2. […] same .ME study shares many intriguing facts that prove that Americans are profoundly aware of the impact on a […]

  3. […] to study done by Wakefield in 2015 we don’t know what is personally online. The study shares all sorts of fascinating […]

  4. […] friends at Domain.ME recently conducted a survey of 1,000 adults who frequently use social media and the Internet, and the results were kind of […]

  5. […] you search online to find out more about people, you’re not alone.  According to a study by Wakefield Research in October 2015 conducted for Domain.ME, found […]

  6. […] out, I was wrong in thinking that keeping tabs on one’s online reputation is the norm. A recent survey conducted by Domain.ME, a domain name provider that allows anyone to create a unique, safe identity […]

  7. […] online than at a party. Wow, the times they are a changing! But this is the key takeaway from a new survey of Americans conducted by Domain.ME, which examines our complicated relationship with our online […]

  8. […] probably been searched on the Internet by someone before they’ve even met you. For instance, this survey revealed that it’s common behavior for Americans to search someone that a friend has mentioned in […]

  9. […] reputation, only few of us are actively doing anything (proactively) about it. Domain.ME recently conducted a survey of 1,000 adults who frequently use social media and the Internet. Surprisingly, 79 percent of […]

  10. […] Domain.ME recently conducted a survey of 1,000 adults to see if they are concerned about their online identities. Surprisingly, 60% of Americans have never searched for themselves online. This is disconcerting. It is important to know what may pop up when your name is typed into a search engine. What will others see if they type your name into their search bar? What will your friends see? Your children? Or possibly most importantly, what will a potential employer see? You should know the answer to these questions. […]

  11. […] it comes to your personal brand, 27 percent of Americans agree that managing their online reputation could help them achieve personal and professional […]

  12. […] it comes to your personal brand, 27 percent of Americans agree that managing their online reputation could help them achieve personal and professional […]

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