MyWebCareer Blog

Professional Branding 101: What is it and How Can it Help You?

Professional branding. To some, the concept sounds intimidating and unobtainable. To others,it’s a completely foreign subject. And to the rest, it could be the foundation for not only gaining a career, but also streamlining the process.

But, what is professional branding? And why is it so important these days? Well, to start, professional branding is the process of creating a flowing image for yourself through a myriad of tactics, whether it be by blogging, utilizing social media, designing a theme or layout that is repeated on all your online and offline materials, the way you network, your messaging, etc.

At its core, to obtain a solid professional brand, people have to produce a certain image that is unique to them in some way. Plus, with the wide range of candidates out there, it’s more important than ever to have that extra oomph.

For example, say you were a job seeker looking for a career in advertising. Creating a professional brand may begin with creating copy or a biography that is distinctive to your skills. Then, you may stem from this copy and create platforms or a website that is directly connected to the type of image you wish to portray. You may then want to extend this to your business cards, your resume, cover letters, or a portfolio.

In theory, an employer will be able to connect the dots and learn more about who you are as an employee, personally and professionally. Your personal brand can essentially paint the picture your resume alone can’t really do.

Additionally, creating a professional brand isn’t just about creating a fancy layout or coming up with a witty bio section. It’s about following through with your preliminary plans and sticking to it. If that means blogging three times a week during your job search, do it. If you had plans of participating in weekly Twitter chats, don’t slack off.

With this comes the huge problem out there in personal branding: the lax tendency people have at maintaining it once it’s up and rolling. That one Facebook post about the controversial political matter may seem okay, but what happens if a potential employer doesn’t agree, or is even offended? Or what happens if you send out a tweet saying you hate your boss or co-workers? It doesn’t exactly bode well for you if you’re conducting a job search.

So, what’s the solution? Quite simply, don’t give up on it. Your personal brand can do wonders for you once it’s created and on track. You just have to make sure to manage it, cater to it, and adjust as needed. In our congested job market, it could be the key to your next opportunity.

How do you create your professional brand? What makes you stand out in the job hunt?

Posted in Personal Online Brand | Leave a comment

What’s an Online Footprint and How Can it Affect Your Personal Brand?

If you haven’t figured it out already, personal branding is imperative for many professionals, no matter if you’re a job seeker or a highly successful CEO for a Fortune 500 company. Additionally, how you portray yourself online can directly contribute to your personal brand, even if you don’t think you have a lot to worry about. How is this possible? By your online footprint.

Your online footprint is literally the footprint you’ve left behind based on your online  activity. Like an actual footprint, it may leave a mark in whatever you decide to step on, whether you’re arguing politics or promoting your job hunt.

However, unlike a footprint in the sand that’s bound to fade away, your online footprint is much harder to erase. Simply put, the Internet is written in ink. Whatever you do or say can have a large impact on your personal brand because it can always be traced back to you, even if you’ve deleted the issue.

However, by proactively realizing that you need to take care of your online footprint before you land yourself in a mess, you are taking the first step to ensure you’re on the fast track to positive personal branding. What tactics should you actually use though?

●Figure out what kind of brand you want to portray
●Erase all platforms you don’t use
●Defriend, unfollow, and block those that pose a negative risk to your online footprint
●Use MyWebCareer as a personal brand resource to weed out the bad and get suggestions to obtain the good
●Commit yourself to promoting positive content, posting industry related news and comments, and creating a brand that equates a quality image, not a negative one

Sure, it may take a while to reach a level that you’re happy with, particularly if you have some negative content within your personal brand. However, the sooner you take care of your online footprint, the more control you will have over your brand, which may translate into a job, a promotion, or even a recommendation from an influencer.

Remember, the Web has already given you the tools and resources you need to be successful. You just need to use them properly. So, the question is, what are you waiting for?

Is your online footprint affecting your personal brand? How?

Posted in Career Brand | Leave a comment

5 Tactics You Need to Be Using in Today’s Digital Job Search

The job search has changed in the past few years. Nowadays, a lot of our time looking for employment takes place on the Web, from participating in Twitter chats to posting a Facebook status update indicating that we’re looking for a job.

Apart from the obvious tactics, here are a few strategies you need to be using in today’s digital job search to not only ensure that you’re finding the right fit, but also presenting yourself in the best light:

LinkedIn groups. LinkedIn on its own is a great resource for any job seeker. However, are you taking advantage of its other basic features, like groups? Sure, you may be part of your alumni association, or an industry group, but how much do you actually use them?

For the job seeker, LinkedIn groups can be a huge asset. Use this tactic to ask questions, show off your thought leadership, post that you’re looking for a job, or simply state why you’re an asset. Think of it as a form of online networking. The more you use it, the greater the chances you will have at getting noticed.

Quora. As we’ve said in the past, Quora can be a good way to improve your personal brand – and using the platform as a job search resource may go hand-in-hand with your reputation. Quora, which is a question and answer social networking site, can be a way for job seekers to not only show off their knowledge, but also to learn more about their given professions.

Say you’re interested in the legal industry. Job seekers can follow those in the industry, post questions, or even answer questions to create a conversation, which can hopefully lead to a connection.

MyWebCareer. MyWebCareer is a free service that helps you discover, evaluate, and manage your online data, assisting job seekers with their online brand. With almost everything being traceable on the Internet these days, MyWebCareer makes it easy for users to see what their online reputation says about them.

Say you posted something negative about a previous boss. MyWebCareer is able to detect the negative sentiment, as well as give you suggestions on how you should adjust your online data. That way, you’re not stuck with your tail between your legs if an employer questions you about your online brand.

Blogging. Blogging is a fantastic tactic to use if you want to show what kind of candidate you are, especially if you have a blog dedicated to your industry. Think of it as a sort of portfolio. You give an employer a sense of what kind of candidate you are, paired with the fact that you’re obviously knowledgeable about your niche. Make it a point to blog at least a few times a month so you stay up-to-date with recent news and trends.

Google+. Traditional forms of social networking may be bogged down with tons of job seekers. Stand out from the pack and use new platforms like Google+, Google’s answer to social networking. The platform, which launched this past summer, gives job seekers the freedom to not only connect with those in their industry, but also to categorize and track them easily through “Circles”, a feature that places your audience is specific groups or hubs. By categorizing connections into separate Circles, job seekers can direct content toward a specific audience.

What other tactics should job seekers be using in a digital job search?

Posted in Career Brand | Leave a comment

3 Proactive Things Job Seekers Should Do Before Sending Out a Resume

For many job seekers, the path to finding that perfect career can be riddled with discouragement, lack of focus, and even disappointment. Though it can be a lengthy process, it helps to have a plan that will proactively help you before you even send out a resume. Here are three ways to start:

Find out what you really want to do. Before you even start your job search, it’s a good idea to figure out what you want to do. Sure, you may have gotten a degree in advertising or engineering. Maybe you’ve even put in a few years in a profession that you thought you were happy with. However, things can always change and it may be in your best interest to do some “soul searching.” How can you figure it out?

- Write down all of your interests, strengths, weaknesses, and aspirations and determine what type of a career path could fulfill them
- Pin down an industry and attend conferences, organizational meetings, meetups, etc., so that you can get a better feel of the particular field
- Read blogs by thought leaders or those you admire
- Research and visit organizations that align with your values
- Ask questions to those people who have a career path you’d like to emulate

The bottom line here is simple: figure out where your head is beforehand so you can cater your job search accordingly.

Check your online presence with MyWebCareer. Did you know that 89 percent of companies will use social media for recruiting this year? Additionally, employers rejected one out of three candidates based on something they found about them online. So, since it’s pretty much a given that you’re going to be researched online by a potential employer, your online presence needs to be on par with who you say you are. That means there shouldn’t be any questionable pictures, videos, blog posts or Twitter statuses out there.

How can you keep yourself in check? Use MyWebCareer, our free service that helps you discover, evaluate, and manage your online data, which may help your career prospects. With almost everything being traceable on the Internet these days, MyWebCareer makes it easy for users to see what their online reputation says about them. If you do find out that your image is less than stellar, you can fix your content beforehand, instead of risking lost job opportunities because of it.

Create a professional online brand. As with the previous point, having a solid, positive online reputation is vital in our tech-savvy world, particularly in the job hunt. Therefore, creating a solid professional online brand before you send out applications can be the difference between getting a second glance and getting thrown into the “no” pile.

Creating an online brand doesn’t have to be difficult. It just needs to be consistent; not only with the content you produce, but also with the message you want to give off. Consider doing one or more of the following: create a Twitter account, Google+ profile and/or LinkedIn page, create a blog and blog often, promote your industry, and connect with your audience and followers, ask questions to thought leaders through websites like Quora, and clean up your existing online presence. That way, should you be looked up, your image will be professional, show that you actually have an interest in your niche, and may also give an employer the extra nudge to give you a chance.

What else can job seekers do to proactively prepare themselves?

Posted in Career Brand | Leave a comment

How Google+ Can Help You Land a Job

There are numerous online resources out there that can help you find and land jobs — whether they’re proactive measures like MyWebCareer, or networking tools like Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn. And there’s another new social platform that may benefit your job hunt: Google+.

Google+, the newest platform from Google, has risen in popularity over the past month. What makes it different is that it takes all the popular tools from other social networks, like following users, posting statuses, sharing content, and video chatting, and rolls it all into one platform.

How does this translate into the job search? Can this new social network make it easier to land a job? Perhaps. Here are three reasons why:

Circles let you organize your network. One of the major features Google+ offers is Circles; a management capability that lets you put your network into groups based on who they are or what they do. For example, if you’re following several HR professionals for the purpose of networking your job search, you can easily place them in a separate group for monitoring their posts.

How can this help your job search (apart from letting you keep a tab on influencers)? Well, since you’ve customized who your network is, you can also customize how you direct your content. For example, if you wanted to share a link to your portfolio, Circles lets you filter your network by type, allowing you to promote your portfolio to a select few. That way, you probably have a better chance at getting noticed than if you were to just send a cold e-mail to an employer.

Show off your skills and expertise. When conducting a job search on networks like Google+, it’s in your best interest to promote your skills and show off what you’re good at as much as possible. Why? It’s possible that many people you are trying to connect with are complete strangers. That is, they aren’t aware of who you are, your experience, where you want to be in 10 years, etc.

How do you show off your personal brand on Google+? First, be sure to complete your profile in full, making sure to list your experience, work and school history, and even including a subhead that summarizes your brand (you’ll be easily searchable this way). Next, use the platform’s tools to their full potential. Apart from Circles, you could show off your interests and expertise through Sparks, a collection of information based on your interests. For instance, if you’re interested in the tech industry, Sparks recommends news based on the niche. You can then share this news with your audience, following it up with a question or asking for their opinions.

The important thing here is to let other people know not only what you’re good at, but that you’re also keeping informed in a particular industry, whether it be by sharing news, providing your expertise, or updating others on your job hunt.

Be present and speak up. As with other platforms, it’s a good idea to be as active as possible. This means updating your Google+ account regularly, finding new followers, sharing news and blog posts, and updating your profile when necessary. However, particularly for those who are conducting a job search, it’s important to actually speak up about your search. What this means is keeping those in your Circles informed of your progress, where and want you want to do, and directing them to additional online resources. That way, you can be sure your network is continuously informed, which can help you have a better shot at getting noticed – perhaps even keeping you on an influencer’s mind should an opportunity arise.

Have you used Google+ to help speed up your job search?

Posted in Career Brand | Leave a comment

Job Seekers: How MyWebCareer Can Help You Land a Career

Most job seekers realize your online brand and reputation are an integral part of your search, whether you are an experienced professional or a recent graduate ready to tackle the world. So, it goes without saying that being prepared and proactive with your brand — particularly in the job hunt — can make or break your chances at getting hired.

The reasoning behind this is simple: because we are heavily involved in things like social networking and blogging, employers will probably use these tools as a way to paint a clearer picture of the candidate.

Let’s say you are a job seeker fresh out of college. Your social networking presence isn’t exactly stellar, especially since you’ve been prone to posting work-inappropriate Facebook photos and trashing your boss on Twitter, which doesn’t bode well for any job hunter. Although you may have the grades and the experience, most employers don’t want to hire someone that has this sort of image, as it may affect the company’s brand too.

Monitoring your online footprint is becoming increasingly important, particularly for those who want to give off a professional image to employers. Tracking your social networking presence is easy when you use tools like MyWebCareer, a free service that helps you discover, evaluate, and manage your online data, which may help your career prospects. With almost everything being traceable on the Internet these days, MyWebCareer makes it easy for users to see what their online reputation says about them.

So, if you use online networks like LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook, MyWebCareer can (1) evaluate the content of these sites, (2) give you a career score derived from the things you have on your platforms, like your work history and your network and (3) suggest moves you should take based on the elements on your sites.

Additionally, because you have a better idea of the image you are giving off to people (such as employers), you can proactively take care of your online image and brand. Meaning MyWebCareer can actually help you land a job — since influencers will inevitably get a better impression of you, as opposed to someone who takes their online reputation for granted. And all you have to do is analyze your networks. Can it get any easier?

Do you use MyWebCareer? Has it helped you land a job?

Posted in Career Brand, Personal Online Brand | Leave a comment

3 Ways to Use Quora to Increase Your Personal Brand

There are lots of social networking sites out there that can increase your personal brand. From Twitter to Facebook, these social platforms allow their users to display their expertise, network with others, and even connect with powerful contacts.

One of those sites is Quora, a social forum that allows users to ask and answer questions varying in topics from style, to food, to branding. What makes Quora so special is that it lets users to gain and promote knowledge that may not have been readily available. Similarly as to how Twitter can bridge the gap between a powerful company and a consumer, Quora allows people to ask questions to some influential people or regarding some interesting topics, which may not have been possible in the past.

So, how can you use it to increase your personal brand? Here are three suggestions:

Follow topics in your industry. Facebook allows you to “Like” company pages. Twitter lets users follow friends, organizations, and influencers. LinkedIn gives users the power to promote themselves professionally. And Quora? Quora stands out on it’s own since it’s a question and answer hub that caters to whatever you’re interested in. Further, like the other social networks, you can follow things you are interested in, namely topics in your industry.

So, say you are in advertising. You decide to follow topics that range from copywriting to popular advertisements. After some research, you come across someone who wants to know the best software for a design novice. Since you are schooled on this topic, you answer and receive praise for your knowledge. Suddenly, the more questions you answer, the more popular you become. Additionally, since you’ve linked to your blog, website, and company homepage, you gain a new surge of traffic, which can only benefit your brand positively.

Show off your thought leadership. Whether you’re an entry-level job seeker or a senior vice president at a prestigious firm, showing off your skills is important. After all, it could be the difference between landing your dream job or client and gaining nothing.

For example, why not ask insightful questions that pertain to recent industry events, like company shake-ups or new products? You’ll not only show your knowledge of the industry, you’ll show that you can actually think deductively and ask a thought-provoking question. Additionally, you’ll probably start a discussion between other thought leaders, which if you play your cards right, can improve your brand based on how you interact.

Help others. Sometimes, it’s more important to help other people in your industry (and outside of it) than it is to benefit yourself. Think about aiding those who need help, especially if it seems like they need an answer quickly. You’ll not only do them a favor, you’ll improve your personal brand. How? By answering a question for a user, which should probably be backed up by data, articles, or personal experience, you lend a hand to someone who needs it, pressing or not.

If you’re a job seeker and being researched by an influencer or employer, they may notice that you’ve used Quora to help someone else by using your expertise. And it looks even more impressive if you’re answering questions about your industry. After all, if they had to pick between someone who goes out of their way to answer niche-related questions and someone who has no presence at all, the choice is rather simple… right?

Do you use Quora to increase your personal brand? How?

Posted in Career Brand, Personal Online Brand | Leave a comment

Why Your Online Reputation is at Stake

Maintaining your online image these days is vital. After all, how we are perceived could be half the battle. If our image is positive, we could land clients, jobs, promotions, or even step up the corporate ladder. However, if we have a negative image, our entire professional livelihood could go down the drain. Further, the more casually we lead our lives online, the greater the chances we will be judged for the content on our pages, original or not.

Though it may not be your first priority, your online reputation is important for continued success. Here are a few reasons why:

Employers are looking for you online. As a job seeker, it’s even more important to be in tune with your online reputation. Employers are looking for you online. Surprised? Don’t be. In fact, a recent survey of recruiters indicated that 89% are using social media to find candidates. So, this means that although you may not believe that you are being scoped out through your social networks, the likelihood that you are is pretty high.

What can you do to make you sure you are as attractive as possible to employers? Put yourself in the shoes of the recruiter, HR professional or employer and think about catering your platforms to them. For example, you could complete your LinkedIn profile (with particular attention spent on your accomplishments), tweet about events or news in your industry, and try to keep your Facebook activity to mainly positive posts. That way, should you be researched, the employer won’t have to think twice about what kind of candidate you are.

It’s easy to forget to censor what we post. There are times when we get caught up in the social networking phenomenon and forget that employers are watching. Additionally, we don’t always check to see what other people are saying on our pages or delete posts that might reflect poorly on us. It’s important to think about what you or what other people are posting before it’s made completely public.

Say you are an employer looking up a candidate. They look great on paper, have tons of experience, and shining testimonials. However, when you look them up online, you find that they not only post less-than-stellar updates, photos and news, but also have a network that doesn’t think before they post, either. You don’t want this sort of person to be representative of your company, so you move on to the next one.

See how easy it is to get looked over? Spend a few minutes and think before you post just anything on the Web. After all, it could be the difference between getting what you want and getting left behind.

What are we without our reputation? If you haven’t realized by now, your reputation is important, online and off. If someone says something about you to an audience that doesn’t know you they will be most likely believe it, whether it’s truth or not. So, that’s why it’s important to do all that you can to nurture and maintain a good reputation.

An easy way to do this is to use MyWebCareer, a personal branding tool that lets you discover, evaluate, and manage your online data. By evaluating many aspects of your online life, like your social platforms, your networks and how you’re searched, you actually receive a career score that reflects your personal online brand. You can use this information to help your brand grow, which can only help your reputation.

Has your online reputation ever been at stake? How did you resolve the issue and improve it?

Posted in Career Brand, Personal Online Brand | Leave a comment

How to Leverage Your Online Reputation in the Job Search

The job search can be a terrifying and difficult process if you’re not prepared for it. After all, you may send out hundreds of resumes, try to connect with old colleagues to see if they can help, or even resort to applying for jobs not in your industry, all to no avail.

However, if you use the right tools and build a strong network of people, it doesn’t have to be as bad as it seems. Further, leveraging things like your online reputation in the job search may actually help you land a job.

Here are a few tips to help you get started:

Use MyWebCareer

First, you should probably see where your online reputation stands. Use our easy (and free) tool, MyWebCareer, a personal branding tool that lets you discover, evaluate, and manage your online data, which may help you in your career search. How? We evaluate over 150 different aspects of your online footprint, grouped into categories like your online profiles, your network, and your search results. From there, we give you a career score and evaluation, which can help you gauge where you stand.

The best part? The next steps are up to you. You can chose to beef up your platforms, switch up your networks, or even add new tactics to the mix. It’s completely up to you. However, be sure to take note of the areas that need work. That way you can have the best online reputation in your job search.

Blog about your industry

Blogging is a popular way to get your name out there and show you’re a thought leader in your industry. So, if you were an employer, wouldn’t a candidate who takes the time to post information about their niche on a consistent basis impress you? Therefore, it may be a good idea to commit to blogging about your industry a few times per week, whether it’s through words, photos, news, or other means. The more content you put out there, the stronger your online reputation should be, which can only help your brand in the job search.

Use social networking to connect with influencers

Connecting with influencers may be a surefire way to land the career of your dreams. Additionally, connecting with them through your social networks may be even better. Why? Well, they not only get to meet you, but also get to delve deep into your online life, but exploring your blog, seeing who you follow on Twitter, understand your background through LinkedIn, etc. By networking with these people online, you can help them with their own personal projects (since it’s not always about you). This is a great way to show off your skills and talents, further proving that you may be beneficial to a particular organization.

Maintain your online presence

Sure, having an online reputation is important. However, just because you have a good image doesn’t mean it won’t go bad quickly. That’s why it’s important to keep up with things that affect your online reputation. So, while you’re searching for a job, be sure to clean up your networks every so often by maintaining your privacy settings, being consistent with your postings, and promoting industry news, among other things. That way, your online reputation will continue to be fresh and current, which is a huge advantage for your job search and career.

How do you leverage your online reputation in the job search?

Posted in Career Brand, Personal Online Brand | Leave a comment

Networking IRL: Tips to Get You Noticed

We know networking is the key to successful connections. It can lead to job opportunities, personal and professional growth, and even friendships.

Social networks have made it so easy to network with people all over the world-they’ve made some pretty amazing communities and have connected so many people within the same industry. This booming technology has definitely helped us become more aware of the connections that can be made. But it seems to be forgotten that you have a whole slew of potential connections right in your own backyard.

Don’t underestimate the importance of networking in real life. Personally connecting and human interaction accelerates relationship building. Jobs are born through connections and getting to know as many people as you can where you live can give you better chances.

But again, you have to be able to stand out. I know it sounds easier to network online, but polish up those verbal communication skills! Don’t be shy. You need to be able to speak to people and know how to present yourself in any kind of position-start now.

Here are a few things that will help you get noticed:

Find the Right Place

There are tons of organizations for your specific industry, age, interests-anything. Most of them usually have local chapters. Get involved and attend as many seminars or events they hold. Many of these organizations even throw networking mixers for the sole purpose of networking. You’ll be right in the middle of the action. Pick the right one, though. Don’t go to events you don’t know anything about, as you may not have much to talk about.

Make Sure You’re Prepared

This shouldn’t be a surprise. You should always be prepared. Networking with people in real life, you only have one chance to make a great first impression. When you meet someone, the first thing they’re going to ask you is, “What do you do?” Make sure you have an answer or “elevator pitch” ready because you’re going to be asked this many, many times. Be specific. You should be able to tell anyone who asks, without hesitation, what your strengths are, what you’ve done at previous jobs, and what value you bring to an organization. Don’t just spit out your resume. Let the conversation flow and be sure to ask questions of the other person, as well.

Be Genuine

Networking can be hard work, don’t get me wrong. However, most networking meetings – whether one-to-one or in a group – are designed for people to connect. So put yourself out there so others can connect to you. Smile. Laugh. Have fun. Enjoy the opportunity to make some new contacts and potential friends. You are human. Be someone who others will seek to know and like. Trust will follow when you are authentic in your relationships.


You can network until the cows come home, but it’s not going to matter one bit if you don’t follow-up! So many people go out and network, make some great connections, and exchange cards but never touch base with them again. Send connections a quick e-mail the next day. Say you enjoyed meeting them and how you’d like to keep in touch. Sending a simple “nice meeting you” e-mail is effective to begin engagement with. Further explore their networks on social media to see if your networks overlap or if you share connections by looking for your new contacts on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn. It’s an easy way to keep connected and engage with on a continuous basis.

How do make real life networking work for you?

Posted in Career Brand | Leave a comment