If you’re like the average business owner, your online presence doesn’t reflect the hard-earned reputation you’ve built in real life. There may even be a
dramatic difference between your business’s digital footprint and your own.
“I can’t worry about all that,” you say. “I have a business to run.”
However, your customers aren’t solely interested in your business. They want to know the people that run it. When potential customers look you up online,
are they earning your trust or turning away in frustration? Is your online brand gaining you business or losing it?
Personal branding doesn’t have to be a full time job. Here are 7 tools that make it easy to monitor and improve your brand online:
1. Google Alerts
You cannot afford to miss out on conversations about your brand.
It’s nice to know when you get a shout out, and proactive monitoring could mean the difference between effectively handling a crisis and completely
dropping the ball.
The bottom line is that you must be the first to know when you’re mentioned online.
Craft a Google Alert to stay on top of your mentions or those of your competition. Decide how
often you want to receive the updates, and the rest will handle itself.
Related: All-Knowing Google to Roll Out Geographically Triggered Shopping Alerts
Canva makes digital designing a cinch. Want to build a custom Twitter header, high quality slideshow, a bespoke
Pinterest pin or a beautiful infographic?
The sky's the limit with Canva—and you don’t need any design skills. With so many awesome templates, you can strategize visual elements and colors without
stressing about the quality of the result.
Once you’re happy with a template, you can use it again and again to deliver visual content that your audience can come to expect and enjoy.
Canva is free with the opportunity to buy templates and features for $1 each. I’ve spent a few dollars here and there, but you can develop amazing designs
without spending a cent.
If you’re looking to improve your chances of getting hired or getting leads, then you’ll want to keep an eye on your online presence. BrandYourself’s DIY tool is the one for you.
With BrandYourself’s tool, you can track the movement of your search results over time. You’ll be notified when things change, get tips on how to improve
your online properties to be SEO-friendly and learn what to do to help things rise in search results over time.
The free DIY tool lets you track three online profiles; the $99-per-year subscription gives you unlimited ability to track and improve your search results.
Related: 5 Ways to Distinguish Yourself With a Personal Brand
4. LinkedIn and Twitter notifications
LinkedIn and Twitter are powerful networks with huge opportunities to grow your organic audience and get more eyeballs on your content.
Don’t let those opportunities slip through the cracks. Take a few minutes each day to keep tabs on your notifications.
In five minutes, you can quickly respond to questions, thank people for sharing your content and follow up on potential leads.
Make a special effort to engage with people who like your content. If they took the time to read or comment on your article, you owe them a response. Who
knows? An innocent conversation today could lead to more business tomorrow.
Staying current with your notifications is good, but outstanding brand managers consistently track their Twitter mentions.
With this kind of data, you can revisit your list at any time to see who mentions you the most and interact with the users that deserve your attention. I
like to keep track of this info using IFTTT, an Internet service that enables you to automate actions relating to your online properties.
The service works like an input/output machine. If X happens, then do Y. I made my own IFTTT recipe that adds a row to a Google Spreadsheet every time I’m
mentioned on Twitter.
Use it to find the people who consistently mention you so you can interact with them from time to time. You’ll be pouring fuel on an already crackling
6. Comment alerts
If you publish blog content on your website, then you should keep tabs on your comments.
People might ask you follow-up questions or give you great feedback, but you’d never know if you don’t receive notifications.
A commenter who gets a response is much more likely to interact with your content again in the future. Getting ignored sucks and getting a response feels
It’s easy to get comment alerts. If you use Squarespace, you’ll automatically get notifications about new comments via email.
If you’re using WordPress, go into “Settings,” then “Discussion,” and check “Email me whenever anyone posts a comment.”
Related: 5 Keys to Unlocking the Power of Google Analytics
7. Google Analytics
Have a website? Install Google Analytics right now. With just a few clicks, you can track the most
important growth metrics and compare them to previous months.
Find out how many people are viewing your content and determine which pages are the most popular. See what social profiles refer the most traffic, find out
where in the world your users come from and learn what pages are causing people to bounce.
The amount of insight is incredible. The challenge is to take that data, figure out the key takeaways and determine how you can improve the user
Ryan Erskine is a brand strategist at BrandYourself. A version of this article originally appeared on Entrepreneur.com. Copyright © 2016, Entrepreneur Media, Inc. All rights reserved.