Since releasing the online brand assessment, nearly one thousand people have completed it. Which is pretty awesome.
I will soon be publishing a post on the results of the assessment overall but I can tell you the average score is 33. Which is not bad. This means most of the assessment takers, will be found when people are looking for you.
But. The question still remains, what will you be found for?
Many of you have indicated one of the reasons you took the assessment is because you are hoping to find a new job or just to be found by a recruiter.
Others would like to start a side business.
Whichever camp you fall into, the question remains. When you are discovered online by a recruiter, a hiring manager or potential customer, does your online profile tell that person you are the answer to their problem?
You are their solution.
Think about yourself. When you go online to search for something, the majority of the time, what you are actually doing, is looking for a solution to a problem. Recruiters and hiring managers are no different.
And it doesn’t matter if you have all of the credentials or degrees offered in your given field, if you don’t come across as the solution to a company’s or customer’s problem, they are moving on.
MY SCORE SHOULD BE HIGHER BECAUSE…
Occasionally, I receive emails from assessment takers expressing issues with the assessment. Mostly, it’s because they feel they are experts in their field already and thus should have a higher score.
Like this email, I received last week.
“I retired as an Advisor world's largest conglomerate. I am a highly qualified Engineer, a Photographer and a Master Mechanic. I have done numerous such assessments in my 37-year career when I joined industry as a blue eyed Executive Engineer Trainee after graduating from University with distinction – Cambridge & Mysore. For this, I should have received a higher score so I just found your assessment as pure & cheap junk”
This person went on to explain that because of their numerous credentials, they should have scored higher. I understand this sentiment but frankly, it’s flawed logic. It also shows a lack of understanding of what the assessment is looking for.
So we’re on the same page, the assessment looks at your presence online, holistically. It reviews all of your online presence, not just whether or not you appear in one of the top ten slots.
The assessment doesn’t care if you believe you are an expert or if you have degrees, certifications and may have taken assessments previously.
None of these things mean you will show up in search in a manner that best serves you, your career or your business.
In fact, the question that comes to my mind when I read through this person’s response is, do you want to show up online as a qualified engineer, a photographer or a master mechanic?
You may very well be all three but if you want to be known as an expert in one of them, then that’s what we should find about you on page one.
This is the question you need to be asking yourself every time you post something online because credentials, degrees, and certifications only matter if other people know you have them and they are relevant to your expertise.
When I googled this person, I found their LinkedIn profile at the bottom of page one as a suggested result.
Why suggested? Because as it happens this person shares their name with a famous actor who claims nine of the top ten results.
BUT I HAVE A UNIQUE NAME…
If you have a unique name, you already have an advantage that others do not. Especially over those who share names with famous people.
In many cases, your unique name alone will allow you to show up in search, but again you have to ask are you showing up in the manner that paints the best picture of who you are and the problems you solve.
I received this email recently.
“I should have scored way higher than you gave me. If you Google my name you get about three pages of just me. There is nobody else in the entire world with my name. My score should have been much higher based on the google search.
Anyone googling my name will find me and only me with my LinkedIn profile being number one link on the search page (I closed my Facebook account). Try it! Google my name and you'll see it's just me! My name in and of itself is a unique branding tool! Thank you again!“
I agree. Your unique name can provide you with a unique branding tool but again, what do you want to be branded as?
Taking this person’s challenge, I did a Google search.
They are correct, they show up in search, however, not in the way they think. My search results for this person did not have a LinkedIn profile as the number one result.
The reason why is because when this person Googled themselves, they did not log out of their browser, clear the cache or open an incognito window. Google knew this and returned results tailored to this person.
This is why when I Googled this person, I got different results. In fact, I got what would be considered “the” real results because I had never searched for this person before, ever.
And while it is also true, this person’s name was in every first-page result, six of the ten results were for 411.com, spokeo.com, whitepages.com, poems.com, zoominfo.com and intelius.com.
Needless to say, this does not paint a cohesive picture of this person as a solution to a potential employer, recruiter or customer’s problems.
As a side note, this person also told me they were looking for a new job.
Take time this week to really consider how you want to show up in search results. Once you think you know, Google yourself from someone else’s computer.
Ask yourself the following questions.
1 – Do the results align with your expectations?
2 – Do they indicate to others how you help solve their problems?
Remember, you need to tell your story online. It doesn’t matter if you're an employee, and employer or a side-hustler, you need to tell your career story.
After all, it’s your brand and I promise you, if you don’t tell your story, Google will.
If you have questions about your assessment results, feel free to send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or if you would like your question featured on an upcoming episode of the podcast, leave me a voice mail message at ryanrhoten.com/message.
I’d love to hear from you.