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They Know Everything! Internet Privacy for Online Marketers


It’s simply amazing how easy it is to find out about people online. There’s a whole industry that’s grown up around finding online records and other information. This is really convenient when you want to check up on a potential business partner, but it goes both ways – your customers, clients and associates are learning about you too!

Have you ever googled yourself?

Check out what’s out there about you!

It’s something you should really do. You’ll find all kinds of weird stuff – profiles about you from people finder databases (usually with something wrong like an old address), a cross-country skiing competition you won in college, a comment you posted on an ancient newsgroup 15 years ago, and so on. But you also might find something that gives the wrong impression to your customers.

Protecting Your Good Name

Sometimes you can’t help it if your name is on a website somewhere from a long time ago. But if you’re really good at SEO, you can bury those results with more positive ones. You can do this by creating a profile on every site imaginable and pushing it out of the search results.

For example, let’s say you’ve got some site you don’t want people seeing. Make profiles on social media sites you don’t intend to use or article directories where you’re not posting content. Fill out the profile completely and it will come up first. For example, sites like LinkedIn and Quora are high-traffic sites. Your profile there will be on the first page of the search results.

All you’re really doing is pushing that bad listing further down the search results pages. But you’re making it that much harder for people to see them.

They Know Where You Live

A new privacy problem is created by Google Maps and other location services. Internet marketers are now required by law to put a physical address on their marketing emails and websites. This means that your customers can look you up on a map service and see your actual house.

Is that you yawning and scratching yourself on the lawn? Is that a busted refrigerator in your yard? Are those weeds overgrown? Customers might be looking at your house and saying, ‘That’s not the mansion he said he lived in on his sales page!’

What to Do About It

There are a few ways you can protect your privacy. One is to use a pen name for all of your marketing activities. Lots of writers use pen names and there’s nothing deceptive about it. For authors, it’s all about branding. Horror writer Stephen King, for example, used pen names when he wrote other genres. Everybody knew it was him, but it was all about branding the name.

You can have your home’s listing removed from services like Google Maps. But an even better solution is to create a new business address. You can get a PO Box or a business address from the UPS Store. Again, it’s not deceptive at all. Lots of home-based businesses choose this method because they think it looks unprofessional to list a house’s address as a business address.

Finally, you can prevent all kinds of problems by just being real. Chances are, all your favourite marketers are people you can relate to and their human side is part of their appeal. Be honest and transparent in what you do online, and you’ll have far fewer problems.

Toby Sam Russell

Ok so now please leave a comment, let us know what you think, was the post helpful? Did you get something out of it? Do get involved & let us know.



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