Personal Branding, Google and Facebook

Seth Godin posts a reminder that when you apply for jobs people will tend to search for your name on Google. Fortunately, this site is listed second on the first page of Google (as at 29th February 2009), but I’m well aware of how quickly it changes. The “Adrian Johnson” whose site is above mine is an illustrator for children’s books.

I’m also reminded of a conversation I’ve had with my wife about job applications – how recruiters also search on Facebook for your profile to see who your friends are and to find any embarrasing photos of you. I’ve not had any photos posted on Facebook I wish were not there, so I’m ok, but this may be helped by the recent announcement by Facebook over the control of data the users have.

Google is different to Facebook. Sites loose rankings on Google, but they are still more likely to appear. With Facebook you could delete your account (like my wife did), but you cannot delete information from Google. The only way to remove yourself from Google is to replace the listings with alternative listings (through blog posts or other sites). As Seth Godin points out, “Google never forgets”.

Adrian