Have you ever had a client come to you in a state of desperation, begging for help to remove a blog post that ranks for their business name, and portrays them in less than a positive light?
Or perhaps you had a very contentious break-up with an old flame, and they've since decided to air their beefs with you in a more public forum, and these complaints now appear every time you type your name into Google. Maybe you merely made a mistake one evening after a few too many beverages, but the proof now appears in video form online and as a result has become part of your public resume.
Edit: my friend Glen Allsopp just did a post highlighting 3 women who just took such action … its a good read A New Wave of Reputation Management Issues.
Truth be told … its happens all the time! Its becoming a whole lot more common too with the growth in personal blogging, and people beginning to understand that THEY ARE MEDIA. The service is referred to as Online Reputation Management (ORM).
The reality of the matter is that without legal injunctions and the like, the piece cannot be removed from the search results entirely. In many cases, legal tactics often have the exact opposite effect to that intended, and bring even more attention to the issue. Sure, you could also try Google Bowling it, but you're likely to just further strengthen the post's positioning. So, what can you do?
Here's a relatively simple solution, that will work a large percentage of the time … unless you're dealing with a more knowledgeable individual where more advanced tactics are needed. You need to bump the negative listing down in the search results to progressively lower positions, reducing the likelihood that it will ever be found. Keep in mind, most people never go beyond the 1st page of search results.
This can often be done by building a profile on various sites. The profile name should be the exact term/phrase that the negative piece is ranking for. Here's a list of 50+ such sites you can use:
If all goes well, merely building a profile on some of these will push the negative piece to the second page. If not, you'll have to get more aggressive tactics. I've blogged about some of these Intermediate Tactics in this post How to Bury Negative Online Mentions of You – Intermediate Level Tactics
This is a good start for now though. Try it out with a few, and see how long before your profile appears in the search results for the profile name selected.
In the end … these sites can help protect your reputation from unreasonable ex-partners, angry clients, and others who wish to cause you harm online.