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Blog > Social Media > Why You Need Online Reputation Management for Your Professional Life
 March 21, 2022

Why You Need Online Reputation Management for Your Professional Life

Professional women showing shock as she looks at a contact's reputation information on a laptop while sitting at her work office desk.

In today’s age, more professionals than ever find themselves working remotely and connecting with others virtually. Before connecting with others online, do you search for their name? If so, you’re not alone. The majority of professionals are looking up their business and social contacts online before connecting or meeting them remotely.

We decided to commission a third-party survey of 300 professionals to find out where they’re looking and what they’re looking for. The results were surprising!

For the majority; first impressions are online.

51% of respondents admitted looking a contact up online before meeting with them. The leaders of this were the under 45s, with 40% of 25–34-year-olds reporting they ‘always’ looked a contact up online and 41% of 35–44-year-olds reporting they looked a contact up online ‘most of the time’.

Business is now personal. Facebook is checked almost as much as Google.

The main reason driving our respondents’ curiosity was for business, with 49% of respondents citing business reasons to research a new contact online, beyond social at 36%, and home service providers at 30%.

Bar graph showing 48.5% of survey respondents looked up a contact to know more about a new business contact; 36.4% to know more about a new social contact; 29.2% to know more about a service provider.

59% of respondents reported checking Facebook to learn more about their contacts, coming a close second to Google at 60%. LinkedIn was used by a third of respondents, whilst 15% use Instagram and 9% Twitter.

A bar graph showing 60.2% of survey respondents use Google to look up contacts; 58.9% use Facebook; 35.3% use LinkedIn; 15% use Instagram; and 9.4% use Twitter.

Red flags matter almost as much as your background.

Checking a contact’s professional background and resume, was the main reason our respondents were researching their contacts online, cited by 54% of respondents. But the need to check for anything negative was close behind, cited by 48% of respondents. Their search for potential red flags runs deep. A quarter of respondents admitted checking a contact’s photos to learn more about them.

A bar graph showing that 53.7% of survey respondents check a contact for their professional background; 48.2% check for anything negative; 27.1% research a contact to understand their connections & friends; 25.9% check their photos; and 21% check to understand their interests.

So, is time to make sure you’re making the right first impression online?

With IDShield, you can make the right first impression by cleaning up your social media accounts. With our Reputation Management product, included in all IDShield plans, we quickly analyze your Facebook, Instagram and Twitter accounts, find photos and posts that may be harmful to your online persona, and let you delete and archive with our easy-to-use tool. We then continually scan your connected accounts and will alert you when any potentially harmful content has been found.

We also provide Privacy settings walkthroughs and an account scan. All backed by our transparent satisfaction guarantee and support from our expert team. Learn more about Reputation Management and join IDShield today to get started.

Survey details: GCS Online Survey for U.S.-based individuals aged 25-65+. Targeted at Business Media Sites over 18-25. January 2021. 292 Respondents.


IDShield is a product of Pre-Paid Legal Services, Inc. (“PPLSI”) and provides access to identity theft protection and restoration services. IDShield plans are available at individual or family rates. A family plan covers the named member, named member’s spouse or domestic partner and eligible dependent children under the age of 18. For complete terms, coverage, and conditions, please see an identity theft plan. All Licensed Private Investigators are licensed in the state of Oklahoma. An Identity Fraud Protection Plan (“Plan”) is issued through a nationally recognized carrier. IDShield/PPLSI is not an insurance carrier. This covers certain fraud expenses and legal costs as a result of a covered identity fraud event. See a Plan for complete terms, coverage, conditions, limitations, and family members who are eligible under the Plan.


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