Why Your Digital Presence Matters


Our world has changed dramatically in only a few decades. Organizations and people previously accustomed to face-to-face meetings, pencils, and paper have migrated to predominantly digital communications.

We as a species have struggled to keep up both socially and culturally with all of this change. We need to understand how the digital realm has changed the world, as many of us once knew it, and how those changes affect our online behavior.

Digital presence is everything about you that is available in the digital world, including intended and unintended aspects of your digital life (Thibeault, 2012; Charnock, 2010). Digital presence is your digital fingerprint – left behind every time you click a link or navigate a website.

Digital presence is a combination of three primary broad categories,

  1. Branding, both personal and organizational

  2. Cyber-security

  3. Social intelligence, which is a subset of cyber-security (Thibeault, 2012; Charnock, 2010)

Because your personal and professional lives are intertwined in the digital world, you must ask yourself: What kind of personal or professional brand do I want to establish? Do you want to suffer the consequences of a poor choice of words or an inappropriate photograph posted in your social media account, or do you want to present a professional demeanor? These are just some of the things you need to consider while living and working online.

Creating change was one of the topics discussed at the 2015 Forbes Women’s Summit in New York City. The event hosted 250 of the world’s brightest and most accomplished women, including executives, entrepreneurs, educators, journalists, celebrities, and politicians.

In the above video, you’ll hear what four of these remarkable women — Ramona Pierson, Declara CEO; Melanne Verveer, U.S. Ambassador; Dr. Risa Lavizzo-Mourey, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation CEO; and television news producer Alexandra Gleysteen — said about transforming organizations from within, and what kind of person can lead the charge.


Written by Dr. Alan Swank

Dr. Swank is an Assistant Professor with the Forbes School of Business® at Ashford University.



Charnock, E. (2010). E-habits: What you must do to optimize your professional digital presence (1st (Nook) ed.): McGraw-Hill.

Thibeault, J. (2012). What is digital presence. Retrieved from http://blog.limelight.com/2012/07/what-is-a-digital-presence/

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