Surviving in today’s business environment requires having a solid online presence. Surprisingly we meet lots of business owners who remain steadfastly stuck in their off-line ways presenting their competitors with a 24 carat opportunity to steal potential customers by attacking their on-line reviews. if you don’t know what i’m talking about Google any business or just look at their Facebook page – anyone (absolutely anyone) can leave a 1-5* review if they’re a customer or not!
The reputation world is a bit of a cesspit of smoke & mirrors where competitors regularly pretend to be a customers, write fake reviews and undermine the business’ reputation.
Naturally we advocate every business needs an online presence so that immediately opens them up to the review cowboys. The majority of companies who ask our help in order to fix their reputation problem are those who for one reason or another neglected their brand reputation in the first place. Lesson 1 – you should always take your brand reputation seriously even when you do not see any negative comments or reviews about your business online and social media!
It underlines the truth that in the digital world you need a constant marketing campaign. That way if somebody tries to take advantage of your reputation, you are there to protect yourself
Why do you need a clear online reputation management strategy?
You have to give your targeted audience a reason to care and buy from you.
We advocate the following…
Accurate Representation of Your Business: Explain what your business is all about and why customers should choose you over your competitor
Quality Customer Service: Create support channels both on social media and your website. Avoid using chatbots on Facebook and your website. You lose potential customers. Remember! It’s all about human to human interaction.
Cyber Security: Make sure your client data is safe. Attracting trust is the most important aspect in an online and offline business.
- In online reputation management (ORM) you should use your company’s unique strategies to monitor, identify and influence your online credibility and reputation.
- Through an effective online reputation, you will be able to increase your brand awareness.
- Don’t wait to use online reputation management when your reputation is in trouble. However if you are in that position we we have tools and services that can help you with your reputation crisis.
The benefits of online reputation management are:
– Building trust and credibility: If your company suffers from people’s confidence towards your business it will be difficult to turn their negative to positive again. This is why you must build your credibility by continuously running PR and social media campaigns.
– Branding: Build brand awareness online and get investors to invest on your business. Having professional SEO and social media marketing team is the foundation for a successful business.
– Boost sales: Having lots of 5* reviews naturally helps sales
Another aspect of having a reputable brand is that it supports any recruitment you may be considering. Prospective employees are most likely research your company and brand before they interview. If you know what your competitors, clients, and employees are talking about online, it can make a big difference in hiring the right people.
How to deal with an online reputation crisis?
There are three types of people who play with your company’s reputation:
- Unhappy Customers: Make sure to address your customers’ problems as soon as possible. This group of people are usually very vocal and will let your sales team and all their contacts (and their contact’s contacts) know why they are so unhappy. If they get ignored they take it to the search engines and review sites. They can write extremely nasty and negative reviews about your business especially on completely un-moderated review sites. The majority of companies have these reviews and the best way to turn unhappy customers to happy ones is to fix their problem as soon as it happens and even give them something to become happy (and therefore write about)
- Competitors: Every business has competitors keen to bad-mouth, its just human nature sadly. Make sure you turn their negativity to your advantage. Customers generally don’t like to see negative sentiments – they see it for what it is so pick up anything a competitor is saying about you and if it’s wrong, challenge them. There is an old saying ‘keep friends close and enemies closer’, turn their unhealthy competition to healthy collaboration
- Social Media Bullies: sometimes you or your colleagues, staff at your company may inadvertently make comments which may attract unwanted social media bullies and as a result hurt your business’ reputation. It happens! A set of unrelated events could have unwanted consequences if you’re the business that sold the car with an un-diagnosed fault or the cruise ticket on the cruise-ship that got food poisoning. Limit your social media communication and be very careful not to discuss matters that may attract bullies and defamers.. If you don’t have one, write a policy for your staff and make sure you check your employee’s channels especially if your company is named as their employer!
So if you are unsure about how to handle anything less than a 5* reputation then call us today. We know how to get you the on-line reputation your business deserves…
At Goodman we’re experts in online reputation management (ORM). Contact us today for your business’ needs 0845 225 5555
We are a London UK based full service agency that specialises in driving immediate, sustainable and, above all, profitable responses for our clients. We work with corporates and SMEs as well as small businesses and start-ups – whatever your advertising requirements – we’ll get it done!