The way that consumers perceive your business online is largely up to you. Everything you post online creates a lasting impression of your brand. Yet, not all posts are seen by potential clients. This creates the problem of not only keeping your brand’s online presence positive, but also relevant and visible.
Throughout this article, we’ll explore corporate reputation management, what it means, and how to help yours thrive.
Understanding Online Reputation in Business
Corporate reputation management consists of many facets. These include your own efforts to maximize the positive reception of your brand by consumers, as well as the impact your brand makes to the internet in general.
Much of your brand’s presence online is built by you, previous clients posting reviews, and current followers of your brand sharing posts you make. All these things together provide information which is traceable back to your brand. This information also influences your ranking with search engines like Google, which has the possibility of increasing your online reputation further.
The internet has made it possible for businesses to share their products and services with millions around the globe. In some ways this has increased the potential for profit, in other ways, this has impeded it.
The internet has made it possible for businesses to share their products and services with millions around the globe. In some ways this has increased the potential for profit, in other ways, this has impeded it. Opening the doors to international e-commerce has also opened the doors to hundreds of other competitors operating in the same industry. It has increased saturation in markets worldwide. How can you overcome this market saturation? By making your company stand out among others in your niche. This is where corporate reputation management comes in.
Consumers are smart; they don’t buy from the first brand they see.
There’s research involved:
Has the brand been used by friends and family?
What are previous clients of the brand saying about their experiences?
When performing an online search does is the brand featured in the top three results?
These are all questions consumers ask before selecting a corporation to work with, work for, or buy from. The days of “word of mouth” marketing are over, and the days of Google, Yelp, and Facebook reviews are upon us.
5 Ways to Increase Your Brand’s Online Reputation
1. Take Advantage of Social Media
Social media may have started by sharing information with friends and family, but it’s blossomed into an extremely useful business tool. Everything posted to social media about your business adds to your growing online reputation. The more social media platforms you take part in, the greater your chances of discovery are.
2. Engage with Customers When Possible
It’s not enough to set up a Facebook account and post regularly. The point of social media is to be social, and these interactions pay off. Engaging with followers through social media increases brand relevance and provides a positive vision for future consumers.
3. Make Positive News Noticeable
Every corporation receives bad and good press. What you do with that press is what matters. If your business is mentioned in a news article be sure to share it. If you receive a positive review, post it on your website.
4. Make Yourself an Authority
Consumers want to buy from the best. They don’t want to work with companies who don’t know what they’re talking about. A great way to distinguish yourself as a leader in your industry is by having well-known figures within your field address you as such; being mentioned in a news article about your field, appearing as a guest blogger on the website of a prominent leader in your industry, or simply being mentioned on social media by an influencer all place your brand in a positive light.
5. Face Negative Reviews Head-on
The worst thing a company can do is play ostrich when it comes to negative reviews. Avoiding these comments increases the appearance of guilt and doesn’t do much to relieve consumer tension. Use positive, professional language to handle any negative experience a client has had. Consumers who see you react to negativity with positivity, or at the very least, empathy, will think more highly of you than those who believe you’re ignoring the problem.
It’s never too early to begin reputation management. In fact, putting a plan in place as early as a brand’s conception can improve future success. If you’re not sure where to get started, there are corporate reputation management companies to help get you set up and point you in the right direction.
The days of “word of mouth” marketing are over, and the days of Google, Yelp, and Facebook reviews are upon us.