Online reputation management (ORM) implies taking control of the online conversation. Its techniques and strategies ensure that people find the right materials when they look for you on the Internet.
When done well, online reputation management creates balance, counteracts misleading trends, and allows you to put your best foot forward.
It is essential to know what people are saying about your brand online. You can do this by monitoring the social media space, using in-house employees to manage your online reputation, or even employing Online Reputation Management (ORM) agencies to do the work for you.
Keeping track of your online reputation is vital because any negative strike on it can have severe consequences for your brand. People can change their perception of a brand in a flash once they hear about any negative comments or reviews about them. Aside from this, you could also uncover some great insights about your business and use it to improve your current efforts to please your customers.
Neil Patel, one of the biggest influencers on the web, according to The Wall Street Journal, explains how you can respond to Negative Online Reviews.
Here are some of the reasons why you should dedicate time to monitor your online reputation and manage yourself or get someone to do so:
With so many online platforms to share information, it can become pretty challenging to keep track of brand mentions. The social media space, especially, has become a platform without control.
Users on various social platforms can write whatever they feel about a brand with no filter. They could go to Facebook, Twitter, Yelp, and post a bad experience they had, and this could have a considerable effect on the search engines.
The day you decided to join different platforms online, you have put your brand out for everyone to see and so you must follow up by managing your reputation online.
To do this, you have to keep track of the comments and conversations about your brand through social listening tools such as Reputology, Google alerts, Yext, Hootsuite, Mention, Buffer, and so many others. Set up these tools for your brand’s name, key executives, and everything related to your brand.
Respond to every comment, reviews, join conversations to ensure you are actively monitoring everything said about your brand, and responding when necessary.
Do not forget to be professional about the way you respond to comments. Remember, people are watching and observing, and you don’t want to be in their bad books.
Online reviews are more or less like word of mouth recommendations. When people search for businesses online, they do it to confirm their credibility. Any negative online review about a brand can have dire consequences on its online and offline reputation.
A negative review can prevent people from making a product or services purchased from any business. This means a company could spend all the time generating leads online, but none will lead to conversion because of the negative things said about them. It is even worse when the brands are not available to manage the damage by responding to the review.
It is, therefore, paramount to ensure that you respond to every form of review about your brand, whether positive or negative. Show your customers and prospects that you care enough to acknowledge their input about your business, and you are open to resolving any difficulties they may have experienced with the products or services of your brand.
Check out review platforms such as Google, Yelp, Glassdoor, Indeed, TripAdvisor, HealthGrades, Avvo, and the rest to find out what people are saying about your business. Responding to negative reviews would help in managing whatever damage it would have caused if ignored. Also, you get to know how you can improve on your brand through reviews.
Seeing that people love positive online reviews, you should also take advantage of this by showing the list of your clients on your website, including their logos and testimonials, to show web visitors how much your clients appreciate your brand.
Ask your customers, clients, and employees to drop reviews about your brand. You can also add links to popular review platforms where there are positive reviews about your brand to build credibility and trust.
Even if you get annoyed at the slightest things in real life, you have to tone it down when dealing with social media. If you want to steer clear of negative reputation, you can learn Social Media Rules for Brands here.
Most businesses add their website to different online directories to build their backlinks. Some of these directories, like Yelp, Perth Map, Trip Advisor, have an excellent reputation, but not all. Some are capable of impacting negatively on your website. There is also the problem of someone listing the same business name as yours, or even buying domain names similar to yours. They could decide to create a website targeted at destroying your online reputation by posting inappropriate contents, and so on.
If you noticed your business had been listed without your permission, you have to take a step to reclaim it or request ownership of the listing. You can do this through Google and Facebook. With Facebook, you can make a report of the violation of your rights on the appropriate page. However, this may take time with a lot of certifications and verifications, but if you start immediately, you could resolve it pretty soon.
Online reviews are the in thing now. It could come from third-party review sites, blogs, social media, or even news websites. People trust (although not always) what other people have to say about brands online. You need to be careful about things you post online as well as monitor what people are saying across social media platforms.
Negative comments can come from unsatisfied customers, disgruntled former employees, or from competitors trying to bring down your brand. And you know how fast “gossip” can spread, and if you are not aware of it and address it immediately, people might begin to see it as the truth.
Social media automation tools have helped lots of online businesses save their time by scheduling and posting contents on various social platforms for them. These tools may be great for your brand, but that is if you are watchful of the kind of contents you post on your account.
Most of them are not authentic or even relevant to the business; they only aim to bit the algorithm. And the truth is that most social users know automated content, and if they keep on spotting such from your account, it could destroy the trust they have in your brand, which will pretty much hurt your online reputation.
If your online reputation management efforts are not enough to restore or protect your brand image, you can request help from a professional.