What Goes Into Online Reputation Management?

What Goes Into Online Reputation Management?

Just what is online reputation management? The term is pretty vague — it sounds like it could refer to literally defending your reputation online, trying to massage public perception through actions on the part of your company or more automated measures like deleting bad press. Find out what goes into online reputation management and why it’s essential to building a brand that lasts.
If someone was saying something bad about your company, wouldn’t you try and fix the problem? The same can be said about your online reputation management. Learn what goes into it and what you need to know.

Why Online Reputation Management?

We’re now in a time when the conversation between brands and customers goes both ways and is happening round the clock. It’s even spawned a profitable video genre dedicated to unboxings, hauls and reviews. 

YOUR BUSINESS HAVING PROBLEMS WITH ITS ONLINE REPUTATION? SEE HOW WE CAN HELP!

The veil has been lifted on how companies operate, with employees speaking directly to customers about products and addressing criticism on Twitter. Point blank, the conversation around your product is happening whether you participate or not - so better to join in and control the narrative.

Social Media Monitoring

Customers often seek recommendations via word of mouth and social media is taking up that mantle. It can also become a nexus of negative press and grassroots campaigns against a certain brand. It makes sense, then, that online reputation management often takes the form of social media monitoring. 

Your social media manager will start to feel like an octopus if she has to find every brand mention (including those without direct tagging), relevant hashtag, mention of your competitors by hand. Some of this work will be manual, but you’ll also want to offload a certain amount to AI. 

You’ve probably heard of celebrities setting alerts for their own name. Similarly, you can use a program like Google Alerts or Hootsuite to track what they’re saying about your company and when any press related to your field comes up. If you’re a data nerd, Digimind offers gorgeous visualizations.

Customer Reviews

Offering reviews can feel like giving up a lot of control. It means devoting a certain amount of ad space to negative words about your brand. However, we’re in a time when transparency is celebrated and you’ll actually be embraced by the public if you acknowledge constructive feedback.  

You just need to strike the right balance in tone. It’s essential to respond quickly but to exercise restraint. Be polite and if necessary, contrite. Respond to positive reviews, too! Customers will appreciate the little nod to them.

Removing Negative Content

The main threats to your reputation are negative reviews and negative press. Today reviews are no longer limited to Yelp and Google, now taking place across social media as people capture their experiences with your brand. If a particularly juicy comment or tweet gets picked up by the media, it can snowball into something much bigger.

As we touched on earlier, some criticism is inevitable and even welcome. But if someone has published defamatory statements about you, it may become necessary to wipe it from Internet history. For anything actually out of bounds you want to be swift in taking action, whether that means deleting fallacious reviews or hate sites. (There are even services available that will systematically remove negative search results about you.) You just want to be sure your response is proportionate: taking a heavy-handed approach can simply feed the negative perception loop. 

Most social media sites have Terms of Service that prohibit harassment and bullying. If possible, you may want to report the user in question. In extreme cases this can fall under the jurisdiction of the law. As always, seek legal counsel if you’re unsure. 

Raising Your Public Profile

Reputation management isn’t just about putting out fires. As a merchant you’re concerned on two fronts: getting and maintaining positive exposure, and getting exposure period. Your customer has more options than ever, each one louder and brighter than the last. It’s easy to get drowned out by all the noise and chatter. In this sense ORM is about raising your visibility through well-researched, well-placed keywords

Manage Your Reputation Today

Don’t be the last to the table! Leveraging best-in-class social insights, lead the conversation around your brand to increase visibility, minimize negativity and cultivate a positive image.