There are numerous benefits of having a good online reputation. These can include increased traffic to your site, more exposure of your company online and ultimately an increase in sales. However maintaining a positive company image is becoming increasingly more difficult.
Many companies have had their hard work counteracted by negative reviews and responses that have saturated the web. Negative word of mouth can be damaging but the internet has opened up a medium for people to air their negative views in a way which can go viral rapidly and to a vast audience. Therefore it is imperative to employ some online brand reputation management to dilute any negativity. Good online reputation can also enable small businesses to achieve awareness that some major companies have, yet it’s important to create the best opportunity in which to do this.
Online brand reputation management essentially involves tracking what is written about a client on the internet and effectively promoting positive and neutral content, while at the same time pushing down those links to negative sites which you don’t want to appear when you’re name is searched for.
Here Are Some Top Tips For Managing Your Reputation Online.
1. First of all you need to be mindful of what’s happening to your brand. Look at which websites encourage reviews for your business and regularly check what is being written through using Google and Yahoo alerts.
2. Respond to reviews promptly, this shows you are actively engaging with your customers. Personalise your response as this shows sincerity and builds up your reputation, yet remain professional as you are representing your company.
3. Is the negative review genuine? If it’s a legitimate error on your company’s behalf publish an apology. If it’s merely a disgruntled ex-employee or someone who sees you as competition, submit a statement which highlights how this is misinformation and make your opinion go viral. You don’t always have control over bad comments but they can be neutralised. Alternatively you could create your own positive reviews as if you were a customer, in order to neutralise the damaging ones.
4. Optimise your social media accounts. If you have Facebook, Linkedin and Twitter interlink them with each other to increase ranking in the search engines. Make sure your social media pages are optimised to appear as a top result in the search engine results when your brand is searched for. This will then move the negative pages down the ranking so they don’t appear above you. Search engines like social network accounts and optimising these is a good way of dominating the rankings with relevant positive content. Post to these sites often as Google recognises and favours fresh content. You could also do this by linking your blogs to your social media site.
5. Make sure your social media link contains the correct URL. Google may index your twitter link containing another variation so it’s important you have the same one that’s used everywhere as you may appear lower down the rankings, as it takes time to index different variations of the same address.
There are many ways to manage your online reputation but each strategy is unique to your company as each brand is ultimately different. However it is vital for any business to employ these strategies to protect and promote themselves online.