Online reputation management (ORM) refers to adapting certain practices to ensure people or to be more specific your customers find the right material for your brand, service or organization. A good online reputation is very important to give a positive image to your brand.
Today the internet is the first stop for everyone. They use this medium to browse products or to learn about a new product; and obviously, your credibility comes first for them. So, a hate image or negative comments will not help you grow your business. It’s very crucial you have an unflattering online presence.
“According to a study by the World Economic Forum, on average, more than 25% of a company’s market value is directly attributable to its reputation.”
Do you know?
- 84% of marketers believe that building trust will be the primary focus for marketing efforts in the future.
- 41% of companies that experienced a negative reputation event reported the loss of brand value and revenue. (vendasta)
- 60% of consumers say negative reviews turned them away. (reputation)
Today’s online media is heavily dependent on content and people, the end users are greatly influenced by it. Peer reviews, for instance, are seriously considered. So, online reputation management is not something that could be taken lightly.
You are not dealing with passive audience anymore and nor the website is treated like a static brochure; rather it is used as a medium to connect with customers.
Marketing professionals do advice the same, about creating a platform, where customers can speak about your brand and products. Your responsibility doesn’t end there. You have to make sure the platform is helping your business grow and not the other way round.
Whether you are a social figure or a businessman reputation is everything. A negative image can, no, will shoot down the opportunities to grow and flourish.
I would love to speak about a brand about its tweet fight with a customer. The point here is it doesn’t matter who is at fault, but you have to bow down at certain times just to make sure you are not hurting your online reputation.
Common mistakes that can hurt your Online Reputation
- Being Too Transparent (I call it aggressiveness)
- Not Being Responsive.
- Squabbling with the Reviewer.
- In the first case, let’s say a customer complaint about your service or something you are not having. The person has used a social media platform to express his inconvenience. Instead of being polite or addressing the issue in a smart way, if you give bland answers it would definitely hurt your reputations.
- Dark Horse Café was criticized by a customer for having less number of electrical outlets; the company replied: “we are not running an office business but coffee business”. Genuinely, they may be right on their part, but the words were considered aggressive.
- Coming to the second case, let’s say your customers are giving you negative comments, and not choosing to reply can be a grave mistake. Nestle, one of the popular brands did the same, they choose not to respond to the comments, the result? They had to close their public page on their website.
- Heard this proverb?
‘ONLY DIAMOND CAN CUT DIAMOND’
- But it doesn’t hold well in the online market, with your reputation online you cannot take that approach. Probably, Amy’s Baking Company took the proverb too seriously only to get a negative publicity.
Customers can be irrational and you can neither fight back nor neglect but have to embrace the fact. Now, suppose your brand has suffered a bad reputation, you should not think that issues would die down over time. It would never happen in the online market. An online reputation management service is necessary in such scenarios.
Hiring a good online reputation management service company would be right. Doing so will not reduce your responsibility; you should make sure they are doing it right. Even though you are not a professional but seeking the assistance of one, knowing a little more would help you choose the better one.
Your ORM Campaigns should follow these Principles
- Avoid Clicking on Negative Pages
- ‘Curiosity killed the cat’, the proverb quite fits the explanation that I’m going to give now. You know your website has few negative pages, but if you visit them over and over again just for curiosity or let’s say concern, Google will feel the pages are relevant, and the result, these pages will start climbing up on the search engine result page.
- Avoid Engaging with a Critic
- Verbal fights are more impactful than punching the faces. If you have critics behind your brand/organization try not responding. You don’t want to highlight yourself for bad reasons right?
- Make use of Social Media Platforms
- Social media platform has the ability to influence how people think about your brand. Now, let’s say the primary keyword is directing towards negative reviews, how will you address this issue?
- Pick the right platform for your business and use it as a search engine optimizer. Create content, use the right set of keywords that would help you build your online reputation.
- Give your Privacy Top Priority
- Your personal details can be used as a leverage to damage your online reputation, so keep a check on sites that sell your information. Avoid being on people search sites, because any stranger can easily have access to your personal details and use it against you.
- Know that Search Results are Produced
- Do you know how search results are generated?
- It’s based on the calculated relevancy score. Complex calculations are performed before a relevancy score is generated. The relevancy score depends on three factors, term frequency, inverse frequency, and field length.
- So, it’s all about what people find interesting and search. Search for bad/negative reviews, its relevancy score will be high.
Go Fish Digital Complaint Search, Talkwalker Free Social Search and Alerts, ReviewTrackers, and ReviewPush are some of the best online reputation management tools that can be used to monitor your reputation in real-time. It’s not just tools, but online reputation managers also make use of sentiment analysis, social media monitoring, and public relations outreach for working towards reputation goals.
Having said that, the online reputation management service can be both simple and complex, it completely depends on your requisites.