It won’t be wrong to say that the reputation of a business is very important. As long as a business has a good reputation among existing and potential customers, it will be able to do business peacefully. In today’s age of digital media, it is important for a business to know what its clients are saying about the business. Depending on what customers say, a business should take steps or measures to protect its reputation with Reputation Management Systems.
What is Reputation Management
Reputation management should form an important part of any business. After all, it would allow them to perceive the way clients see them or think about the business. Reputation management is important for businesses that obtain and manage their online reviews. In another sense, reputation management is important for everyone who is in the public eye.
Customer-oriented businesses with an online presence should be concerned about what customers say about their business. Whoever might be the target audience of the business, reputation management forms an important part. A reputation can help a business to acquire new customers.
Importance of Reputation Management
Every day, people review businesses from 1 to 5 ratings, comments, blogs, or social media posts. Hence, whatever a person says about a business becomes valuable for a business as well as for potential clients. After all, bad ratings and reviews can break a business. Similarly, a potential customer might avoid the current business and head to a competitor’s business.
The importance of reputation management is irrefutable. Here are some reasons that would clearly tell why a business should take its reputation seriously. They are:
Better Search Engine Ranking
Online reviews can create a huge impact on SEO. It’s because search engine algorithms know very well that customers place a lot of stress on the online reviews of the company when making a decision. Hence, a business that puts the best effort into dealing with its online reputation gets rewarded with increasing SEO visibility.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) has become one of the key components of an online reputation management strategy. Most websites rely heavily on search engine traffic, so this means optimizing your site for search engines is essential.
The goal of SEO is to increase visibility within search results, and SEO methods include keyword research, page titles, meta tags, internal links, and backlinks. Making sure that your small business applies different SEO efforts can help with your online reputation and overall success.
Increasing Customer Trust & Credibility
Online reviews are not all about pleasing the algorithm. It’s also about the way people identify a brand. With customers trusting online reviews, gaining the trust of customers is essential. Everyone knows that the reputation of a business is crucial for its survival. Once the trust of the customers is gained, the existing customer will speak about the business to others.
A lot of emphasis is placed on online reviews in order to decide whether to trust a brand or not. Good reputation management can easily help a business to gain trust. Hence, positive reviews can lead potential customers to trust the business even more. A good reputation means that the business is more credible than its competitors.
When customers use trust to differentiate a business from competitors, it can effectively convey that the brand is reliable. When a brand is considered to be reliable, it can help to translate sales.
Online reputation management is very important for a business. A study conducted by the Harvard Business School showed that businesses that enjoyed higher ranks enjoyed better revenues around 5-9%.
Having a successful corporate image is a very important marketing tool for a company. a business house might need a lot of time, in order to convince potential customers for using the products or services.
Existing and potential customers would try to learn about a business separation by searching the name on Google. Since potential customers need a better idea about a business, they will look for the available online information and then make a decision. Hence, if potential customers find a negative reputation, they won’t do business. Hence, it would be better for the business house to get rid of its negative reputation, if it has any.
Many people might not be aware of the fact that proper management of the reputation can help a business to improve sales. Improved sales can greatly improve the brand awareness of the business.
It doesn’t matter what type of business one might be running, reputation management is very important. Giving great attention to reputation management can help a business drastically improve its SEO ranks. At the same time, it can help a business gain consumers’ trust.
Business Reputation Management: Things to Keep in Mind
Managing one’s online reputation is essential to conducting business in the twenty-first century. Your online reputation is always under attack by angry customers, rivals, and trolls. It is more crucial than ever to have a sound plan in place to safeguard your reputation and mitigate any damage. Here are a few pointers before you begin your process:
Be transparent with customers
One thing you should never do is lie to your customers. This is a big mistake that many businesses make when they first start out. If anything, you should strive to be as honest and transparent as possible in order to build trust among customers and potential clients. By showing them what your business can offer, you will end up building lasting relationships with these people instead of simply trying to gain their business.
Use social media effectively
Social media marketing isn’t only about posting photos of your products or services. It’s also about connecting with customers and potential clients by creating engaging content and staying active on social networks. With so many different platforms available today, it doesn’t take much effort to find out which ones are most effective for your business.
That said, utilizing social media for your online reputation management strategy is a great way to start. You can use social media to engage with customers, create positive brand impressions, promote your product listings, and much more. There are also many ways to leverage social media for online reputation management, from offering more information about your products to responding to negative comments. Social media is an amazing tool that can help you grow your brand and build long-lasting relationships with your audience.
Protect your customers’ data
When it comes down to the nitty-gritty, every business needs to have a solid data security plan in place. This means protecting customer information like names, phone numbers, addresses, emails, and other sensitive info and keeping it safe from hackers and identity thieves alike. Security from any data loss is very important, especially when it involves customer information. For best practice, keep your data secure by using strong passwords, monitoring network logs, and implementing anti-virus software.
Check Out Simple Good Reputation Tips
It’s not rocket science to build a good reputation, but it does need some attention to detail. That’s because even the most basic details are frequently forgotten. So, here are some low-hanging fruits that can assist your large or small business to achieve new heights swiftly and easily:
- Make Timely Follow-Up and Follow-Through Habits
- Help People Reach Their Own Goals
- Make Others Look Good
- Over Deliver and Under Promise
- Present Yourself the Way You Want to Be Seen
- Always Be Aware of Your Body Language
- Be Consistent
- Act with Integrity
- Get Engaged in the Communities You Support
- Be Likable
How Can I Build My Business Reputation?
You may execute tactics and actions that help third parties form an accurate and pleasant impression of your organization. Keep in mind that your company’s reputation goes well beyond the piece of your brand, services, and goods that you control.
Influencing the decision-makers
It is where having contact with industry influencers may be beneficial. The better your reputation develops, the more likely it is to improve. However, the opposite is also true. The shattered window principle also relates to one’s reputation. When a company’s reputation is tarnished, it can spiral downward, getting exponentially worse.
How Can I Monitor My Business Reputation?
You may use tools for reputation management like Talkwalker, Google Alerts, SEMRush, and others to track your reputation. Unlike reputation management, which focuses on what you want people to write and believe about your firm, reputation monitoring focuses on what people are saying about it. Keeping an eye on your reputation entails keeping a constant eye on the platforms that customers use to talk about your company with other people, as well as the platforms that they use to interact with your organization. This will allow you to make improvements to preserve a positive and truthful picture of your organization and the services you provide.
Why might someone need help managing a digital reputation?
The rise of the internet has given birth to a lot of good things … and a lot of things that are not so good. Now, your good name can end up in the hands of people you can’t identify—and who are in places you may not be able to point to on a map.
If someone says something negative about you or something true but old and obsolete—perhaps it’s that you were fired from your last job—these things can really damage your future. At the same time, your digital reputation also creates significant opportunities. If you aren’t taking advantage of what your reputation could be or hanging your digital shingle the way it deserves to be hung, people aren’t seeing your best foot forward.
Why can’t someone handle their own online reputation?
The best analogy that I can think of is anti-virus software for your computer. There are probably only 25 guys on the planet who can do good anti-virus protection on their own because it requires deep technical expertise. We have dozens of engineers who work on each of our products, which are designed expressly to fix or enhance your digital reputation and profile.
That said, there are certain things that you should do on your own, like having a thoughtful, well-curated LinkedIn profile. And you should have a Twitter handle that is your name, not something like “ILovePizza,” unless your job is in pizza.
What’s the most common problem that you encounter?
People who don’t think they have a problem. They say, “I don’t post photos of myself. Therefore, the internet is fine for me.” That’s actually short-sighted—the internet might be useful for you, but it isn’t working for you.
It’s obvious what’s at stake when a company has bad reviews or a social media meltdown, but what’s at stake for individuals?
The internet can be quite vicious in the sense that someone in your personal or professional life who wants to do damage to you can be very good at it. A former spouse can go after your small business because of a divorce, or former employees can try to destroy your life if you fire them.
But it matters even if you aren’t in the business of selling things. Every life transaction now begins with a search, and even in a good economy, prospective employers will be doing searches on you. The thundering silence you might hear is your best indication that your digital profile isn’t doing the work it should.
Also, we’re increasingly living in a pull economy—and people, employers and customers find you because of the internet. Let’s say that you are a landscape architect. If you’re talking about landscape architecture and you’re identified with it in social media, you have a plausible résumé. But if someone looks you up and finds someone else [with the same name] whose interest is kite surfing, that doesn’t do you any good. On the other hand, if all they can find is that you’re interested in cooking, that’s not necessarily good, either.
So, it’s not always about curing the negative—it’s about accentuating your positive truth and personal branding.
How difficult is it to erase something negative once it’s online?
We don’t seek to erase. There are significant deficiencies in the law in this area—even a lawsuit doesn’t work. But the good news is that if it is off page one of Google, it basically doesn’t exist.
So, what goes into an online makeover?
We make sure that a client’s story—a professionally written biography that’s not purple prose or over the top—shows up and dominates their profile. It could be five or 10 of the top things about them online—either items that we write in consultation with you and your résumé or things that already exist that we push up to the top.
How much of your work is reactive versus proactive?
Many of our clients come to us with a problem. I wish they’d come to us sooner because instead of the $5,000 it takes to cure the issue, it might have cost $200 to prevent it. But that’s not true for most of our clients—most want to be in front of the problem.
How can people keep themselves safe from cyber extortionists who promise to erase undesirable content for a fee and then ask for more money later to keep it offline?
It’s a common problem. There are actually websites that publish information that’s in the public domain—but the definition of the public realm has been stretched. So what was public in 1950, when you’d have to go to the courthouse and befriend the court clerk, is now something you can find while sitting at your computer.
These sites could still be doing something illegal by publishing the info and then charging to unpublish it—and the courts are trying to figure that out. Soon, there will be some legal tools. But, right now, you either have to pay the guy or pay the sheriff to defeat him. And we aim to be the sheriff.
What can people do to safeguard their online reputations?
Set up a Google alert for yourself. Contribute things that are of professional interest, and do it occasionally. You don’t have to tweet every day—doing it a few times a month is a good idea, especially if it is relevant to what you do. Also, don’t post a lot of photos on social media, in general, about your family. Basically, don’t over-share.