Nowadays, managing your brand’s reputation online has become an essential part of any digital marketing plan, whether it’s a small business or a well-known brand.
Prior to transitioning to the digital era, we all live in now, building an image used to mostly depend on word of mouth or acquaintances. At that time, only larger companies with access to substantial marketing budgets had the ability to become household names by promoting themselves through the help of traditional media, such as television and newspapers.
As such, if you are planning on growing your business or you have just started, it is essential to know what customers are saying about your business and how to respond to their concerns. For this, you need to have a proper understanding of reputation management means.
What is Online Reputation Management?
Online reputation management (ORM) is a practice that refers to the monitoring and improving your online presence. It essentially means finding and assessing what a potential customer, reporter, or partner discovers about your brand or your product/service when they search for it on search engines.
However, ORM is not only about looking for what people are saying about your brand, but also about proactively focusing on the management of a product or brand image as well as controlling and influencing the information flow online, by addressing content which is potentially damaging to it, and using customer feedback to try to solve problems before they damage the brand’s reputation.
Why is it important to manage your Online Reputation?
Because as consumers have migrated to online shopping in place of traditional in-store experiences, the need for positive customer sentiment online has grown exponentially.
How to Manage Online Reputation?
- Assess What Customers are Saying
There are various tools available online, which can be used to identify keywords and hashtags related to your business.
First Page of Search Engines
One of the best ways to make sure that the first page of a search engine is filled with neutral or positive brand information, is by signing up for as many social media channels as possible. In addition to that, backlinks and quality content are also essential towards ranking higher on search engines.
- Positive Content
Pushing the negative content downwards to the next page by either generating user content and pushing it up on the rankings search engines, or highlighting positive content, be it positive reviews about your product, or a happy customer talking about their experience with your brand.
- Being Linked to Reputable Websites
Being affiliated with other reputable websites and organizations will not only help you establish a trustworthy image for your brand, but it will also increase your search engine ranking.
- Carry Yourself Well
While sharing content or commenting on other people’s posts, be consistent and maintain a professional and positive profile.
Social media is a growing part of how businesses position themselves in the digital space. Current customers, potential customers, as well as influencers are all checking out your social presence and determining whether they want to work with you — or not. If you’re not active, engaging and responding on social media, you’re missing out on a huge opportunity to grow your business.
Share content and comment on other people’s posts in a timely manner; maintain consistency as well as a positive and professional profile. Another thing to keep in mind is that transparency about your brand will strengthen trust and credibility. This also increases the confidence in cosumers to make repetitive purchases, and will eventually lead to a loyal customer pool.
As the old saying states, ‘treat others the way you want to be treated.’
Last but not least, consistency and diligence are essential. Like most digital marketing, it is a continuous process and it requires constant upkeep and frequent monitoring to see your results, which in turn will only help your brand in the long-term.