The Two Types of Negative Content Impacting Online Reputation Management
Every business in the process of managing its online reputation will have to deal with two types of negative content. Due to the different origins and severity of these types, differing approaches have to be taken.
The first type of negative content usually appears on social media and can be dealt with in a traditional PR manner. Negative content generated by consumers or that appeared in the wake of a social media interaction should be addressed as soon as possible. The best strategy is to move any conversation off of social media and try to steer it into a private communication channel like e-mail, direct messages or phone. This will help contain any issues quickly and won’t attract any additional attention from other followers on social media.
The other type of negative content has much more severe consequences. This type can spin off into a reputation crisis and are sometimes called online reputation management (ORM) bombs. These can have a powerful impact on a company’s reputation because they live in search engine results. When someone will be searching for your brand, these negative results will spring all over the search results pages.
ORM bombs come in the following forms:
- Negative Reviews: These reviews can appear on high authority websites like Yelp, Yahoo or Google. Check how your customers feel about your products, as their reviews on third party platforms will give you a relatively objective view of the customers’ perspective. Negative content affects sales, and simply responding to these reviews may not be enough. That is especially true if negative reviews start appearing on more obscure websites that will produce defamatory content that might not always accurately reflect your brand.
- Hate Sites: This kind of website target specific businesses or business leaders and go beyond reviews. These might contain misleading accusations, which often can be illegal. This type of behaviour is very specific and targeted, but every business should be aware of it. If you find a website on the first page of the search results for your brand with a headline such as, “The truth about your-brand-name” or “your-brand-name scam,” it is certainly pushing potential clients away.
- Negative Media Coverage: It is often claimed that any PR is good PR. However, negative PR nowadays can easily go viral via social media and damage a company’s online reputation for a couple of years in advance. That’s why you should pay attention to what the media is saying about your business and how is your product or brand presented.