It takes a lot of effort to develop a business and even more to keep your customers happy. But even with customer service at its best, a business is bound to see its reputation face a bump ever and anon.
Wondering what people think about your business? Want to know how to improve your online reputation?
Here we tell you how to keep in check and improve your brand reputation.
Online Reputation Management (ORM) is about monitoring and managing your brand’s reputation across the internet. It is also about managing the products, optimizing search engine results, and ensuring that your business is represented correctly before your viewers.
By actively reviewing your reputation, you can minimize negative customer feedback and encourage happy customers to give encourage satisfied customers to provide positive feedback.
Why is Online Reputation Management important?
Nowadays, customers tend to check the reviews of a product or a brand online before investing in it. No doubt, it is a wise choice as it helps the customers get the best out there.
But how can we manage to get in the good books of our customers? Well, that’s where Online Reputation Management plays a vital role.
With ORM, your brand deals with adverse claims by addressing them directly and openly. It helps in maintaining transparency between the customers and the brand. It bridges the gap between the people and the business hence developing a sense of trust.
“It takes 20 years to build a reputation and 5 minutes to ruin it. So if you think about that, you’ll do things differently.”
~ Warren Buffet
A brand takes various blows online, but they’re often small attacks such as a few negative comments and low star ratings.
But a PR campaign or an advertisement for a specific comment isn’t worth it. But regardless of how small these attacks are, they can always add up quickly.
So, online reputation management needs to take care of each of these tiny sparks that can potentially be a wildfire.
You need a process you can put in place for successful online reputation management. Of course, the process will vary for companies depending on the size, industry, and resources. But still, the key points mentioned below will help you get a basic outline for strategizing the ORM for your brand.
Decide how you want to come out to the audience if you wish to be interpreted as The Market Leader or to have the best Customer Service. The call is yours. You can, sometimes, be both ‘A Market Leader with an exemplary Customer Service.’
Go on the web and search for your brand. Then, go through the ratings, reviews, and feedback from the customers. It will help you know what the customers feel about your brand.
A few tools would help you research and evaluate your online reputation.
It will identify the most influential blogs and news sites that have published articles starring your brand in the last 30 days and show recent social media mentions.
The tool also gives you a score that helps you identify the strengths and weaknesses of your business’s reputation.
Mention is a social media management and web monitoring tool. It allows you to monitor over 1 billion sources such as review sites, blogs, etc.
You can use it to track your brand, competitors, and customers by using different search criteria.
It allows you to efficiently draft, schedule, and publish posts from multiple channels so that you can connect with your audience across social media and grow your online reputation.
Google Alerts is a content change detection and notification tool. The tool sends emails to the user to find new results—such as web pages, newspaper articles, or blogs—that match the user’s search term.
These tools will help you know right away when your company is being talked about, and you can quickly respond when necessary.
Once you’ve gone through the web, you’ll get to know the details.
Try to communicate with your customers through channels such as social media. Choose a platform where your customers are more active, such as Twitter or Instagram.
Set up your goals and prioritize what you want to focus on first.
Being an owner, you get to decide what tasks you would prioritize. Not all things can be dealt with simultaneously.
Categorize the concerns as ‘Urgent’, ‘Non-Urgent’ or ‘Blacklist’.
Urgent: – You have to put all the concerns that might require immediate attention or response in this category. Deal with them as promptly as possible. If you cannot, give them a possible, but short timeframe in which they can expect a reply.
Non-Urgent: – Usually, this category contains the concerns that can be sorted out with a typical response, such as a section of automatically generated solutions or FAQs.
Even if they don’t need an immediate response, do make sure to give them a timeframe as well.
Then when you reach out to them, even with a bit of delay, make sure you acknowledge their concern and resolve it.
Blacklist: – well, no business or brand has attained 100% customer satisfaction or review. There will, undoubtedly, be haters or competitor brands going to every possible extent to do the Negative Marketing of your brand. No matter how hard you try, they can never be convinced to act reasonably. Some chances are dealing with them might escalate things and lead to a much negative impact on your business. So it’s better to avoid them up to a plausible extent.
So, sometimes it is just better not to issue any official response. Instead, you can give a ‘blacklist’ that everyone can refer to while going through your policy docs.
Even though you might feel like responding to negative feedback or reviews would only draw attention to them, the case is quite the opposite.
Most customers tend to see the negative reviews first to know the shortcomings of a brand.
So dealing with the negativity upfront is a necessity. The customer should know that you are there to take care of the things that might go wrong.
The way you reply to your feedback—a positive or negative, support or criticism—determines your brand’s online reputation.
You must acknowledge the feedback and reply to them promptly and with empathy. Remember, the better you deal with negative feedback, the better are the chances of building a good and loyal customer base. Even those who are unsatisfied now might reach out again to your brand if their problems are heard and answered correctly.
Acknowledge your mistakes and apologize for them. Showing remorse diffuses tense customer situations and strengthens relationships with them. It also maintains the honesty and transparency of the brand towards the customers.
Design your apology with a genuine intention to own up to and fix the issue. Next, promptly address the significant concerns that the consumers and the media put forward, and assure them you will do your best to amend the mistakes. Finally, describe what you are going to do to resolve the situation.
Nobody can satisfy every customer in the market. So there will undoubtedly be negative reviews. Properly dealing with them is fine, but it is equally essential to outweigh them positively.
Encourage your happy customers to drop their positive feedback. You can do that in person, in email newsletters, and at your place of business with your free Google Marketing Kit.
You can create a small pop-up whenever someone accesses your website, asking them to leave a review. Make sure to make it as easy as possible. Provide relevant links that would redirect them to the sites for dropping feedback.
Make sure the site doesn’t require much hassle, just even for dropping reviews such as sign-ups or much of personal details.
Also, always remember to thank them at the end of the message.
Search engine optimization (SEO) improves the quality and quantity of traffic to a website or a web page from search engines.
SEO is operated so that a website will receive more traffic from visitors from a search engine, such as Google if websites rank higher on the Search Engine Results Page (SERP).
People tend to visit the top few websites prompted when a particular keyword is searched via a search engine. For example, the complete five listings in Google’s search results receive about two-thirds of all clicks.
So with the help of SEO, try to put your Brand website or third-party websites with positive reviews on the top of the SERP. ORM is about managing search engine content, working on negative business reviews, and encouraging happy clients to contribute more positive feedback.
Adopting various techniques and strategies can help you push damaging and harmful content further down the Google Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs) by ranking your own or third-party more desirable material above it.
It will help build a much better reputation for your brand in front of the customers.
You have to be extremely cautious while choosing the right person to be your brand influencer.
Even the people you are confident about might not be the best choice for attributing your brand name to.
Try to research and find out the influencers who would have mentioned your brand quite a few times and have a large following.
Please make a list of such influencers and thank them for their mentions. Even if they put forward an unbiased review back then, you can always build relations with them. Further, you can also take a step forward and make them the Brand Ambassador.
ORM is a crucial strategy of any business, marketing, and growth for any business out there. Building and managing your online reputation means actively monitoring and managing your business’s impression on the users.
It also helps you enhance the positive reputation of your brand that you have worked so hard to build.
The first step toward a positive reputation is deciding how you want your business to be anticipated. Then, respond to questions and feedback to show the customers that your company is there to resolve any problems.
By implementing ORM strategies, you’ll have more control over how consumers view your company. As a result, it will attract more customers to your business and create a solid and loyal customer base.
We hope that the details we shared will assist you in building a firm and positive online reputation for your brand.