Most businesses have their heads buried in the sand as far as managing their online reputations is concerned. For most people, Online Reputation Management is only important for big businesses. If you believe this, then you are in for a shock! The Internet now has a big impact on what happens in the business world, and no brand, big or small, can survive while ignoring it. But what is online reputation management and why is it important?
What is Online Reputation Management?
The idea that most people have about ORM involves managing a brand’s presence across social media. While this is correct, ORM is not only about social media. Instead, it encompasses the entirety of the Internet and what people have been saying about your brand. Your reputation is largely dependent on the quality of service that you provide to your customers. This is something that some people tend to forget! Do a shoddy job, and your reputation will take a hammering.
What Does ORM involve?
Online reputation management involves the following:
- Promptly getting information on what people are saying about your brand
- Addressing both negative and positive feedback
- Soliciting positive feedback from happy customers
The Internet and Your Reputation
The one big challenge about the digital age when it comes to reputation management is that anything that is said about you tends to stick around for a long, long time. Reputation management has been around for as long as there has been commerce around the world. The thing that makes the Internet so pervasive is that anything that is left there will be there well into the future. If you receive a negative review from one of your customers, others will still be able to read it 10 years from now! Fortunately, there are a number of things that you can do to limit the damage, as you will see later on in this article.
Which Platforms Should You Be Concerned About?
From social media to your own website, online reputation management has many aspects:
Managing your reputation on social media is of paramount importance. How do people perceive your brand? Do they view it is a positive way? Or have they been saying negative things about you on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and other social media platforms? Social media now pervades our everyday lives. The majority of people across the globe now use it as a source of news and information.
When it comes to giving your brand positive visibility on social media, you can never do too much. Where possible, try to have a presence on as many platforms as you can. However, when it comes to choosing where to carry out most of your ORM work, the following platforms are a must:
- Facebook: Facebook has a user base of more than 2.3 billion. This makes it one of the biggest social networking platforms on the planet. Quite simply, your brand can’t afford to ignore Facebook. There are a number of things that you can do when it comes to marketing yourself via Facebook. You can create a Facebook Page on which to engage your customers and prospects in conversation. Facebook pages are free, which is especially ideal for emerging businesses. You can also do paid advertising on Facebook. The beauty about the platform when it comes to ads is that not only does it have a huge potential audience for most businesses, but Facebook ads tend to be precisely targeted, giving them a higher CTR and conversion rate.
- Twitter: This is also a great place on which you can enhance your brand’s reputation. Consider regularly tweeting to keep your audience engaged.
2.Your Own Website
When it comes to managing your brand’s reputation, no platform does it better than your own website. That’s why it is so important for you to invest in a professional, attractive site. Having a poorly crafted website or landing page is a good way of planting doubt into people’s minds about your professionalism!
There are a number of ways through which you can get your website to be your ambassador. You can market it via social media. You can also carry out SEO work, including content marketing, to reach out to as wide an audience as possible. Make sure that all your posts are shared across social media platforms.
Always have the upper hand. If you leave matters to chance, you may very well become swamped in negative feedback.
3. Get Online Reviews
Online reviews are another useful way through which you can manage your brand’s reputation. Reviews are important; up to 90% of people admit that they first consult them before making purchasing decisions. So, what people are saying about your business on the Internet is really important when it comes to having a positive impact. The most popular online review platforms are:
- Yellow Pages
- Google Customer Reviews
How Do They Work?
Most online review companies operate in the following ways:
- They collect reviews from people and display them on their platforms. As an example, Yelp gathers reviews about various companies. These reviews are displayed on Yelp.
- They install software on your site enabling you to collect reviews from your customers. The feedback is displayed on your own site. Data from these reviews can also be syndicated to Google for use in Seller and Product ratings (for those that advertise via Google Ads). This is what happens with eKomi and Google Customer Reviews.
Why are Online Reviews Important?
Online reviews are an important way through which you can keep your reputation clean. Of course, you are going to get negative reviews here and there but don’t panic. Be sure to rapidly respond to any negative reviews in a simple, non-confrontational way. Online reviews help build trust, which convinces people that it is safe and worthwhile to do business with you.
Let us help you manage your online reviews. Contact eKomi today to book your demo!