Online Reputation Management
Online reputation management isn’t new but it is becoming more and more important for organisations and individuals. Reputation management is essentially managing, monitoring and responding to communication about your brand on third party websites. It’s all about ensuring that the voice of your brand is present and engaging in the online world so that its reputation is maintained.
Social media is a fantastic platform to enhance your online reputation. It not only allows you to present a friendly and personal public image of your brand, but respond directly to your customers and potential customers, keeping them updated and informed of news regarding your business or organisation.
Maintaining an engaging web presence on several platforms can help to also keep pages controlled by your brand in the top search engine results. This can be helpful when it comes to damage limitation if bad news about your business breaks, giving you an outlet to explain the bad news and ensure your voice can still be heard.
Having a Voice
It’s really important to make sure that you maintain a consistent “voice” on social media. This means having a team who all contribute and, crucially, making sure that they are all on message and understand the brand inside-out.
There are occasions, such as the company blog, when a sense of individuality works. Including a thumbnail and a short bio of the writer will make the piece seem more engaging and personal, but for most social media it should really feel as if the brand is doing the talking.
Avoid the Pitfalls
There have been several gaffs made by employees of big businesses over the years that could have easily been avoided with a little more care.
Too many of these reputation-damaging mistakes are made when employees accidentally use a company account or profile, when they think they are using a personal one. It is prudent to put procedures in place that eliminate the chances of this happening.
Managing Tricky Customers
Every so often a customer will not receive the service they expect. This is inevitable and happens to even the very best of organisations. Sometimes your unhappy customer will take to social media to express their dissatisfaction. If this come to your attention, and it should do quickly if you are being vigilant, be sure to engage with that customer and do it in as polite a way as possible.
Even if you think their complaint is unreasonable it is better to be seen to attempt to resolve the issue rather than be defensive.
It’s worth remembering that no one else who reads the exchange will know the full story and if you are combative your reputation may well suffer. It’s far better to be disarming rather than incendiary.
Be a Great Social Brand
Social media sites are great tools to communicate with your customers. In order to be a top social brand you need to make sure you are regularly monitoring social spaces online so you are ready to engage in relevant conversations in a timely manner. You also need to be compelling, authentic and above all consistent in your approach. If you stick to these rules and remain vigilant, your online reputation will go from strength to strength.