Experts On Yourside & Company
P O Box 405
Lithia, Florida 33547
(813) 273-8900 Office
(813) 784-0056 Sales
(813) 712-9619 Tech Support
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Why Reputation Management/Reputation Marketing Matters to Your Business
Reputation management matters to your business. The term “reputation management” means managing what potential customers see when they look you up online.
Definition of Reputation Marketing
Wikipedia definds Reputaion Marketing as a marriage between Reputaion Managent and Brand Marketing.
More than two-thirds of customers make decisions based on online reviews. Twenty-two percent of potential business is lost if potential customers read just one negative article about your organization. The percentage rises to 44 percent if customers see two negative articles. It climbs even higher, to 59 percent, with three.
In other words, negative commentary about your company directly impacts your ability to keep and grow your business.
Why It’s Important
The web and social media have become powerfully influential in driving customers to purchase products and services. It’s a great benefit to consumers because online information conveys both information and the range of choices.
Think of the last time you bought something. Whether you bought online or in a physical store, it’s very likely you looked up information on the web before purchasing. That’s true whether you bought athletic shoes or a new smartphone. You may have compared product information and prices. You may have looked at the product to see how it differed from competitors. You may have read customer reviews and read customer ratings of the company and product.
But the benefit to consumers from information and array of choices also carries a potential downside for companies. Much more data out about a business exists, outside of your control. Every point at which a customer may look your company up on the web constitutes a point at which Reputation Management/Reputation Marketing can affect their decision and view of your company. Your product, business and personnel may be reviewed on Google.com or yelp.com. You may be mentioned in social media postings on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and more. You may receive comments on your company sites, both web and social media.
If the comments are negative, you need to actively manage them to protect your sales and brand.
If the comments are positive, you need to harness them to drive more sales and further your brand reputation.
You can see now why 89 percent of managers believe that managing reputation risk is more important than managing strategic risk in the company.Set up a Monitoring System
Don’t wait until you find sales slipping. You need to set up a system of constant monitoring.
There are processes that will search for your company and product names. Set up systems to monitor hashtags and other relevant mentions.
Don’t fear negative comments. First, if your services are high quality and your employees have been trained well to serve customers, negative comments are unlikely to occur to any great degree. Plus, they won’t be substantive if they do happen. Second, while negative comments may sting, make them your friend. An unhappy customer review can alert you to areas that really may benefit from improvement.
So how do you manage your reputation in the event of negative comments? Here’s a step by step guide:
Positive comments, of course, are great news for your business. Here are steps to maximizing and developing positive comments:
1. Ask for Feedback
One of the best ways to capture positive feedback is to ask for it. Asking customers to give you a star rating with comments is a tried-and-true method of garnering positive data. Feedback data is an excellent way for you to find out what customer perceptions of a product or service are.
If positive, mine the comments for use in your social media. If some comments point out room for improvement, make those improvements.
2. Maintain an Active Online Presence
You must maintain an active online presence as part of Reputation Management/Reputation Marketing. There’s no way around it. The form could be regular blog posts on your website or content on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, and any other outlet you think is relevant to your business.
Social media content can take many forms. You can share positive feedback data. You can share your ratings. You can also actively develop content to share with the public. You can create surveys and questionnaires that allow the public to express their thoughts. Harness the essence of social media: the ability to collectively share. At its best, social media is a conversation. Tap the power of that conversation.
3. Develop Content to Position Your Company
One of the most effective forms of online reputation management is to develop broad content on a regular basis. Developed content should give value to the customer. Over time, it will position your company as a go-to source for help and information. The result? A positive impression that drives sales.
You can develop informative and helpful blog posts on your business, for example. If your business is real estate, provide posts on the five best ways to prepare a house for sale. The individual realtors can give this information to clients. Sales can be driven for both the realtors and the clients.
Reputation Management/Reputation Marketing is a key part of doing business today. It consists of counterbalancing any negative impressions of your Real Estate services and establishing positive impressions. These steps will help you maximize both.
1. Respond Immediately
Don’t let a negative comment, of any kind, stand without a pleasant rebuttal from the organization. The response’s content, of course, will depend on the nature of the comment. If the comment is unhappy with the service, you can point out counterbalancing data if you have it. “Eighty-five percent of our customers have rated our service 4 stars or above” could potentially turn a complaint into a sale. It makes the Real Estate pratice look confident and proud.
If a negative comment truly does point out a problem, note that you have taken steps to rectify the situation. If it seems appropriate, thank the customer for the alert. Tell them you are using the information to drive improvement. Express concern that the customer didn’t get a service they were happy with. You are essentially responding as customer service departments do with a complaint. You’re just posting the response rather than using a telephone or e-mail response to an individual.
While responding, always remember that you are posting a response for the public to read. The ultimate point is that online readers should take away positive information - that information being either most people don’t have an unpleasant experience, or you are fixing it as soon as possible. And then do take steps to fix it, of course.
2. Never Remove Comments
Even if you have access, never, ever remove a negative comment. It will make you seem defensive. Readers may view it as a sign that you have something to hide. An attempt at deletion makes the situation worse, not better.
3. Contact the Customer If Possible
If a negative comment is associated with contact information, reach out to the poster. Explain the situation. Offer a benefit to them. Again, this is very similar to what you would do with a dissatisfied customer in a customer service department. You want the person to be a satisfied customer, not unhappy.
Once the situation is resolved, try to turn the negative comment into a positive one. You can directly ask for a follow-up.
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