Successful Brand Reputation Management on Social Media: Guide
The internet is one of the best marketing tools in the world today. By using the internet properly, your enterprise will reach millions of people in the blink of an eye. This means that it can accelerate the growth of your enterprise or destroy it completely.
And this is why you should prioritize managing your online reputation. In today’s technologically-driven world, your enterprise cannot afford to appear anything less than trustworthy and reputable when potential customers search for you online.
In this article, we are going to discuss why online management is important, how you can do it and how to take the right approach to ensure that your brand is well represented in every area.
What appears when you type your organization’s name into a search engine? You’ll probably see your organization’s website, a couple of social profiles, and one or two news articles discussing your recent success stories.
But this is not always the case. At times, you’ll find critiques or unfriendly reviews in the search results. You may think that you don’t have any control over the results that appear on the internet. But this is not the case. If you have searched your business and nothing related to your business comes up, or worse – only negative reviews appear, you can change this with reputation management.
Reputation management is all about monitoring different aspects of the online presence of your brand and doing everything in your power to improve it. In some cases, it involves dealing with negative reviews professionally. For your strategy to work, you should be proactive.
Most business leaders take the reactive approach when their reputation is threatened. Unfortunately, this makes it difficult for them to rise. And this means missing out on great opportunities to build a good reputation in the online world. At the end of the day, reputation management is all about damage control. And improving your image.
Benefits of managing your online reputation
The majority of business owners think of online reputation management when something destroys their online reputation such as a social media rant or a negative news story. This is not the best approach. When done properly, online reputation management not only preserves your reputation but also builds on it over time. Here are a few benefits of managing your online reputation:
1. Build a good reputation
Spreading positive news about your organization, building strong relationships with clients and customers, and ensuring that your site is a valuable source of information will help in building a powerful online presence. Now that most consumers use Google for every business they intend to visit, you need to ensure that the results displayed show that you are worth their time and energy.
Apart from search results, you can build your reputation by sharing on social media, reaching out to publications, and gaining exposure in other locations. As users see this information, they’ll start making positive associations with your organization.
These associations go beyond your online presence since people will start sharing their opinions about your organization with family and friends. When they’ll require the product or service that your organization offers, they’ll know that you are trustworthy and reliable.
2. Beat the competition
Apart from your reputation, you need to remember that your competitors have a reputation both online and offline. As you manage your online reputation, you can ensure that the results that show for your organization are better than those of your competitors.
Most consumers today don’t blindly go to the first organization they hear about. They conduct extensive research, read customer reviews, and ask their family and friends for advice. You may think that your four-star rating is great. But if most of your competitors have five stars, you won’t look great.
To create an effective reputation management strategy, you need to monitor conversations revolving around your online brand and that of your competitors. That said, you should avoid spreading negative press about your competitors. And use that energy to strengthen your organization’s reputation.
3. Deal with negative press
Even the best performing company with talented employees and amazing products will have critics. While you might avoid thinking about it, there will be a time when complaints about your organization will hit the internet.
If you haven’t uploaded much about your organization, these negative stories will take over the search results of your organization. However, if you’ve taken adequate steps to spread positive information, users will know that the existing story doesn’t go hand in hand with your brand.
Your site affects your reputation
At the heart of your online presence, your website plays an exceptional role in how clients and customers perceive your organization. Users tend to have certain expectations when visiting your site. And you need to meet or exceed their expectations. There are a lot of factors that determine how online users perceive your site. Here are some of the major ones to consider while working on your reputation online:
1. Your position in organic search results
Before a visitor arrives on your website, they’ll need to know that it is reputable. You can show this by ranking high in organic search results. If the user sees interesting and well-written posts about your industry, they’ll know that your website is worth their time and energy. If this hasn’t happened to your organization, you need to reconsider your approach to SEO.
SEO can help you improve your rank. And this will increase the number of people who click on your site. This means that you’ll get extra opportunities to promote your brand and get new customers.
2. Design and appearance
Once users visit your site, one of the first things they’ll take note of is its design and layout. If it appears unprofessional, messy, or difficult to navigate, they’ll return to search results and try out other businesses. That said, you don’t have to go overboard and have every new feature or design on the market. As long as you have a site that looks professional and is user-friendly, your major concern should be quality.
3. Quality of content
Quality of content is one of the major factors that will determine how visitors think of your site. In-depth informational content will help them understand the topic or solve problems. And this will make them see your organization in a favorable light. And build your reputation.
On the other hand, poorly written content will have a negative effect. If your site is full of generic content, you should revisit your online reputation strategy.
4. Speed and usability
In addition to content and appearance, the usability of your site plays an integral role in determining the experience that your visitors will have on your site. If your site is easy to navigate and loads quickly, users will naturally focus on your content.
However, if your site is disorderly, it will be difficult for users to find what they want. Or, if it takes a long time to load, they’ll feel frustrated with your organization. This is not good for anyone. However, it can be easily fixed. You need to test the speed and usability of your site regularly to ensure that you provide a positive experience for your customers. You should remember to include mobile usability while conducting these tests since most users browse the internet with their smartphones and tablets.
Tips to manage your reputation on social media
Social media has given customers a voice. This means that unsatisfied customers have a platform to spread negative information about your organization. With online management, you can easily guide the conversation surrounding your organization on social media positively by:
1. Creating a social strategy
If you haven’t created pages and filled out profiles on Twitter, Facebook Google +, or LinkedIn, now is the time to do so. Depending on your brand and industry, you can use relevant platforms. After setting up your accounts, you need to set aside enough time to create your social media strategy. Every platform requires different content and approach. And it will time to develop a strategy that works best for your brand.
Finding the right strategy might require trial and error. Especially if you are in an industry that is not active on social media. If you are starting, there are lots of free online resources with simple instructions for creating a marketing plan on social media platforms.
While creating your strategy, you need to consider the type of content you post, how often you publish, and the voice which you write. Ensure that everyone who manages your social media profiles is on the same page to avoid confusing your followers.
2. Be actively present
After coming up with your social media strategy and finding people who can manage your accounts effectively, you need to prioritize maintaining an active presence on social media. Most online users love consistency. And most of them expect regular updates from the organizations they follow.
This is not only good for your strategy but also responses on social media. When users engage with you, always respond on time. This will not only help in building your brand but also encouraging followers to leave a positive review.
With all these tips on online reputation management, it’s time for some action. Once your strategy is in place, everything will be crystal clear.