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How to Manage Your Business’s Online Reputation

How to Manage Your Business’s Online Reputation

In today’s world, every company or business professional has a digital footprint. Businesses that are focused on growth need to pay attention to how people perceive their brand. Negativity can spread like wildfire online, so businesses must put in the work to build and maintain a positive image.

A good online reputation is crucial to your company’s success. When nurturing your online brand image, some key techniques will help you maintain a solid footing. You can place your brand in the best light and gain the trust of your consumers by implementing the following strategies.

1. Encourage — and Monitor — Online Reviews

When you’re selling a product or service, online reviews are essential. Seeing what other consumers think of your company will, ideally, give potential customers the confidence to do business with you. A business profile on Google will put your company in front of your target audience and enable existing customers to rate your business. If you’re struggling to gain traction, using resources like a Google business profile manager will help you optimize your page and get verified online.

Once your business is set up with review services, you need to monitor the feedback you’re getting. If reviews are slow to come in, creating a promotion or sending a reminder can motivate your consumers to rate their experience.

Every company wants plenty of good reviews, but often people are only moved to comment when they have a complaint. If you receive a bad review, responding to it graciously shows prospective customers that you’ve seen the feedback and intend to make things right. Online reviews are key to helping new customers learn more about your business. Although you can’t stop people from leaving bad reviews, you can show up positively by responding to negative feedback with care. Managing reviews and interacting with customers will help you build relationships and grow your business online.

2. Use Social Media Responsibly

Social media is a great tool to boost your brand’s online presence, but businesses must be responsible for its use. While you want your content to be engaging, managing your reputation may mean keeping a good filter in place. Depending on your business, “cheeky” may be good — but rude certainly isn’t. Ensure that your team has checks and balances so that you catch any errors and aren’t posting anything that would misrepresent the brand.

Another key part of protecting your brand reputation through social media is monitoring your audience’s interactions. Companies with a big following are guaranteed to get numerous comments and messages every day. It’s crucial to stay on top of these and regulate the comment sections, ensuring any inappropriate content is removed. Responding to direct messages will foster trust and help your consumers feel more connected to your brand as well.

Keeping a close eye on the activity on your social channels helps you maintain positivity on your profiles. Consumers will appreciate a brand that is responsive and shares content that is relevant to their needs.

3. Practice What You Preach

When reflecting on your current online habits, take a step back and analyze your company’s goals. Your mission should guide your social media strategy and how you interact with others online. It’s common for brands to be caught in the crossfire when they make decisions that go against their core values.

Online audiences will be quick to notice when your actions go against the principles you claim to stand for. For example, if your brand openly advocates for the environment, ensure that your processes are sustainable and environmentally friendly. Be mindful of any organizations and political figures you’re supporting as well. If your business is involved in politics at all, you need to do thorough research and ensure all representatives support your values.

Living and breathing your values fully online will help contribute to your authenticity as a brand. Consumers are more likely to buy into businesses that they trust. By establishing this trusting relationship, you can promote positivity in online conversations related to your brand.

4. Take Action Based on Feedback

In combining the above strategies, you may notice some trends among your audience segments. Over time, you will receive consistent feedback on aspects of your business, good and bad.

When businesses make changes in response to complaints, consumers are more likely to stay loyal.

For example, if your company continues to get negative feedback regarding pricing, you can cut prices or offer discounts that help offset the cost. Making changes in this manner will make consumers feel heard and important to the brand. Your audience may even share their positive feedback on these changes online, helping your brand rebuild from any previous negativity.

Taking online feedback to heart will improve your reputation among your audience and make your product or service offering more attractive. Your business’s willingness to pay attention and listen to its customers will demonstrate that you’re a caring and genuine brand.

Turning the Bad Into Good

If you’re noticing a large amount of negative feedback from consumers online, recognize that it’s valid and important. It can be difficult to take criticism without getting defensive, especially given the hard work you’ve put into your business. Remember that preserving your brand image takes an open mind. You need to be willing to improve and please consumers to keep your online reputation in good standing.

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