Does Your Brand Need Reputation Management?

If you’ve heard of online reputation management, you’ve probably wondered if it’s something your brand needs. After all, the multi-million dollar reputation management industry has blossomed into a global phenomenon, and companies large and small have started adopting the best practices contained within it.

At its core, the intent of online reputation management is to defend a brand from potentially damaging, negative information that may crop up on the internet. This information can take the form of negative customer reviews, competitors statements or references, content on public forums, and posts on social media sites. Each of these areas needs its own approach, and not all businesses need equal effort in each one.

So, Does Your Brand Need Reputation Management?

To determine if you might need reputation management, consider what it’s done for other small- and medium-sized companies:

  • Reputation Management can help to build credibility. When potential customers search the internet for the products or services your company provides, you want to be sure they’re getting a good impression of you and your authority in the market. Attacks against your quality, business processes, or level of customer service can affect how someone new to your brand might perceive it.
  • Reputation Management can increase sales. By staying engaged with the conversations your customers are having about you online, you’re proactively setting the stage for sales growth. Reputation Management seeks to preempt negative information before it becomes a problem, through a multi-disciplinary approach that spans multiple online platforms. A cleaner online profile yields bigger, more sustainable sales.
  • Reputation Management provides deep insights into your brand. One of the best ways to get at the reality of how your customers are perceiving your brand is to analyze what they’re saying about you online. Because of how vast and complex the online landscape can be, this takes a detailed, well-planned strategy. But, once it’s in place, the insights gained can help you make informed decisions in an ever-changing marketplace.
  • Reputation Management is beneficial for recruiting and employee retention. When a potential employee is considering going to work for your company, they’re very likely to conduct their own research. This is where negative reviews, harsh customer feedback, and disparaging competitor information may impact the candidate’s decision. A smart reputation management solution can reduce this negative impact through precise, targeted actions aimed at making you look professional and trustworthy.
  • Reputation Management shows you where to spend your resources. After the successful implementation of a Reputation Management program, it’s likely that you’ll learn about areas for improvement in your brand. By analyzing what is being said by your customers and in what context, you can allocate your resources more strategically, resulting in more return on your Reputation Management investment.

When you consider the five points above, think about how they relate to your business. If you’re interested in increasing sales, improving credibility, safeguarding your brand and obtaining profound insights about your brand, you need reputation management.

To learn more about how to get started, contact Altitude Agency today.

How to Respond to a Negative Review Online

Regardless of how well your business is run, there will always be the potential for a customer or client to have a negative experience. And, because of how quickly word gets around on the internet, negative reviews of your business can become a problem sometimes overnight. In this post, we’re addressing this issue head-on by providing you with tips on how to respond when you are faced with a negative review of your business.

Before even beginning to draft a response to your negative review, remember that this is a unique opportunity for you to use the voice of your brand to engage with your customer base. Not only will you be communicating directly with the customer in your response; you’ll also be advertising your values and level of customer service for new and existing customers. So, view the review response as a chance to shine.

What to Do When Responding to a Negative Review

Politely Propose a Fix, Promptly

In general, it’s best to respond to negative reviews as soon as possible. This gives you the best chance at controlling the potential damage that might be done to your brand. It also shows that you’re responsive and alert to the needs of your customers.

In addition to acting soon (preferably within the first day or two), propose a solution or fix for the customer who submitted the negative review. For example, if you sell dog treats and someone reviewed them saying their dog didn’t like them, offer to refund their money. Even if they don’t take you up on it, it shows that you’re doing the right thing as the business owner.

As you enter this dialog with the customer, remember that this is purely business, and there’s nothing to gain from involving emotion or using negative wording. Assigning blame or guilt rarely ever helps the situation, and the more you can keep the communication polite and professional, the better the overall outcome will be.

Go the Extra Mile

Think about how you might go outside the box to please this customer. Perhaps you might think about sending them a message offline, to prove to them that you’re genuinely interested in resolving their concern. If you can locate the order number or customer profile, reach out to them as an order follow-up and try to agree on a resolution together.

If you’re able to salvage the customer even after they’ve had a poor experience with your company, it’s possible that he or she will go back and change their review for the better. What matters most in responding to negative reviews online isn’t who was right or wrong. What matters most is how you react. Think of every negative review as an opportunity to publicly showcase your commitment to 100% customer satisfaction. Your bottom line will thank you in the end.

Sound customer development strategies make for successful businesses, both online and in-person. At Altitude Agency, we know how to thrill customers with powerful digital marketing solutions. Contact us now to learn more.