Reputation Management and Why It Matters for Your Business

Reputation has always been an important factor in the success of companies both large and small. However, in today's fast paced technological environment, negative comments and angry rants can spread like wildfire via social media, forums and review sites. In the past, having a handful of difficult customers would rarely put a dent in your overall image. Reputation management once consisted of passing inspections, addressing customer complaints as they arose and avoiding negative press coverage. While these are all still concerns for every business, the internet has left companies exposed like never before. The public now demands authenticity and transparency from the brands they trust, so having an online presence is essential. How then does a company remain visible and open while avoiding the negative impact of a few hot tempered and determined clients? At iBoost, we help companies around the country improve their digital marketing, grow their customer reach and increase sales. Along the way, we've discovered that a well-meaning business can be ruined by ignoring their reputation management responsibilities. Here's a few tips to keep your company's image squeaky clean.


Ways that Your Online Reputation Can Be Negatively Impacted

The information age has brought a wide range of platforms for people to express both excitement and disappointment about their purchases. From local service providers like plumbers and landscape companies to multinational corporations, even those with the best intentions will sometimes falter. Sometimes mistakes are made, and careful companies occasionally discover a few clients that are less than pleased with the value of their product or service. Most customers with complaints are genuinely dissatisfied and want to inform others so they don't make the same mistake. Still, there are always a handful of people who will find fault in everything, and live to publicly point out every shortcoming while screaming from their soap box. If handled incorrectly, the latter customer may go to extremes for their grievances to be acknowledged either through litigation or by conducting a total smear campaign. The more expensive the price tag, the more a dissatisfied customer will be motivated to keep pouring energy into their efforts. A handful have even resorted to making whole websites dedicated to sharing negative information, collecting horror stories from other irritated customers and trolling all mentions of the brand on social media. There are also accounts of competitors intentionally spreading negative reviews and false rumors to bolster their reputation at the expense of yours. These situations tend to happen most often to locally owned businesses, and so are often difficult to combat without the legal teams and resources of larger corporations. 

What Can You Do About it? 

Big companies often have an entire department dedicated to maintaining and improving their brands image. They have experienced attorneys who can send cease and desist letters, and an entire staff that work overtime to make sure every customer service is handled successfully. Unfortunately, smaller companies don't have access to these options. Still, maintaining your reputation both online and offline is essential to the success of your business. So, how can you take steps to keep these problems from happening? 

  • Provide ways for customers to provide feedback privately via email or phone. 
  • If a customer does leave a negative review or comment, immediately respond. This will show other customers that you handle your customer service issues promptly and with care.
  • Work hard on improving your SEO, publishing quality blog posts and sharing often on social media. The more your web pages, social shares and company information show up on search engines, the less likely those handful of negative comments will be visible to your audience. 
  • If a specific customer or competitor is going overboard and you feel there's grounds for legal action, consult an attorney. Though it may seem like an extra expense, it might save your business from severe damage. 
  • Hire a professional company who can properly manage your online reputation, so you can get back to focusing on other priorities. 

Need Help Increasing Brand Awareness or Improving Your Online Image? Call iBoost Today

Are you interesting in discovering ways that your company can improve your online popularity? The experienced professionals at iBoost provide a wide range of services including SEO, digital marketing, content writing, social media management and brand awareness. Contact us today to find out what we can do for you.