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Brand reputation can be difficult to measure, especially as there are many factors that affect the way consumers see and interact with your business. Social media platforms, review sites and search results all have a noticeable impact on the reputation equation, but how they ultimately come together to shape your company’s image and position among stakeholders is often a big question mark. it happens.
Without a clear picture of how people are “scoring” your business online, creating an effective brand reputation strategy to control or shape your brand image can seem like throwing the darts in the dark.
But despite that uncertainty, there are still actions your team can take to steer the online conversation in your favor and build a brand reputation management approach that moves consumers closer to a sale.
While these “best practices” aren’t always foolproof, they can provide some much needed firepower to your brand reputation management efforts in an unstable and unpredictable online environment.
1. Search and track your brand on social
Calculating your more important Brand Reputation Score can be difficult. But doing regular searches for your brand on Google and social media sites can at least help uncover what people are looking for and what they are saying about your business online. Regularly auditing your search results and brand footprint on Facebook, Instagram, TikTok and other platforms can help you better understand consumer sentiment and identify problems before they get out of control.
At the very least, this process makes your marketing team aware and helps prevent costly online surprises that can erode your brand’s reputation.
related: How to manage (and monitor) your reputation on social media
2. When you get customer feedback, take the time to respond
Consumers expect engagement, whether it’s a positive comment on Facebook or a negative response on Yelp. Not only that, but they expect you to respond to their concerns as quickly as possible. Even if the problem is beyond resolution or isn’t something you can do right away, it’s important to show that you’re paying attention and prioritizing people’s concerns.
A quick, measured response plan is essential for cultivating brand loyalty and staving off the online reputation crisis before it snowballs. Sometimes, it can turn a bad experience into public acclaim and a huge positive experience for your business.
3. Request online reviews from satisfied customers
When used properly, online reviews can quickly become powerful brand reputation management tools, providing a significant blow to customer trust and confidence while sharpening your competitive edge.
Many potential customers want company reviews when researching your business. Customer reviews play an important role in decision making in search engines, providing consumers with inspiring social evidence used to learn and evaluate your brand online.
Encouraging happy customers to leave reviews helps increase your review footprint; They create even more positive reviews for prospects they encounter during the due diligence process. The more positive brand mentions you have on the web, the better will be the public perception of your brand and your overall brand reputation. Knowing how to request reviews that consistently demonstrate customer satisfaction is a brand reputation management strategy you cannot do without.
related: Here’s How To Give Your Customers Positive Reviews (And Why You Might Not)
4. Build Your Following on Social Media
Social media offers a variety of ways to build and manage a positive brand reputation, but few are as powerful as building a strong brand. Select users who not only interact with your brand but willingly distribute branded content and consistently advocate for your business and offerings are invaluable.
Brand advocates begin by actively engaging in discussions and sharing content that people want to engage with. Informative blogs, how-to videos, surveys and other interactive shares give users a reason to follow your business and build meaningful relationships that generate trust and customer loyalty. Setting up a regular social media schedule ensures that this content is delivered regularly and reliably, further strengthening the bond with your audience.
Encouraging brand advocacy among your employees can also be a highly effective brand reputation management practice. However, well-defined rules should guide the internal engagement and keep the conversation honest and positive.
5. Be Honest With Your Audience
Fake reviewers and social media bots can wreak havoc on your online reputation, and you are well within your rights to pursue the option of removing content when they launch attacks against your brand. But when it comes to honest reviews and comments, trying to address the problem can sometimes have dire consequences for your business, generating an online backlash that may haunt you well into the future. can.
Directly addressing genuine complaints on social and review sites is generally the best way to manage such negativity and reduce its overall impact on your brand reputation. It also demonstrates a level of honesty that can resonate with consumers.
6. Clearly Define Your Objectives
What do you want to achieve with your online reputation management efforts? Whatever platform and methods you are using to enhance your brand reputation, it is important to have shootable, achievable, clearly defined objectives before diving into it. Broad goals like increasing brand visibility and improving brand awareness may be your final game, but defining specific results (increased shares, likes, reviews, etc.) is more to drive your team to action and hit key reputation benchmarks. Provides clear focus.
related: Smart Tips for Setting and Actually Achieving Your Business Goals
7. Identify Your Target Audience
Brand reputation often varies depending on the people you’re trying to reach. And while it’s important to create a positive image that comes with as many people as possible, knowing the specific stakeholders you need to influence ensures that you’re generating content and taking action that works. Have maximum impact on your credibility.
Identifying your target audience and their needs allows you to not only test your efforts but also communicate your message more effectively and build a genuine connection.