It doesn’t matter whether or not you believe in reputation management, the point is, people are talking about you so you must know exactly what they are saying and know the conversations and views they hold about you. Therefore, you must always have a guide to monitoring and improving your brand reputation.
Failure to have brand reputation monitoring could potentially damage your brand and everyone within your company. So, you need to ensure that what everyone is saying about you is a reflection of the messages that you want to convey to the public, especially your target audience.
Why is brand reputation important? Everything you say or do is a reflection of you as an individual. These two key areas possess parameters of behavior that you need to follow so the core messages that you as an employee, manager, or spokesperson, for instance, adhere to your brand’s need for transparency, openness, honesty, and ethical practices in your dealings. This guide to monitoring and improving brand reputation will teach you all this and more.
As said, your brand reputation could make or break your business. That’s why in this post, we will talk about how a good or bad brand reputation example could either catapult your business to high-level success or drag it into a devastating downward spiral. So here are some useful reputation management tips to get you started.
Generate Reviews From Previous Clients
Everyone looks for reviews online. Before making that call or filling out a form, consumers search for your brand name. If you don’t look good or don’t seem to have any reputation at all, you’re bound to be on the losing end. When they search for reviews regarding your brand and it looks good, they will go ahead and reach out. But if it doesn’t or they can’t find even a single review, they’re most likely to change their minds about contacting you.
So it’s super important that you capture reviews from your previous customers. If you have little to no reviews, the first thing you need to do is send out emails asking for their feedback. This can be in the form of an email blast, whether there are hundreds, or maybe a thousand of them.
Don’t let bad reviews scare you off, this is completely normal. Tell them to feel free to give suggestions to improve your product or service so they can expect something better from you next time. If they had a great experience with you, they can click to leave a review, or if they didn’t, send them a feedback form. So you are funneling traffic but at the same time capturing good reviews.
The main purpose of this is to generate some feedback. And it doesn’t matter if not all of them are five-star ratings. Having all five-star reviews could mean a red flag for them or they could be suspected of manipulating the results. For the most part, if your brand or business is doing a great job, you’re going to get great reviews, and more reviews, which in turn will help you grow your reputation online.
Automate Your Processes
How do you improve brand reputation? You do this by automating your processes. If you’re sending out invoices, newsletters, notifications, and even thank you notes after doing business, automate them to save you precious time and energy. Update your invoice template, or your email signature, even. Those thank you emails you send may also need some updating with your call to action or CTA at the bottom.
This is one of the first things you will learn once you have a guide to monitoring and improving brand reputation. You can simply say you appreciate their business so please take a few moments to leave you with feedback. So you will be capturing more reviews since they are automated, which in turn helps you grow your reputation online a lot faster.
Personalize Your Interactions
How do you manage brand reputation? Try personalizing your interactions with your customers. Ask them while you are working with them or do it face to face. If you have your people out on the field or coming over for home services, this can be done. It’s also possible to do such by calling them on a one-on-one basis. If they saw you online and decided to visit your office, ask them face to face.
Here’s the thing, when a person is asked face to face, the chances of them doing reviews is a lot easier. It is important, however, that you have this process streamlined and ready. Perhaps you can have it handy on a tablet, a computer, or a kiosk where they can enter a review immediately in real-time. Have it up and running so that when you ask them and they agree to do it, there’s no waiting time involved.
This is super easy to do and will help your business scale your reviews precisely so you can get even more reviews. Furthermore, if they’re leaving a review and you are right in front of them, they’re likely going to leave a better review, allowing you to grow your brand’s online reputation even more.
Read and Reply to All Reviews, No Matter What
How do you monitor brand reputation? Be brave enough to read and reply to all the reviews you receive, regardless if they are good or bad. Do this even if it’s a positive review and all you need to do is say thanks. This goes a long way. Responding lets people who are analyzing your reputation online and reading your reviews know you truly care by reading and responding. It assures them that you put an effort into understanding your business and target audience.
When you get a bad review, avoid being combative at all costs. Be calm and simply state the facts. It’s a small case that your leads and prospects look to when reviewing your online reputation. They will see the customer’s side of the story, followed by your response. If they think that you are being professional and enjoy feedback by stating out facts, that will get you a lot of brownie points. This can be their tipping point for determining if they will go for your business or not.
Don’t forget to respond to positive reviews as well. This will not only look good for you but will also help build more content, making your reputation online rank higher compared to your competitors. An influencer manager can help you with this and improve your brand reputation.
Invest Time For Your Online Reputation
It’s tempting to skip doing this thing, but you must invest time in your online reputation with the community. Yes, you are extremely busy, have a million things running at once, keeping your brand afloat and relevant to your audience.
If you can’t do these all by yourself, have someone in your team do it. Or, if they also have their hands full with other responsibilities, then you have to hire someone else to do it. Find a seasoned company that offers outstanding reputation management services to help you. If you can’t do it, find someone else who will because you simply cannot skip this.
Avoid and Eliminate All Fake and Anonymous Reviews
On plenty of occasions, your competitors can see your online reputation being built up. They might put in a fake negative review of your business and not only is this frustrating, but it’s also potentially damaging. Don’t fret though because you can do something about this.
Review platforms nowadays have processes to follow so brands can potentially take out some of those reviews. But for the times that they don’t (or won’t), don’t hold your breath and dwell on it. The best thing you can do is bury it with tons of positive reviews. This makes it even more crucial for getting a lot more great feedback.
Here’s a tip, don’t stick to just one review site for growing your reputation. Be present on multiple review sites, as many as you can. In this way, you have far more sources that you will be able to control.
Finally, if you get a fake review or a bad review from a competitor that could hurt your business, do everything in your power to remove that review. Follow their processes. For instance, some of these sites let you submit things in a manner that they can potentially remove once proven it’s fake. But if they don’t, or won’t, don’t let it bother you too much. Continue asking for positive reviews. These will be able to push the bad reviews down and they will eventually get buried. And after all, having a few bad ones will only make your business look more authentic.
Utilize Social Listening
Here is another way of deepening insights into your brand’s reputation. Social listening is the process of identifying potential growth opportunities, then acting accordingly via social media monitoring. A social media management software, like the one in this Lately review, can do this by helping brands create, manage, as well as track their content through various social media platforms.
This entails monitoring conversations made online that point to topics of interest. But this goes beyond collecting information. Social listening lets you learn what the data means as well. Therefore, aside from knowing who said what, where, when, what context, and what impact, it also gives you the why. This is the best way you can be proactive and can easily recognize future patterns and trends.
Have Tools for Real-Time Alerts
Aside from monitoring your reputation online, consider utilizing a tool that gives you options for real-time alerts. In this way, anytime your brand or business is mentioned online, you will know right away what was said and the potential impact it may have on your brand.
If it is a positive brand mention, grab this opportunity to engage with your customer’s enthusiasm. Consequently, if it appears to be some misinformation about your business or a competitor does something that could harm your reputation, you will know right away. Knowing what happens in real-time is priceless. This gives you a higher chance to respond to the situation in a positive manner and avoid further consequences.
Monitoring Outside Your Brand Name
You may be too caught up in monitoring and protecting your brand that you fail to realize this isn’t the only thing that matters. There are other factors to take into consideration that will greatly affect your brand reputation. Some of these are your competitors, industry trends, news, buzzwords, hashtags, press releases, campaigns, products, and services, among others.
Brands sometimes tend to ignore the crucial role these factors play in their brand’s reputation. A particular marketing campaign for instance could have some serious negative effects on the public perception of your business. Other times, the company CEO might let his or her guard down and start tweeting recklessly, requiring the company to do some drastic damage control.
By tracking all these queries, you will be provided with a larger picture of how your brand is performing to the public. In turn, you will be able to know your strengths and weaknesses. You will also have the opportunity to identify potential threats and opportunities.
Conduct a Brand Reputation Analysis
Not only will brand reputation analysis give you a competitive edge as an influencer, but it also lets you know how the general public feels about your business or brand. So now you can immediately analyze the top companies in the market and lay out growth perspectives for your business.
Not only that, but it can also increase your income. Prophet’s 2020 Brand Relevance Index shows that brands having outstanding reputations also have revenue growth that goes beyond the average revenue growth of the S&P 500 by 230%. The S&P 500 has 500 of the largest company brands that are listed on United States stock exchanges. They have a market cap of over 40 trillion.
Monitoring and Improving Brand Reputation = Successful Growth Adaptation
Business owners must realize that reputation management remains an integral part of public relations or PR. And successful PR requires a wide range of skill sets. These include crisis and reputation management, media training, and even PR advertising. All these things must come together to put your business in a positive light with your target audience.
Having a guide to monitoring and improving brand reputation guarantees that you reflect your brand. Plus, it helps with the crisis since you know things can blow up. Thus, the need for reputation management services.
They exist to help make sure that if such crises come up that can potentially harm your company’s reputation, they have the skills needed to come through. So never wait until you get to a crisis point. Certain measures must be put in place early on so that it would be so much easier to manage and troubleshoot in the future.
Speaking of managing your reputation on social media, you must get a trusted social media management software, such as the one in this Postfity review, that helps you with your brand’s feature post scheduling, social media account management across all platforms, and monitoring your audience engagements—all in real-time. Putting all these things in the equation will not only improve your brand’s customer acquisition but will also help you launch new products and services online.
Now, if you’re interested in establishing a brand community, check out our article “Brand Community: Definition, Examples, and Strategies.”