Any person or business that has an online presence will have critics, no matter how much effort is put into please as many people and customers as possible. It is just a fact of internet life that there will always be a few critics who feel compelled to express displeasure, often as vocally and visually as can be done in an attempt to gain attention. Reputation management has become an essential part of maintaining a web presence, keeping critics at bay – and learning something in the process.
Embrace My Critics – Really?!
Embracing might be stretching it a little bit; however, critics actually serve an important purpose. Accepting that there will always be critics and acknowledging what is being said is an important part of maintaining a good online reputation. When such naysayers are in the minority, it is easy to just avoid any comments they may leave on a website. It is better to look at the situation as an opportunity to learn something, to look at a situation and see if improvement does need to happen. There is always something to learn from a critic, even if that lesson is simply that you can’t please every person.
In the realm of managing one’s online reputation, it is important to look at both sides of the customer equation where one of two lessons is likely to be learned:
- How to interpret legitimate concerns that need attention.
- How to handle such situation so a few negative remarks don’t harm a company’s reputation.
Control What Is Seen
Once something is posted online, it is pretty difficult at best to get it removed. Researching the problem and contacting the person who wrote the content can sometimes help; however, in most cases such negative content will remain. Another approach must be used to try to get that content from being seen so easily.
This is all a part of practicing good reputation management – by controlling the visibility of negative content. It really isn’t hard to do; however, it demands both time and effort to build a management strategy and follow it. Through careful monitoring and action when necessary, it is possible for a company to learn of any negative comments and attempt to handle the situation in a positive fashion. Negative comments cannot be removed; however, they can be lowered in the rankings by posting positive customer comments instead.
Develop A Good Management Strategy
Good reputation development and management does not happen on its own. Strategy development is a prime concern in to keep things under control. The best strategies begin with building brand recognition and trust with consumers which is normally achievable with good business practices, good use of social media, and good knowledge of SEO. Once a name becomes familiar and gathers a following, the concern then becomes keeping that following growing by management and promotion.
What does protecting and managing a reputation involve? Research – to find out what is being said about a company or brand – and troubleshooting to prevent any sparking fires that could escalate. Any company should regularly search online for their name and use alerts to keep track of mentions – and then tackle each negative comment individually. Offering solutions for individual concerns does much for a brand’s trust and reputation, as does learning how to avoid mistakes. It all makes up a strategy to reduce any negativity from the web.
Some often-overlooked ways to find more positive reinforcement is to ask for feedback and testimonials, publish press releases, and increase the amount of good content that is posted to the web. More good content reduces the percentage of any bad content, making it less significant and more difficult to find.
By monitoring what is seen online about a company, the best reputation management can be achieved. It is possible to have critical comments not as visible – and is best achieved by good business practices and a genuine concern about keeping company credibility high!