10 online reputation management commandments

Sep 17 by Russell Dean

Your brand’s reputation and your company’s reputation are things that are built mostly online nowadays. That’s why online reputation management is crucial. We live in an era that values and encourages criticism, because it stimulates competition between companies. This competition results in companies striving to better themselves and the product/service they offer.

Although the online world is in a constant shift, these 10 commandments will help you stay on top of your online reputation, by preventing failures, and building a solid foundation for your online presence.

1. Earn respect

If there is one aspect you can’t skip in a successful online reputation management strategy, then this is it! Earning the trust and respect of an audience is hard, while losing these two values is extremely easy. Get people to respect your brand, and your company, and you’ll be able to grow as a business, without fear of criticism.

2. Embrace transparency

Avoiding a question about your brand, that’s on everyone’s mind, won’t get you too far. Embrace transparency by confronting the criticism, and make the changes that your audience expects you to make. This will make your brand more easy to relate to, and you’ll get free publicity by including your audience in a decision making process.

3. Keep an eye on public feedback

Stats analysis is an excellent feedback provider, but when social media posts give you unaltered feedback directly from people that are interested in your brand, don’t miss the opportunity of turning a potential client, into a loyal customer!

4. Be prompt and professional

Don’t allow criticism to undermine your professionalism. Answer negative customer feedback in a timely manner, and assure the client that you’ve taken his comment into consideration, and that necessary measures will be taken.

5. Don’t ignore criticism

If one of your business decisions has gotten you a lot of negative feedback, don’t ignore it. If that particular decision has split your audience in two, ask them to provide opinions and suggestions. You’ll learn how to take constructive criticism, and how to use it to improve your business strategy.

6. Make sure Google is on your side

When someone uses the most popular search engine available to find you, and Google’s first results put you in a negative light, then you’re in trouble. You have to look at Google’s first page as the main creator of first impressions. Make sure they are positive!

7. Identify your critics

Although it might seem like all the criticism comes from competitors or passer-bys, you have to learn how to spot your critics. If the large majority of your critics are within your target audience, then you have to make significant adjustments in how you get your message across.

8. Deal with those who maliciously damage your brand’s reputation

Sometimes criticism isn’t constructive, and it comes from a place of malice with unjustifiable motives. If people are damaging your brand’s reputation using false information, then take legal action, and cut the problem at its root.

9. Don’t repeat errors

Look at each error and each experience as lessons. Once you’ve encountered a situation that made you lose financial resources, or that’s damaged your reputation, mark it as a “Don’t”, and avoid making the same mistake in the future.

10. Turn to the professionals

If your efforts seem to be inefficient, then you should turn to professionals for help. A well-structured online reputation management strategy can save you a lot of time and money, while helping you create, maintain, or restore your brand’s reputation!