10 FAQ About Reputation Management
The internet doesn’t forget anything, which is why reputation management is important for everyone but most especially businesses. A few negative reviews and your overall star rating can take a serious turn, costing you potential clients.
As reputation management covers a variety of topics, many have questions as to what exactly reputation management entails and how they should go about it. So, here are 10 frequently asked questions about reputation management:
1. What is reputation management?
We should first go over the definition of reputation management. Reputation management is the practice of influencing how people see you or your brand. In other words, it is the effort of polishing your image so you can ensure your first impression on prospective customers is positive.
For businesses, reputation management is now almost solely digital as consumers rely on online reviews to make purchase decisions. Therefore, business owners need to focus on:
- Review generation
- Review monitoring
- Review responses
- Social media posts
- Listings management
2. Does reputation management include repairing a damaged image?
Absolutely! However, many companies make the mistake of waiting until they need damage control to deploy a reputation management strategy. Implementing a reputation management system in the beginning is much easier than trying to expunge a negative review history. This goes for anything posted online, such as a viral video. Like we said before, the internet doesn’t forget.
For example, not too long ago United Airlines was under fire after a video leaked of their employees violently removing a passenger from their flight. After the video went viral, the president released a statement explaining why the employees acted the way they did. But people weren’t buying it. They became even more enraged that rather than taking responsibility, he was making excuses. Because of this incident, the airlines lost $1 billion worth of value.
3. Is reputation management proactive or reactive?
While reputation management can be used to repair a damaged image, it is more effective as a proactive measure. Otherwise, businesses will need to dedicate potentially years to rebranding their image and improving the customer perception.
The proactive approach to reputation management involves review generation and monitoring, meaning you continuously invite customers to leave you a review on the sites that matter most to you. For many, this includes Google, Yelp, and Facebook. Why? Studies show that 72% of customers won’t make a purchase decision until they’ve read online reviews. The same goes for choosing a physician.
By establishing a system that handles review generation, you can build your reputation from the ground up and have complete control over your image.
4. Does reputation management include social media?
Yes! Customers also like to use social media to either promote a business or air out their grievances. That means you also need social media accounts to monitor conversations regarding your company. If someone leaves a nasty comment, you can quickly engage and resolve the issue. On the other hand, if someone leaves a raving review, you can promote it on your channels. It’s free–so why not!
5. Can you manage your reputation by yourself?
Yes you can. However, as your brand starts to grow you may get overwhelmed quickly. Reputation management is relatively straightforward for an individual, but businesses either should dedicate an employee or system to the task.
6. What are the biggest challenges of reputation management?
Consistency is typically the biggest challenge for those trying to deploy a reputation management strategy manually. Whether you are maintaining your image through social media posts, reviews, or videos, you need a consistent schedule. Otherwise, you may end up with long dry spells without new content.
For consumers, they like to see relatively recent reviews when researching a product or brand. Anything older than a few months seems outdated. The same goes for social media influencers. Many keep a strict posting schedule to ensure they are engaging their current audience and stay on the radar of prospective followers.
7. What are the benefits of reputation management?
Reputation management allows you to control your image and increase your customer reach. Let’s take review generation for example:
By consistently generating customer reviews, you increase the probability of attracting new customers, as studies have proven that consumers prefer user-generated content over traditional marketing. Studies also show that people hold online reviews in the same esteem as word-of-mouth or suggestions from friends and family. Reviews also improve your search engine optimization so you appear higher on the results page of search engines.
8. What if I don’t have a reputation management plan?
Start developing a plan as soon as possible! Everyone needs a reputation management plan, regardless if you own a business or not. Why do you think so many job postings ask you to link your social media profile? Because they want to see how you present yourself online.
However, companies have much more incentive to launch a reputation management plan as they can significantly increase their traffic, reach, and revenue.
9. Who might need help managing their reputation?
If you own a business, you should seriously consider finding a reputation management solution that automates review generation and monitoring. Even if your business is small, a management solution will save you so much time and busy work.
That being said, any medium to large company should already have a reputation management solution in place, whether it’s software or a specialist.
10. What is reputation management software?
Reputation management software automates review generation and monitoring and listings management. It aggregates data from monitored review sites into one universal dashboard so companies don’t have to navigate through multiple sites. This allows businesses to accurately assess their performance and determine areas of improvement.
Without reputation management software, businesses have to personally prompt customer reviews and manually monitor when they receive new reviews. This is a huge waste of time, money, and effort.
With Expert Reputation, you can automate review link invites to capture reviews on the sites that matter most to you.
And there you have it! Now you know the fundamentals of reputation management. If you have any questions or want to learn more about our software, be sure to contact us!