A positive reputation is, to many in the digital age, considered more valuable than money. We live in a world where almost everyone has an online reputation whether they like it or not.
Your online reputation or that of your business is composed of every mention of your brand across the internet, and online reputation management (ORM) is an industry that revolves around protecting it.
Considering that more than 84% of people trust the information they find online as much, if not more than, they trust in-person recommendations, ORM has become a booming industry. Unfortunately, many customers only learn about it when they’re in the middle of an ORM crisis.
An ORM crisis occurs when negative information, whether it is true or false, hits the internet and begins impacting what people think of your brand. In a world where 91% of adults turn to the internet for information before spending their money, just one negative link can dramatically impact your bottom line. What happens when someone shares that link? It multiplies. Just one negative item can go viral, resulting in a crisis that you’re probably not be prepared to handle if you don’t have online protection.
How to Protect Yourself
Proactive reputation management is the best way to protect yourself from an ORM crisis before it strikes. This means creating an ORM plan or enlisting an ORM team to deploy an online protection campaign to safeguard your brand and build a virtual barrier around it.
Online alerts from a service such as Google Alerts can monitor the web for new content regarding you and your brand, and when negative content arises, you can take steps to minimize damage immediately.
Basic elements of a proactive ORM campaign might include:
- Comprehensive social media management.
- Regular customer interaction.
- Quality content creation.
- Active review management.
- Online content monitoring.
- Website creation and management.
There’s more to it, of course, but just these steps can fill the front page of Google with positive content that accurately reflects your brand. If you keep your social media accounts, website(s), and business profiles on sites like Yelp and LinkedIn active, they can push down negative content as it arises, so you don’t have to start from square one in the middle of an ORM crisis.
Think of this online protection like a wall of sandbags to protect a home against a coming flood. They might not eliminate the online reputation crisis completely, but they’ll protect your most valuable asset while you take further steps to get the situation under control.
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