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Every brand wants to make a good impression online, but simply having a standout website or social media presence isn’t enough. These days, everyone has an opinion on just about everything, and customers are savvy enough to know when a brand is being genuine or hiding an ugly truth. In order to shape the opinions of existing and future customers, it is crucial to invest in online reputation management (ORM) to create a positive perception of your brand or business.
The Connection Between ORM and SEO
As customers increasingly turn to search engines for research, it is essential to ensure that the best and most positive results appear when your brand is searched. The top search results heavily influence how people think about your brand, so it is important to take ownership of the message being shown to your audience. ORM is a multi-channel approach that prevents and resolves any issues that could damage your brand’s reputation.
Factors That Contribute to ORM
ORM involves a combination of owned media, paid media, earned media, and shared media. Owned media includes employee and customer stories, user-generated content (UGC), reviews, webinars, and brand-created content. Paid media involves sponsored social posts, lead generation, affiliate programs, and native advertising. Earned media includes media relations, influencer marketing, and PR. Shared media involves community service and partnerships, co-branding campaigns, and organic social media posts.
Why Is Online Reputation Management Important?
Reputation management should be an ongoing approach to building a healthy brand online, but many companies don’t act until the damage has already been done. Recovering your online reputation is incredibly challenging, as a bad experience with your business can quickly lead to negative reviews and a decrease in sales. Swift action can prevent turning off new customers and even retain unhappy existing customers. Additionally, monitoring brand mentions and reviews can help you understand your customers and address bigger issues before they affect your marketing campaigns.
Changing The Narrative
When negative perceptions take hold, it becomes challenging to recover your online reputation. By actively monitoring your brand mentions and reviews, you can change the narrative before long-lasting negative perceptions develop. Responding to and resolving customer complaints can help build loyalty and prevent the loss of customers. Taking swift action can prevent sales from dropping and retain both new and existing customers.
Understanding Your Customers
Having a finger on the pulse of chatter about your brand online is crucial to understanding your customers. Spending money on marketing campaigns that don’t address bigger issues can lead to ineffective messaging and a waste of resources. By monitoring brand mentions and reviews, you can ensure that your marketing campaigns align with the concerns and sentiments of your customers.
Getting Ahead of Issues
Online reputation lasts forever, and countless businesses and individuals have learned this the hard way. Without online reputation management, you can quickly end up in a lose-lose situation. However, with proactive measures, you can keep control of your brand’s story in search results and plan ahead for any possible problems. By investing in ORM, you can prevent and resolve issues before they damage your brand’s reputation.
How Is Online Reputation Management Different From PR?
While reputation management and public relations (PR) are often used interchangeably, they involve different strategies. ORM focuses solely on maintaining a positive image online for the brand, while PR plays a more mutually beneficial role between a brand and other organizations, particularly the media. PR efforts aim to provide information about specific aspects of the brand, such as new products or services. Pairing both ORM and PR can help a business cover brand building and public-facing marketing.
Social Media Marketing and Online Reputation Management
Online reviews, especially on social media, are difficult for brands to control. Managing and responding to comments on social media is an essential part of ORM. Staying active and engaged in social conversations about your brand is crucial. Using monitoring tools like Mention, BrandWatch, Sprout Social, and BuzzSumo can help you stay on top of comments and sentiment analysis. By responding quickly and resolving any issues, you can effectively manage your brand’s reputation on social media.
In conclusion, online reputation management is crucial for shaping the perception of your brand and ensuring that it accurately reflects the company image you want to maintain. By investing in ORM, you can attract new customers, retain existing ones, and take control of your brand’s story online. Stay proactive, monitor brand mentions and reviews, and address any issues swiftly to maintain a positive online reputation.