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Reputation Development over Online Reputation Management

Brand image development or damage control?
online reputation management, reputation development

Almost every brand functioning online is now aware of reputation management. Many are spending hard cash to get their brand reputation managed and damage control handled by professional firms. I have considerable experience in working in this reputation management sector, working on brands having a global following.

During my experience on these assignments, I have noted a strange obsession among brands to jump into damage control mode at the first sign of trouble, rather than focusing on building up the reputation of the brand over time. If you work on brand development rather than simply managing it on an ad hoc basis, you have better chances of ensuring that your brand stays protected.

Debajyoti Banerjee, Founder & CEO, Seven Boats

Focus on brand reputation development

After all, when you develop and nurture relationships with customers, the goodwill you earn in the process will help you tide over crises. Customers will stick to you during these times, because you have developed a formidable reputation. Before we talk about how you can go about developing the reputation of your brand, here are some other reasons why you should do it.

Genuine Positive reviews matter for brand reputation development!

For starters, around 70% of people who make a purchase online rely on reviews posted by experts as well as by other laymen users. Reviews and opinion forums have stamped their presence online because people make decisions based on how the reviews shape up for a brand. Positive reviews for a brand are essential. Remember that these are not reviews written by content writers on the payroll of a brand. These are genuine reviews penned down by actual buyers or technical experts of the particular field.

Deliver really good products & services

For brand reputation development, you cannot work your way around them or manipulate them! The only thing you can do is pull up your socks and deliver better products and services. Another concern here is the role of the customer service team. Your brand’s customer care network often makes or breaks a customer’s mind to buy or not. Reviews almost always cover a word or two about the customer care team, making it imperative that you work on having a strong work ethic here.

Focus on user experience

Now, on to the technical areas! Google is increasingly becoming a user-dictated medium. Anything that is convenient for the end user is the Gospel to Google. A brand that commands a good word of mouth publicity online, has customers who speak well of it and gathers positive reviews and feedback by the dozens will find itself on the cream of the SERP status. There are no two ways about it! You want to do well on Google; you need a commanding reputation online to achieve your goal.

Quick fixes will not work in long run

I have given you enough reasons to develop your brand reputation online and not just worry about managing it through quick fixes and patchworks. In the process, I have also discussed a couple of ways in which you can achieve a good online reputation, like pulling up your customer care team for better service. Other measures include being active on social media.

Keep a strong social listening practice.

Social media network, especially Facebook, is the new grouse box for customers! Anyone and everyone with a grudge on a brand go on these forums and post their complaints, sometimes with the docket number of a complaint registered offline. You need to address them quickly and promptly. Do not let these complaints and negativity to thrive. The most they remain unresolved, the more dust it kicks up.

Ask for reviews openly.

Just as you would work on resolving problems through the social media networks, how about getting satisfied customers to endorse your brand on their pages? In fact, after resolving an issue, you can politely ask the concerned user about a thumbs-up online through a comment to let others know about the problem being resolved! It is a positive move and one that users will not refuse, generally speaking.

Take care of your customers for reputation development.

However, according to me, the best way to develop online reputation is to care for your customers and clients genuinely. When you do that, the earnestness in your effort shines through. You will find some move or the other to reach out to them and engage them with your brand. It is not tough to do! In fact, developing reputation will automatically take care of the reputation management bit.

Till next time!

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