Brand reputation management or company reputation management is the process of monitoring and improving the perception people have of that brand. Some benefits of effective brand reputation management include; higher customer NPS, increased retention and higher profits.
Why is Brand Reputation Management Important?
As a brand you need to be trusted in order to get sales.
If no one trusts you, your business is going to struggle right off the bat.
Imagine you’re a local take out restaurant selling pizza. Over the course of 6 months your business is booming, your sales are great and just through word of mouth your customer base is growing.
Then you get hit with a 1 star review. Someone claiming their pizza was late, cold and the delivery driver was rude.
Your sales take a turn for the worst and now you’re going to have to come back from that negative hit you received that may or may not have been fair (or true!).
The bigger you are, the more important your reputation is. Potentially, you’ve got more at stake.
Of course, there’s sales that you need to maintain but also your team’s jobs and their wellbeing are important.
This is why your company reputation management needs to be given such importance.
Heard it on the Grapevine…
Back before tech boomed we would only need to worry about our presence in the newspapers or on television.
Now we’ve got the internet and suddenly the task of managing your reputation feels impossible with all these new avenues to monitor.
However, despite there being more that you need to keep on top of - having the internet to your disposal also means you now have more control over how customers see you and your brand. But only if you’re proactive about it.
5 Ways To Protect Your Brand Online
1. Be Mindful of your Media Presence
Everything said online can be remembered and saved now. With the rise of ‘cancel culture’ and mass brand boycotting, whether you agree with it or not, you need to be mindful of what gets seen online.
Ever since, the brand has seriously struggled to maintain composure in an industry that is making efforts to cater to customers of all sizes. In fact, CEO Mike Jeffries ended up losing his job shortly after the comments.
Be mindful in interviews and know that even personal appearances from you and your staff members will affect your business.
2. Have a Good SEO Strategy
Aim to improve your rankings legitimately through an SEO strategy as much as possible.
Being visible in the SERPs is one of the most effective ways to become trustworthy with searchers.
Users will see that as not only are you at the top off the first page, but also that Google deemed you reliable and competent enough to secure that special spot of ‘Position 0’.
3. Consider PR Help
PR firms centre their entire world around making you look good.
They can also help get you into events that would help your public image such as awards ceremonies and speaking conferences within your industry.
They’re worth considering when you’re becoming a big name and feel overwhelmed. Or, if you’re still fairly small - think about getting the help of a PR consultant sometimes to keep on top of your public image.
However, you should doctor them to make sure they’re a good company overall and don’t clash with your company ethos.
Ultimately, you want a company who is excited to make the world a better place and not interested in working for shady clients who just need their misconduct glossing over.
4. Have Conversations with your Customers
Be proactive in gaining good reviews and respond positively when dealing with bad ones, particularly on social media.
Don’t respond emotionally. On one hand, there’s passion for your product and a sincere need to improve. THEN THERE’S RESPONDING TO SOMEONE LIKE THIS!!!
Ask your customers and followers for genuine feedback. You will no doubt get a mixed bag however it expresses your earnest desire for you to grow and adapt as a company. And responders will respect that.
Open up a line of communication that can result in productive moves forward and potential future customer satisfaction.
Don’t cheat your way to a 5-star review - honesty is always better than a bunch of fake reviews. Your potential paying customers will see right through them.
5. Keep up with The Market
Keep an eye on where the market is headed - if you don’t get on board a new trend you might end up being frozen out and forgotten.
People won’t be name-dropping the company that is outdated and not catering to an ever-changing market.
Social Listening Tools to Help you get Started
There are some tools you can use to keep on top of what’s being said about you and your products online. Here are some we recommend:
Awario is a social listening tool that’s effective for brand reputation management and real-time social monitoring. The software searches the internet for any mentions of your brand, and it notifies you as conversations progress.
This gives you an opportunity to participate in and amplify these discussions. Users can also track how mentions of their brand grow over time, and there’s a feature that sorts mentions by degree of potential impact.
You can monitor your keywords in any language, and see if comments are positive, negative, or neutral.
BrandMentions puts you in control of your brand’s reputation and provides a means to shape public narratives. Users get instant email notifications any time their brand is mentioned, and there’s a sentiment analysis feature that sorts the positive reactions from the negative.
This gives you a chance to boost positive mentions and address the negative ones immediately.
BrandMentions also identifies which platforms your audience use when talking about your products, and you can connect with them by maintaining a presence on those platforms.
Audiense simplifies brand reputation management by offering companies an in-depth understanding of their audiences and how the public interacts with the brand.
The software uses machine learning tools to take customer segmentation beyond age, location, and gender; and users get deeper analytics about their target market. You can create tailored audiences and separate your customers into segments using 175+ different attributes.
These insights empower you to carry out large-scale and high-performance marketing campaigns, and you can set up ultra-targeted social listening for your audience segments.
Brand24 is an online reputation management tool that does it all. You can track comments about your brand, monitor online reviews across online platforms, measure how effective your marketing campaigns are, and get deep insights on social media hashtags.
Mentions can be separated into segments based on positive, negative, and neutral sentiments; and users get instant notifications for negative online comments.
Brand24 also provides automated daily and weekly reports about how the public engages with your brand, including data on likes, shares, and comments.
Other tools include: Sprout Social and Google Alerts
How Can We Help?
Thinking that your brand’s reputation needs a boost? Why don’t you book a call with us, and we will pair you with a great team who can move you forward in the right direction.
Not quite ready to commit? Check out our training courses for lots of insider tips and tricks to get you ahead of the rest.