If handled improperly or ineffectively, damage to your reputation can cause your business to fail. For that reason, reputation management is a skill that every burgeoning business owner ought to spend the time to acquire. Staring with the information and guidance presented below is a great way to begin this key process.
Follow up with any customer complaints or questions.
This is the case if your business is on the larger size. They need to feel like they matter to you. There are systems that you can use to help you do this. You can also ask them to provide feedback on purchases they have made.
One of the primary ways you can manage your reputation is to claim your business brand online and take charge of the content about you. Use either KnowEm.com, UserNameCheck.com or NameChk.com to locate every online instance of your business name popping up. You only need to use one, but any of them can let you know if anyone out there is misrepresenting your business or speaking ill of you.
To keep a more careful eye on your business reputation, try setting up an alert system.
This is a daily email you receive that lets you know when your company has been mentioned online. They do cost some money and take a short time to set up, but they can give you plenty of useful information.
Cultivating a professional tone in your social media accounts makes a big difference in how you are perceived. It’s a big part of your business, so it must be watched over carefully. You want to appear as a professional that is still accessible as a person.
You set the expectations of your customers. This means to be upfront with your customers. If there’s a mistake that gets made, you need to know how to handle it well. You’ll develop a good reputation by always being as transparent as possible.
When people give you negative reviews, you should try your best to address them without admitting any fault. As soon as you admit responsibility for things, you will look incompetent in the eyes of your customers. It is best to apologize for their dissatisfaction, and not for any incident in particular.
If you have a company that made a mistake and it hurt the customers, don’t try covering it up. Customers will realize. Admit your mistake, apologize, and move on. This will lead to forgiveness and you can then move on.
If your company has a negative review online, do not overreact.
One of the worst things a company can do is respond to a negative comment or complaint with anger. Also, do not try to retaliate against whoever posted the complaint. These types of reaction are not going to solve the problem and will only draw more attention to all the negativity.
Watch what you share online. You don’t know how others will use it later, so be careful. Even if you just have a few people accessing the social media accounts you have, it’s important to exercise caution.
Even if a customer contacts you with an unfounded complaint against your company, be sure not to dismiss his complaint so readily. You should always acknowledge and thank the customer for taking time to contact you. Offer to investigate further. Offer to give him something extra for his troubles. This will lessen the likelihood that he will bad-mouth your business around his social circle.
Make sure your company name appears prominently on the most important pages on your website. It should not be awkward looking or out of place. Just be sure to have an attractive logo tastefully placed on the page. It’s also a good idea to have the names of important people in your company listed on main pages. This fosters accountability and helps your page gain credibility.
Look for the potential good in any online conflict. It is far easier to learn from your own experiences than to simply listen and read about resolving online conflicts. After a conflict is over, seek out the learning opportunities it presented. If the conflict caught the attention of people you would like to know, use it as a springboard to improve your own online social and business circles.
Always respond to client input on social media channels. A quick way to lost the faith of your customers is to ignore their questions and suggestions. This gives you a reputation of not caring or of being evasive in order to hide something. Even if it’s just a quick one-sentence response, keep it positive, useful and timely.
Make sure you regularly monitor your social network accounts, and keep passwords secret.
Nothing will tarnish your fine reputation faster than viral rumors and accusations. Be certain that someone checks all comments, tweets etc. that pertain to your business regularly. Respond professionally and swiftly, no matter what the nature of the content.
Keep track of what people say about your business online. Do frequent searches, check relative forums, and take a peek at social media. Whatever the nature of the discussions, you can always join in. This will lead to more credibility with your business.
Manage the reputation of your business by gladly accepting constructive criticism. If the customer had a valid complaint, fix the situation and thank them for making you aware of it. Instead of pushing bad issues aside, deal with these business issues directly!
The reputation of your company is one of your most important assets.
You need to protect your brand. This is done by properly optimizing your content on your website and monitoring search results regularly. If any negativity shows up on the web searches, you need to handle it as quickly as possible.
When a businessperson’s reputation takes a hit, the consequences can be quite serious. Knowing how to dodge the bullets and buoy a faltering reputation is essential to ongoing success. By keeping these tips handy at all times, it should be possible for any businessperson to navigate temporarily rough waters and recover fully.