Back in the early days of the internet, the majority of communications between businesses and consumers were a one-way street. Businesses would produce consumable content built for websites, like blogs, and put out other messaging that was consumed, but the opportunities for individuals to respond and to help shape the practices of those organizations were extremely limited in number.
That’s all changed in recent years, as the advent of outlets such as social media has fundamentally altered the communications dynamic online. Presently, consumers and customers can proactively engage with a business, even if it’s unsolicited. Social media has fundamentally changed the way that an online reputation is built, shaped, and maintained.
The internet has become so ubiquitous, so critical, and so foundational in the building of almost any business that every organization needs to do whatever it can to make sure that it has a positive online reputation. Failure to do so can lead to cataclysmic damage to an organization, and ultimately to that brand’s downfall if their reputation suffers too much and for too long. Nuvi is a team of professionals that helps to build positive online presences for clients in many ways, and below we’re going to provide some ideas for how to build and maintain a strong online reputation.
1. Be Present
The first thing you need to do as an organization when building an online reputation is to be present. If you don’t have profiles on social media or other outlets where your target audience is active and expects to find you, those who have comments, complaints, or feedback for you will not be noticed by your organization. Instead, they’ll post positive and negative responses about your company to other users in different places. That’s still going to happen to an extent, but if you have online locations or profiles where you can be found, you’re centralizing a lot of that content in one place, making it easier to manage.
2. Be Engaging
Online content needs to be something that people actually want to read. More specifically, that content needs to be useful and informative. It also needs to be engaging. If online visitors get both of those benefits from whatever you’re publishing, you’re taking positive steps towards building a strong online reputation. If done correctly, you may even get to the point where people look forward to what you’re going to post next. If you’re only publishing generalized marketing-based content that doesn’t touch the lives and experiences of customers and potential customers, it’s going to turn people off.
Although, this example is of a tv show character, Disney was following the principles of providing their audience with engaging content that apply across industries. See these principle in action with Baby Yoda.
3. Be Responsive
When people give compliments – in any context – they like to know that those compliments are appreciated. That’s how it works in personal relationships, and also in business. It’s equally important for customers to know that businesses they engage with hear their complaints when things go wrong. No matter what industry your business operates in, this is likely to happen to you—whether the complaints are legitimate or not, in your opinion. Regardless, the most critical aspect of building a positive online reputation is that your organization is responsive to both compliments and complaints. These responses need to be organic as well, as people will instantly recognize a canned response. Genuinely thank people for their kind words and engage authentically with those who have legitimate complaints or concerns.
4. Be Forthright
This idea for building a strong online reputation deals mostly with situations where people are unhappy with your product or service, as 54% of customers prefer social media for their customer service needs. When people reach out with concerns or complaints, there’s nothing more frustrating than when they are provided with a classic non-answer—or even worse, when the response is something along the lines of, “That’s our policy.” All that tells the customer is that they’re not really being heard, and can lead to more negativity being spread. If your organization made a mistake, admit it, discuss it, and take whatever steps are possible to make that situation right.
How each company handles a mistake or crisis varies according to the brand and circumstance. Check out how Netflix dealt with a crisis back in 2019.
5. Be Consistent
In order to build a strong online reputation, you need to be consistent in your approach. When people engage with your organization online, they need to be able to have an idea of what to expect. Not being consistent in the way you present yourself, respond to concerns, or serve your customers can lead to confusion, inequitable results, and can cause harm to your overall brand. Establish your message, put people and resources in place to spread that message, and continue to manage this aspect of your operation closely.
Learn from three Pop Stars reputation technics.
How Nuvi Can Help
The bottom line with regards to your online reputation is that it can be a huge driver of sales and revenue, or it can have the opposite effect. This is not something that necessarily lends itself to a template that anyone can follow at any time. A positive online reputation generally involves dialogue, dynamics, and decisions that need to be determined within the context of each individual situation. Fortunately, the effort behind building an online reputation also leads to opportunities for data, which Nuvi can help you analyze and manage.
Much of an online reputation is dependent on being in the know about comments, messages, posts, and reviews that mention your brand. Nuvi can help you get a wider view by showing you content that @mentions you or doesn't. We will help you build a cogent, scalable strategy that will help boost your online reputation and loyalty in your customer base. We’ve been helping our clients build their online reputations and brands for years, and we’d like to hear more about your story so that we can help bring it to the people who want to hear it and will engage with it.
Contact us today to get started.