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How Valuable is Online Reputation Management – and What You Should Do About It

Ever had a customer leave a negative review about your business? What were your first steps to remedy the situation?

Reviews can be a double-edged for businesses. If you neglect to address negative reviews, your business can suffer from the reception of other customers. On the other hand, positive reviews can reinforce your brand and attract more customers. This is what online reputation management means.

Online reputation management allows you to harness customer feedback to the advantage of your business. However, it’s not as simple as responding to reviews left by your customers—online reputation management requires a great deal of deliberation. This makes ORM training as important as the strategy itself for your business.

Here are a few best practices for effective online reputation management:

1. Prompt responses to customer reviews

online reputation management google reviews

According to survey, 72% of customers won’t take action before reading reviews. This means reviews are often the basis of a customer’s purchasing decision. If a customer sees a negative review on Yelp and the business didn’t respond to it, this gives the impression the business doesn’t show concern over their customers. Responding promptly to customer reviews should be at the top of the to-learn list when training your staff for online reputation management.

2. Building your presence on all website properties

facebook reviews

At a minimum, your business should have the following: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Directory Listings. These serve as your online properties, and optimizing accounts for each of these helps reinforce your presence. It’s important, however, to choose online properties that relate to your industry. For instance, if you’re running a restaurant, make sure you have verified your listing on Yelp.

3. Amplify your personal brand

personal brand

If you’re top-level management, your personal branding can have an impact on your business. This is why online reputation management should also be applied to individual accounts of executives. Customers can easily associate specific individuals to a brand; think of Bill Gates to Microsoft or Steve Jobs to Apple.

With proper ORM training, you can set the protect your business from negative feedback while solidifying your online presence.

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Why You Should Care About What Customers Say

A negative tweet, a low star rating, or a bad review – these are just some of the things many businesses dread when looking at their online reputation.  

It’s understandable, though. 

Anything that gets published or posted is likely to become a reference for today’s customers when they’re searching for a particular service or product. Statistics even attest to the power of customer reviews:

  • 95% of customers read online reviews before buying. 
  • 93% of local customers gauge if a business is good or bad through reviews
  • Reviews can boost sales by 18%. 

These highlight one thing – your online reputation is a ticket to getting more business. 

Your Brand Can Come Up in Different Conversations

The internet has evolved throughout the years. It’s become more than a source of information. People talk online. So, think of the internet as an online gossip place. 

This means your brand isn’t excluded from coming up in conversations. If you don’t keep track of what customers are saying about your business – whether it’s good or bad – you’re giving the competition leverage over you. 

But, don’t worry. Getting online reputation management training can help you navigate through conversations and determine how best to respond to bad press. 

Your Reputation Influences the Purchasing Decision of Customers

One bad review might make a customer think twice about getting your business. Now, imagine if you have 10 negative reviews. 

Customers often look first at review websites, such as Google My Business, Yelp, or Facebook Business pages. If a customer had complaints about one of your employees, this can reflect poorly on your brand. In the end, this can cost you business. 

Good Online Reputation Can Benefit You in the Long Run

Your online reputation answers the most important question by customers, “Should I trust you?”

When customers feel conflicted about whether or not to get your service or product, they turn to what other people are saying about you. These perceptions will shape your brand and will matter greatly. 

Remember, your digital footprint doesn’t disappear. 

Ready to Take Control of Your Reputation?

According to Hansgrohe Asia, online reputation management isn’t rocket science. Start by educating your team on how to handle reviews and respond to customers. Then build good press around your brand through forums, blog posts, and news sites. 

Once you get good traction for your online reputation, don’t stop. Continue improving and monitoring.