Maintaining a brand's reputation is getting harder for businesses in the modern digital age, where anybody can remark anything regarding a firm. The internet has allowed customers to express unhappiness with a service or good.
Future customers use their feedback to make purchases. A new customer, for instance, will look for feedback and reviews from previous customers before making a decision. Here comes the role of reputation management.
What is Reputation Management?
Reputation or brand management is about managing the image of a business, company, and service provider. Any company mulling to expand its services would seek online brand management to ensure a positive image of the company around the internet.
A company's positive image helps add more clients and sell more products online. Moreover, an effective brand management strategy can help monitor online reviews of particular products or services, stay connected with customers, and ensure a positive online image of the brand.
What is Reputation Management Strategy?
Online Brand management strategy is a plan devised to monitor the image of a particular brand in the online market.
The strategy includes tracking the brand's current position, finding key problem areas such as unaddressed negative reviews and misleading information, drafting a plan to improve the brand's online presence, and more.
The scope of brand management is vast as it involves handling social networks, website content, blogs, addressing customer grievances, responding to comments, and more. However, most brand management strategy revolves around two significant steps:
- Monitoring the current online presence of the brand through social networking sites, review websites, blogs, and more.
- Responding or reacting to customers' online feedback and comments.
In short, it is all about seizing opportunities to boost brand perception in the global online market.
What is The Importance of a Reputation Management Strategy?
Companies and brands with an effective reputation management strategy are more successful as they fully control how they operate and behave online. A strategic plan to monitor and control the presence of a brand online has many benefits, as listed below:
- The reputation of a brand affects purchasing decisions
- Consumers lose trust in the brand
- Win Over Your Competitors:
You will be surprise to know that reviews play a significant role in buying decisions. Let us assume both your product line and customer support are outstanding.
But, your customers get scared by harsh comments and look for a better alternative to your products. A proper brand management strategy can help eliminate such incidents.
People rethink their commitment when brands receive poor reviews or comments. People become distrustful and look for more excuses to leave. Positive testimonials, according to customers, help them believe in a company more. With the help of a reputation management strategy, you can ensure a positive image of the brand across the internet and expand your reach.
Positive online brand management of your brand can help you win customers from your competitors. For instance, a company with good customer care services is likely to get more clients. As part of your online brand management strategy, you can assess the online performance of your competitors and evaluate the areas that need your focus to attract customers.
A Step-By-Step Guide for Reputation Management Strategy:
To strategically manage your brand's reputation, you must develop a plan to evaluate current brand positioning, available resources, and desired results. To make it easier for you, here is a guide on how to draft an online reputation management strategy:
Step 1: Check Your Brand's Current Online Image
Any successful brand management approach must include tracking your brand's online reputation. Start keeping an eye on how you're brand is perceived by customers on app stores, review sites, e-commerce websites, and social media sites.
You can also check forums, blogs, and news websites about your brand or niche. People talk about brands all over the place. It is essential to understand where your customers are and what they are saying about your offerings.
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Step 2: Evaluate competitors' Online Presence:
The next step in creating a brand management strategy is learning about your competitors' reputations or conducting a comprehensive competitive analysis. The comparative analysis examines the methods used by your rivals to manage ratings, reviews, comments, and mentions across all platforms.
A competitive analysis is important as it helps understand why your competitors are doing well. There are two main benefits of competitive analysis:
- Learn about your competitor's pitfalls: By paying attention to client feedback, you can learn from the mistakes made by your competitors and discover the issues that their consumers are facing.
- How to Address the Problems: Through this analysis, you will learn more about how to respond to customer reviews and better understand the dos and don'ts.
Step 3: Create a Workable Plan
Developing a workable plan to enhance your reputation is the next stage. Your action plan has to specify how your team will be responsible for each task.
Think about the following:
- Who will keep track of the comments and ratings?
- Who will decide whether new remarks need to be addressed?
- Who has the knowledge to determine the position of the business on any issues or inquiries?
- Who will offer the responses?
Just make sure that before beginning, you've given these things some thought. If you have a strategy, you can fall back on it if things go wrong.
Based on the analysis of competitors and the brand's current online position, divide your team to perform the following tasks:
- Responding to bad remarks
- Dealing with spam remarks
- Keeping the brand's positive image.
- Removing misleading information statements;
- Questions pertaining to business
When drafting strategies to manage the reputation of your brand online, it is essential for you and your team to be neutral. As a thumb rule,
- Avoid taking bad ratings personally.
- Never disregard a negative review; doing so will make matters worse.
- When speaking on behalf of a business, show consideration in your comments.
- React quickly to critical comments, but sometimes do it differently.
- Request communication from the reviewer so that the conversation can be moved to a private forum.
How do I deal with fake reviews?
It can be frustrating to hear opposing opinions from your customers. But with a few tactics, you can win them back.
- Be composed and attempt not to take the review personally.
- Attempt to have the review taken down.
- Avoid retorting in such a manner, even if you know the review might be phony.
- Inquire about the reviewer's challenges and specifics.
- Be wary of false reviews. Customers may believe you are a fake if you respond to some questions but not others.
How to respond to favourable comments?
Just like it is vital to be down to earth when answering negative reviews, you also need to be careful when dealing with positive comments.
- Post positive reviews on social media
- Express appreciation for them sharing the review.
- Use their first names to give them a more individualized touch.
- Respond with brevity and clarity.
- Promote your company's mission.
- Give them a call for reviews, visits, or app downloads for offers.
If you know you gave good service, you may be confident the review will be positive. A personal request also encourages the client to go above and above to assist. Remember that fostering constructive criticism is necessary to have a strong reputation.
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Step 4: Oversee and Manage the Reviews
You must have a framework to manage your conversations when responding to reviews. In addition to your company's website and social media profiles, you may use review websites and tools to keep track of all client comments and brand references.
Step 5: Evaluate the Outcomes
Finally, after implementing the brand management strategy, you should analyze the outcomes of the strategy and continue to work on it.
When analyzing the outcome of the strategy, here are some things to consider.
- Positive Analysis:Seeing activity about your company on review websites is encouraging. It is good to know what percentage of it is positive.
- Media and Industry Mention: You're on the right track if you receive more high-level media mentions. Industry leaders and influencers may tag your brand, changing how others see it and increasing sales.
- Comparative Visibility: Measures your brand's awareness compared to your competitors. This statistic should show a considerable improvement over time.
One of the goals of a successful reputation management strategy is to improve a company's public perception. You can only hope for the best regarding brand management. You must monitor what others say about you and interact with them to redirect the topic well.
So, now is the time to get to work. You now understand how to develop a successful management strategy for your brand's online presence. Create guidelines and other documents to ensure your team has all the required instructions. Try your best and be patient.