Manage Brand Reputation by Monitoring Online Reviews

Monitor Review Sites

Monitoring review sites relevant to your industry and business should be the first step in any online reputation management strategy. Here are some of the biggest and most important:

  • Yelp
  • Facebook
  • Google
  • TripAdvisor
  • Foursquare
  • Yellow Pages

There could always be review sites specific to your industry; therefore it is strongly advisable to research these as well. In niche industries people might also create niche communities on specialized forums.

After you have compiled a relevant list (even the major sites, such as Yelp, Facebook and Google is a good starting point for now), you can begin analyzing the reviews, their volume by looking on these platforms once a week.

Turn Negative to Positive

The best way to deal with customer reviews is by responding to negative reviews. It is an opportunity for you to demonstrate the ability to accept criticism and work towards a solution.

According to a survey, “45 percent of consumers say that they’re more likely to visit a business if it responds to negative reviews.”

It is essential to find a resolution to the issue at hand; however sometimes there is no possibility. Even in this case, it is better to have an appropriate response to the complaint by saying you are sorry for their experience. This will win you points with other visitors that might see the negative review at a later time.

Sometimes negative reviews can be fixed through communication with the disgruntled customer; however at the very least, your audience will take into consideration your effort to solve the issue. This will greatly alleviate the negative effect of a bad review.

Actively Obtain Positive Reviews

Leaving a negative review is easier for upset customers than for satisfied customers to share positive reviews at every interaction with your business. Therefore acquisition of positive reviews should become an active process.

While positive reviews do not have the ability to completely erase a negative feedback, they will certainly impact your potential customers’ purchasing decision positively. One negative review among 100 positive has a lesser effect than among 10.

The best time to ask for a positive review is after a customer has had a great experience and is emotionally inclined to leave a positive review. Various signs like “We’re on Yelp!” or “Rate us on Tripadvisor” that’s visible as they exit can make a big difference.

 

Using Search Engine Optimization to Manage Your Online Reputation

When it comes to managing your brand, previous PR efforts that previously were effective have now been replaced or transformed under the new online economy.

The internet has enabled everyone to advertise their services thanks to the ease of publishing online. While this is a great improvement for small business owners who do not possess a big marketing budget for newspapers and television or billboards; it also comes with downside that it might be lost within the plethora of online advertisements.

In order to get reasonable results from your online efforts, you can use search engine optimization (SEO) to enhance your visibility on the web and reach to your target audience more easily.

SEO is a constantly changing environment; because the algorithms employed by Google or other search engines undergo changes fairly regularly. However, there are some rules that you should know regardless of potential changes:

Keywords

The most qualified person to know about your products is you. That’s perfectly fine and it should be that way. But don’t forget that your target audience should also understand what your product is about.

Always try to put yourself in your customers’ feet and forget everything you know about your product. When you advertise your brand, you should be able to convey your product to your followers in a relatable way. Find keywords that your potential consumer will be searching for (not what you would search for), and mold your content around them. As a result, when someone in your area is searching for a designer, your advertisement or your content will rank high in search because you customized your keywords to the search query of your customer.

Work with Professionals.

There are resources on the internet where one can learn about SEO. However always think about if your time might be better spent leveraging your experience in your domain to move forward the business and let a professional deal with the SEO. There are qualified professionals on the market who focus on managing their clients’ online reputation. Managing a PR mistake or some bad feedbacks online can be easily done with SEO.

Extract Insights

There is plenty of competition in every industry and you will certainly have to battle it out, but SEO will also give you an insight how to move quicker than the competition and work on trending topics. If you see a potential trend forming for a certain area of service, you can capitalize on it with a marketing campaign targeting that specific trend. Your brand will be ahead of the curve and will ascend quicker in the search results. Utilising SEO, its metrics and analyzing the data will help your business find its place within the industry and form a strong identity and solidify its reputation as a result.

Navigating the Online World to Become a Successful Business

Word of Mouth is Everywhere in An Online World

In the current business world, reputation can make or break your brand. What consumers talk about your business – about your products and services – either strengthens your position, or you lose ground to your competitors. Therefore a strong online presence is essential to any brand.

Studies show that one in three UK businesses now think negative content is causing them considerable damage.

One in twenty of those surveyed in 2018 stated that this type of feedback can already be estimated in costs of more than £500,000. Bad press with subsequent negative reviews and social media posts were the most damaging cases.

So how do you build a robust online reputation that will strengthen your business to grow and move ahead of competitors?

Give 110%

Traditional customer service never fades away and this enhances customer experience. Retail giants like Amazon and John Lewis have built worldwide brands by relying on excellent consumer service. As they have correctly identified, if you treat your customers well they will return for more – and potentially strengthen your company’s reputation by leaving positive reviews.

Transparency is Appreciated

Issues always arise, but it’s important to not ignore them and deal with them accordingly. If the customer feels in any way neglected, there are now plenty of social media channels to voice their concerns, which will potentially reach a wide audience.

Responses to customers have to be dealt with as quickly as possible and appropriately. In cases when your business is in the wrong, it’s better to acknowledge it, apologise and straighten out the issue.

When KFC ran out of chicken early in 2018, it came forth with an apology very quickly and explained what had happened. The company was aware the usual type of corporate press release wouldn’t go well with its clients. KFC went the extra mile, putting out full-page ads in major daily newspapers showing what company leaders, franchise owners and customers were feeling in a disengaging tone. Its cheeky response to the chicken issue leveraged the situation to avoid negative PR and turn it around, which led to a quick recovery of their reputation.

Deliver on Your Promises

Earning the trust of your customers is very hard, but very easy to shatter. Try to deliver on your promises and offer services and products as you advertise.

If you’re an online retailer like ASOS and you are sure you can uphold to that same day or 24-hour delivery promise, it is great. If you struggle to meet the deadline often times, then you need to re-think your positioning.

Failure to accomplish everything you state constantly will quickly lead to customer dissatisfaction, which more often than not will be shared with the whole online world.

Customer faith and trust are essential. According to a recent research, 64% of people trust online search engines when analyzing a business, therefore make sure that what you promise to your customers is achievable.

A recent consumer survey found that:

  • 97 per cent of consumers search online for local businesses, 12 per cent do it daily.
  • 90 per cent of people read online reviews before visiting a business.
  • 85 per cent of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations.

Make the online world your friend, not your enemy.

Digital Marketing Tips for Small and Medium Sized Businesses

In the current competitive digital world, ineffective marketing only means money down the drain. It is of outmost importance to have a well-thought online marketing strategy and execute it accordingly.

Over the last decade, the digital world has evolved massively to become the primary channel for lead generation. Small to medium-sized companies have started to realize the importance of digital marketing. Now small to medium-sized businesses can easily reach a global audience through online funnels.

No enterprise should be left behind, otherwise they lose to competition. Below we have highlighted ways for you to utilize digital marketing to your advantage.

Mobile is Everywhere

As a small or medium sized business, you can directly engage your audience and know who your customers are. Experts argue that corporations have slightly lost their direct connection with the consumer that would allow for a personalized user experience.

The new generation has more alternatives, most of which can be cheaper; therefore brand loyalty is slowly waning. Consequently, expanding your reach online is a great solution to make your business available to people who would have otherwise never heard about it.

Restaurants can benefit by collaborating with widely-used app delivery services like Just Eat, Deliveroo and others that provide customers with a new way of discovering brands.

Retail stores should consider online shopping applications and marketplaces like Etsy to display their products to a larger audience online.

Visibility

If you are in the beginning of your journey into the online marketing space, visibility across as many channels as possible should be a priority. Target platforms where your customers spend their time. Pinterest, Instagram and Tumblr are most suitable for creative industries, where content is mostly consumed visually. Twitter and Facebook should also not be ignored as these are channels to communicate with consumers or receive feedback for products or services.

Analytics

When it comes to running a small or medium-sized enterprise, costs and profitability are the two key metrics to keep an eye on to sustain continued growth. However analyzing your social metrics will help you identify successful online marketing campaigns. The digital footprint that customers will leave can tell you a lot about who is involved with your brand, products or services. Data on clients can be analyzed and leveraged to extract valuable insights on how to streamline your budget and achieve higher sales with a reasonable budget. This information helps keep track of what works, what doesn’t and how you can improve it.

These beginner tips in digital marketing should put you on the right path to launching your business on the worldwide web and start growing an online audience.

Survey Shows Businesses Expect Budget Increases for Digital Marketing in the Coming Years

Almost half (41%) of companies with more than 100 employees invest more than $500K in digital marketing every year. This is revealed in a US-based survey with 501 marketers published by The Manifest and looks to discover how businesses invest and how their investment might change in the coming year.

Respondents are a mix of senior level employees and companies. About 76% consider marketing has undergone more transformation during the last 2 years than 50 years before. With the advent of new marketing methods, traditional marketing like pamphlets, flyers or billboards have suffered a loss in popularity. 99% of Manifest’s respondents said they planned to increase spending on “at least one” digital marketing channel in the coming year.

Another report based on digital marketing, it was suggested that traditional media spend is being ousted by marketing automation tools for email and social, which has seen budget increases by 44% in just the last year. Meanwhile, marketing intelligence companies also predicted that total spend on social media advertising was set to grow by $28bn (£21bn) to reach $76bn (£58bn) by 2020.

Indeed, 64% of businesses surveyed by Manifest said they planned to spend both more time and money on social media marketing, while optimising their website was a priority among 55%.

An interesting bit is that businesses plan to put fewer resources on display and banner ads (19%), despite the ever-growing prevalence of automatic buying.

If your company doesn’t have a marketing budget of $500K per year, don’t worry just yet. According to co-founder and head of sales at B2B lead generation agency, the spending that a business should put aside for digital marketing varies by business and customer needs.

“It’s all over the map as far as industry goes. To figure it out, you need to understand who you’re trying to sell to and define those personas.

“Get a sense of exactly how people consume information and how they make purchasing decisions. If digital is really big for these customers, then digital marketing should be a massive amount of your budget”

“If you’re in an old-school industry that doesn’t really do a lot of digital stuff, digital marketing may not make as much sense.”