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.

Manage Your Rating With Effective Online Reputation Management Strategies

Over the years, Online Reputation Management (ORM) has been steadily gaining momentum in online marketing. In the past, communication between companies and consumers had been very minimal, and companies had been selling or promoting their products to a passive audience.  Nowadays, social media has grown to become a poignant presence and influencing platform for consumers to use, which enables them to freely state their opinions and concerns and allows other people to see and respond to their comments or reviews.

As more and more consumers rely on online reviews and comments when making their purchasing decisions, it has become crucial for businesses to know and understand what it is being said about their brand online and how a company can manage it in order to build and maintain a positive brand reputation online.

Therefore, it is quite clear that if a business doesn’t invest in developing and improving their online presence and reputation proactively, they will more than likely pay considerable costs later in terms of lost revenues, repairing abrupt damage, and developing out the presence they neglected.

First and foremost, is evaluating and determining your brand’s current online status. What is being said about you online? What do customers and competitors think about the brand? Monitoring is essential in any digital marketing operation as your brand presence is measured across various social platforms, forums, blogs and websites.

Secondly, start devising a plan to improve and develop your online presence,that means proactively engaging with your online community. Create a presence on any and all relevant social media websites, such as Twitter, Facebook, Google+, for specific areas of expertise, other social media sites would be beneficial, such as LinkedIn (for high-tech and/or professional types of businesses), Pinterest, Instagram and YouTube (for visually-oriented products).

Communication is key in any relationship you develop, therefore regularly interacting with your customers is a must. It’s important to build up your social media accounts. Merely having a social media account/page for your business is insufficient — you need to develop your audience on them as well, which will eventually build up to a close communication channel and increase your influence and engagement scores.

Be receptive to positive as well as negative feedback. Perhaps the only thing worse than under-engaging in online media is handling social media badly. No one can damage you as much as you can damage yourself if you don’t know what you’re doing. Don’t be afraid to respond to negative comments. Based on your response, they either make you or break you. Criticism can often provide your business with vital information regarding to where your business is going wrong. Moreover, it is also a great opportunity to speak to those who have posted negative feedback and ask them why and eventually offer solutions or help.

Positive comments build up your reputations just as much as the negative ones. Encouraging and highlighting positive feedback will definitely boost your brand. On both occasions, personally responding to comments and reviews shows each customer that you care and are actively listening to their concerns and opinions.

However, ORM is not only about managing negative and positive feedback, but also managing content in search engines. You may need to create content and you likely ought to develop content to rank them as high as possible on search engines as well. Develop website and blogs, where you regularly post high quality content and promote your brand in a positive manner. Using relevant keyword phrases will help learn the exact queries people type into search engines to find what consumers are looking for online. Therefore, using the right keywords in content will increase its ranking and therefore more people will access it, bringing in more traffic to the website.

Online reputation development requires two investments: time and money. Following this, ORM, when done right, may help put you and your business in a stronger position and may significantly impact your sales and business revenue.

Proactive online reputation management is going to cost you if you want to be perceived as a positive brand on the market, but it will also save you some money in the long run if the nearly-inevitable occurs. Think of it as a form of insurance. It won’t absolutely keep you from getting damaged, but it could mitigate the damage and keep it from being worse than it might otherwise be.

Which 4 Social Media Platforms Will Enhance Your Online Reputation?

It’s predicted that by 2018 the UK alone will have over 17 million Twitter users. That’s just one indicator of how essential social media has become for businesses and private individuals today. A strong presence on social media can greatly enhance your online reputation, whereas a limited presence can hinder it.

To start, there are some platforms you may want to steer clear of. Myspace and Bebo are two examples of outdated social networks. Both popular at their peak, Bebo was sold and closed in 2008 and Myspace has seen a significant collapse in users. Today, Bebo exists as a messaging app while Myspace – under the ownership of Justin Timberlake – has shifted from social media into a music and news media platform. Google+ is another largely ignored social network. Of 2.2 billion Google users, only 1% of them were actively on Google+ in 2015.

YouTube

YouTube is the world’s largest video sharing platform and actually the world’s second largest search engine. Every month, users watch 3.25 billion hours of videos on YouTube. There’s a staggering opportunity to reach consumers through YouTube. Using video content can be a great way to strongly engage users through multimedia. Videos made on YouTube can also be shared easily on other social media platforms, so a YouTube profile perfectly complements a social media network.

Twitter

With 328 million monthly active users in 2017’s first quarter, Twitter is very popular. Designed for short messages of no more than 140 characters, as well as picture and video sharing, Twitter is a great and easy way to interact with customers as individuals.

Facebook

Facebook had over 32 million user profiles in 2016 and that’s just in the UK. Facebook is great for sharing pictures, statuses and videos, and communicating directly with customers. A strong Facebook presence is a great way to improve your online reputation.

It’s not just businesses that benefit from Facebook. 60% of employers use social media to screen candidates. A great Facebook profile lets you appear professional and highlights any personal detail you think make you interesting to employers.

LinkedIn

Different from Twitter and Facebook, LinkedIn is a networking tool for professionals. LinkedIn is particularly useful for individuals seeking to boost their online reputation and enhance their careers. A well-made LinkedIn profile with plenty of connections is a great way to appear professional to potential employers.