Tag Archives: bad reputation

Social Media’s New Role in Reputation Management

Reputation-Management-Deluxe-Package

There is a new player in the reputation management arena and its name is social media. While it is now a well known fact that social media is revolutionizing everything from the way people communicate to marketing strategies for businesses, this new medium is also changing ways in which businesses can manage their online reputations.

Here are the areas in which social media can play a significant role in reputation management for businesses:

* Building a loyal following by providing valuable content, engaging with the community, and developing relationships by being a good “social” citizenSocial media is not only about what a company says about itself, it’s about what the business’ community is saying about the company as well. Building a loyal following that believes in what a company is doing and shares positive commentary with their networks can be a powerful weapon against posts that contain negative content. While a supportive community can’t eliminate negative commentary, their positive comments, shares, likes, etc. can greatly dilute comments that might otherwise hurt a company’s reputation.
* The provision of a variety of ways in which businesses can convey their message to their markets – The typical objective of a reputation management campaign is to control as much of the content that consumers see when they use search terms related to the sponsoring company. What often gets forgotten in this race to occupy high search engine rankings is the opportunity to create content that can double as marketing materials as well. Looked at in this light, deploying content through the variety of multimedia options available on social media platforms can both protect and build and company’s reputation while also serving as effective marketing and brand building materials.
* Playing a significant role in the algorithms used by search engines to determine rankings on their results pages – In their search to find SEO signals that are difficult to manipulate, the search engines have found that social media offers virtually everything they have been looking for in terms of links, content sharing, followers, etc. To that end, the search engines are increasingly prioritizing SEO signals originating from social media sites in the algorithms used to rank web pages in their results.

Reputation managers, due to the inherent advantages, are now essentially obligated to integrate social media sites into their reputation management campaigns. To do otherwise, as the saying goes, “Is like bringing a knife to a gunfight”.

Effectively Overcoming a Negative Online Reputation Crisis – Reputation Management

When a negative online reputation crisis hits, the key is to act efficiently and effectively. Here’s how your company can overcome an attack its reputation.

  • If you don’t have a crisis plan in place already, develop one asap. The longer it takes for you to respond, the more extensive the damage will probably be.
  • When an internet based reputation crisis hits, evaluate the gravity of the attack scenario by determining the degree of the credibility of the published material. A credible attack will be handled differently than one that is not based in reality.
  • Get ready to start publishing content for distribution across the web. This will ultimately play a significant role in getting negative content off of the front pages of the search engines.
  • If the attacker is anonymous or using a fake handle, try to find the identity of the person and attempt to determine his standing. If it’s a competitive strike your response will be different than if it is a legitimate complaint.
  • If the complaint is legit and apologies are in order, have them come from top management. The problem will be resolved significantly faster in this way.
  • If your side has taken actions to correct the situation, then your customers should know about it. Corrective actions will go a long way toward rebuilding customer confidence. Also, the thread will be left incomplete if you don’t reply and provide some sort of accounting of how the problem was fixed.
  • Don’t hesitate to hire professional support from a solid online reputation management company to push negative feedback from the top positions of the search result pages. The upside of this is that the negative content will be replaced by positive content that you control.

Effectively overcoming a negative online reputation crisis can be done as long as actions are put into place quickly and efficiently. Hiring professional assistance from an online reputation management firm may be advisable especially if the attack is determined to be coming from a corporate competitor. For more information, visit: http://www.reputationmanagementllc.com/ or call (866) 530 7703.

Reputation Management – Politics in an Online Age

In case you hadn’t noticed, the Internet has changed the world quite a bit.  One area of life that’s being altered the most is politics.  Political ads, political scandals, rumors, elections, campaigns and just about every other area of a politician’s life are being radically changed by the presence of the Internet.

The Internet’s influence on political campaigns has made online reputation management all the more important, because at any moment a hundred different special interests could be working to destroy the reputation of a politician.  Reputations can be made or destroyed online, and some major presidential candidates have made their mark by having a savvy eye for online reputation management.  In 2004, Howard Dean’s candidacy took off due to his Internet campaigning, and was taken down when his antics at one fundraiser was plastered online.  Even Barack Obama’s main weapon during the campaign was his super use of online reputation management tactics over his opponents in both the Democratic primaries and the general election

There are many examples of politicians being taken down by Internet as well, often those who had no clue what was happening.  For example, in the 2008 presidential campaign, Rudy Giuliani was mocked by a Website with a common misspelling of his name.  The Website took you to a clip of him in drag at a 2000 press roast dinner.  Obviously, that’s not the kind of thing you want being put online about you, especially if you’re a Republican.  Then, during the same campaign, details of former Senator John Edwards’ affair was being broken online.  Having a savvy reputation management technique is know how to deal with things before they happen, such as buying every website that has your name.  You should even buy every variation of your name, every misspelling and so forth.

However, during the 2008 presidential election, the online reputation management of both parties wasn’t very good.  Only 5 of the 17 candidates purchased keywords on search engine, and in fact the Republicans did a much better job than the Democrats.
Blogging

One of the major players in politics from 1996 until now has been blogs.  Blogs have crushed the reputations of some presidents, going all the way back to Matt Drudge breaking the Monica Lewinsky scandal on his Website in the mid-90’s.  Blogs attract attention to some candidate and distract from others.  One great example of seemingly accidental online reputation management is the case made about George W. Bush during the 2004 election.

On CBS, Dan Rather broke a story about George W. Bush not actually attending his military time for the full term.  However, the hand writing expert they found to analyze signed documents was barely qualified to be called a professional, let alone an “expert.”  Within hours the bloggers interested in the story had discovered that the hand-writing expert’s qualifications were suspect (to say the least) and the story was immediately deemed false.

Reputation management can be an almost unstoppable force when coupled with the Internet.  It can make a nobody with a cool Youtube video a god and can turn a senator with a great record into a pariah.

Online Reputation Management: The Basics

Bad publicity is just a reality of doing business these days, especially for any company that is even moderately in the public eye.  With hundreds of television channels, a print media network larger than the entire European Union and the Internet, negative comments are hurled at everyone from the Pope to Oprah.  All it takes is one negative comment on a blog or Website with the right mix of traffic to drive your reputation down the tubes.

All of this mean’s that today, probably more than ever before, the need for online reputation management is essential.  Think about how many celebrities are made and then erased in a matter of days, or how many movies collapse even before they are released because of bad press.
Online reputation management is the process of following online references to your brand, your company, your service or to you specifically, as well as having a plan in place to deal with the negative comments.  Here are some online reputation management basics you can follow so that your perception isn’t tarnished.

  • Monitor – You need to figure out a way to regularly track and log what comments are going about in relation to you on the Internet.
  • Evaluate – Take into consideration what’s being said, he’s saying it, how it’s said, who might be reading it and so forth.
  • Act – Discover or create effective and efficient ways to comment on the information being published about you.

Why You Need It

To be quite honest, there are hundreds, if not thousands of scenarios in which a competitor, a friend or a total stranger will wipe the matt with you in terms of online slander and negative comments.  The most frustrating reason of course is having no reason at all.  There are malicious individuals who simply seek to attack the character of others without any provocation.
That being said, here are a few real world scenarios that come up with some regularity which dictate the necessity of online reputation management.

  1. If you’re a business-to-business service provider pitching a particular client, a competitor may do their best to smear your online reputation by either posting ghost blogs, commenting on other blogs, setting up websites complaining about your or some other “dirty trick.”  The Internet offers everyone on earth the opportunity to anonymously make bold statements, and countless companies are taking advantage.
  2. A client/customer who has a bad experience with your or your company either posts a website or goes on the attack on your company blog, making outlandish statements or just causing trouble.
  3. A company with a name close to yours, and a URL similar to yours, gets a load of bad press and people lump you in with this company.  Online reputation management can help erase this sort of problem, which happens far more often than people think.  This one is a bit trickier because the neighboring company may be doing some online reputation management of their own.  Many a company though has seen it’s reputation damaged simply because their name was similar to another company’s.

Reputation Management

The Internet provides numerous opportunities, both good and bad.  In a strange way, the Internet is extremely democratic in that it allows anyone with access the chance to use or abuse the Web however they see fit.  As such, reputation management has become a major area of interest and concern for millions, if not tens of millions, of Americans.

Reputation management is the process of tracking an entity’s actions and other entity’s opinions about those actions, meaning the search for what people are doing and what others think about what people are doing.  It’s a bit like online gossip, but reputation management goes further than just People magazine.  Entire Internet related responsibilities, such as search engine image protection (SEIP), were created for the sole purpose of protecting a person’s name and reputation from undesired public information.  Reputation management is important to individuals, businesses, non-profits, politicians and more, because it affects so many areas of life.

There are many ways to execute reputation management on the Internet; one way is to overwhelm and eliminate negative listings that show up when people search a name or term in Google.  However, things have changed and online reputation management is evolving and new services such as online image consulting and litigant image enhancement is growing.

Growth

More so than ever before, it’s easy for an individual to post slanderous, untrue, injurious and hurtful information based on nothing more than the wind.  In the past, a person would have to use a print medium, newsletter, newspaper, to produce a wide spread negative message, but those days are over.  Now, anyone with Internet access can make wild comments.
Another reason why reputation management is important is that companies are producing as much hurtful information as individuals, if not more.  Comments regarding a person’s credit rating or debt could be posted online, individuals can use the forums on various company Websites to bash the company, the employees, stockholders or whomever they like.  Websites such as eBay, Wikipedia and Slashdot are often abused in such a way.

Solution?

There are a number of ways to combat the type of information that is slanderous or flat out inaccurate.  For example, you can use Search Engine Reputation Management (SERM) to shield your brand or reputation from damaging content.  In the end though, two challenges persist, the nature of Internet search engines and the ability of certain individuals to spread information no matter how much time it takes.
One of the best ways to combat negative information is to produce positive information.  So, reputation management can be performed with SEO/SEM, putting quality information of a positive nature online about the person or entity being attacked.  The goal is to produce enough positive information that it drowns out the negative being produced.  It’s a difficult battle overall, but one that is winnable.

Moving Forward

To enhance your online reputation management, find a reputable individual or company who can protect your brand and your name.  Odds are you don’t have enough time to deal with the rumors flying around about you, or the time to learn how.  Find professionals who specialize in reputation management and let them handle the mess.