Whether you have decided to do some pro-active online reputation management activities or are trying to defend your company from an active attack, chances are you’re going to shop around for the best bid for the work you need to have done. While not as ubiquitous as search engine optimization, the reputation management field is becoming increasingly competitive and the bidding process will be reflective of that.
What we’re seeing at Reputation Management LLC is that much of the competition is based on price, whether the promised objectives can be completed or not at the suggested bid. These bids are often similar in price to those of a search engine optimization project, despite the fact that a typical reputation management project is much more time and labor intensive. The major difference between the two types of projects is that an SEO campaign is likely to be considered a success if it can get a single front page ranking for selected keywords. A reputation management campaign, on the other hand, would be tasked with occupying as many positions as possible in the top twenty or thirty rankings of the major search engines. In that light, what might be considered a stunning victory for SEO would be considered an abject failure in the context of online reputation management. The risks, therefore, are high when a company pays for reputation management strategy on an SEO budget.
A typical reputation management strategy will employ a variety of measures which can be put in place to either occupy the real estate in the top thirty rankings or to knock negative content down to the rankings after page three. Some of these measures are:
1) Analysis – If the campaign is pro-active in nature, much of the analysis will focus on relevant keywords which can provide the most efficient protection after optimization. For a defensive campaign, acting immediately to determine the nature of the attack such as where the content is being posted, when it was posted, and the manner in which it’s being disseminated will set the agenda for the course of action. Assessing the extent of the damage, the quantity of damaging content, and potential ownership of sites where negative content is being posted will then determine the size and force of the counter measures. These are important determinations due to the different strategies required for content found in social media sites as opposed to a blog or discussion board. Analysis of keywords is also executed to see which ones are generating traffic versus those that aren’t.
2) Strategic and Tactical Planning – Once analysis is completed a counter strategy will be developed to minimize and contain posted content as quickly as possible. It’s common for a team to be built around the skill sets required to achieve to optimal outcome.
3) Putting the Plan into Action – Putting the online reputation management plan into action includes the following activities; blogging, new article creation, website building, participation in social media threads, press releases, and link building. The new content, along with already existing positive commentary on the web are search engine optimized and marketed to start moving up the rankings of the search engines with the objective of pushing negative content down in the rankings. Associated domain names and keywords may be purchased to facilitate the process as well.
Be sure to find out whether the ‘low-ball” bids you’re getting for reputation management not only include these activities but work them at a high rate of repetition. Getting it right in a reputation management campaign the first time around, even if the price tag is higher, is a much better option than being forced to re-start a failed campaign because it wasn’t funded to the extent necessary. To get it right the first time, call Reputation Management LLC at (800)-378-5532.