Have you ever wondered why reputation management is essential for small businesses? Let’s find out how reputation management strategies can help your business gain a competitive edge.
Imagine a disgruntled customer writing a nasty comment about the latest Apple iPhone. Will it affect the sales of the iPhone? Not really, as the brand is too big to be affected by the criticism of a single disgruntled customer. Now, imagine another customer writing a similar criticism of a local restaurant. It can affect walk-ins and food orders and, in the long run, business growth.
It is surprising to note that most small businesses have either a casual or reactive approach toward reputation management. A single disgruntled customer can cause more damage to a small business than most business owners can imagine. The point we are trying to make here is online reputation affects small businesses disproportionately. Hence, if you are a small business, you need to take online reputation management seriously.
What is Reputation Management?
Reputation management, also known as online reputation management, is a set of strategies that aim to create a positive impression about a brand in front of its existing customers and potential ones. Reputation management strategies include monitoring online mentions, engaging with customers, and influencing search results. They nullify the impact of bad reviews and help build a strong brand image.
Small businesses must invest in reputation management to stay ahead of the competition. In a world where most people read reviews before buying a gadget or visiting a restaurant, you need to hire a reputation management company as a small business owner and can’t leave it to your in-house team.
A reputation management company focuses on engaging more customers and generating positive mentions of your brand on your website and third-party platforms. Positive mentions help build your brand’s reputation, ensuring higher sales and revenue.
Why Invest In Reputation Management?
Reputation management is vital for all businesses, especially smaller ones. Please don’t confuse it with SEO, though both these marketing strategies share a lot in common. Let’s walk you through some of the most convincing reasons to hire an online reputation management company and work on your reputation management strategies.
Grow Your Brand’s Image
You have a great product and have priced it competitively. At the same time, your products have received negative ratings in recent weeks. Will your products sell? Negative reviews can deliver a killer blow to your business, as an average customer will look at the recent reviews of your product before buying it. Strategic online reputation management focuses on proactively shaping the image of your brand and products. It harnesses positive reviews to create a feel-good factor and boosts the growth of your brand.
Manage Negative Reviews
No brand or product in the world can impress all its customers. Even Apple iPhone or Lamborgini have their share of criticism. You must accept that an unhappy customer has more motivation to write a negative review than a happy customer singing praises about your brand. These negative reviews hurt smaller brands and can sink your reputation.
It is critical to handle negative reviews professionally, and that’s where reputation management services come into the picture. ORM experts treat unhappy customers with respect and address their concerns. New customers judge your brand based on how you have treated previous customers, especially those who haven’t been happy with your brand.
Build Positive Image
The whole idea of reputation management is building a solid brand image and earning customers’ trust. And there isn’t a better way to build trust than asking for positive feedback from satisfied customers. If negative reviews hurt your business, positive ones can act as oxygen for your growth.
It would help if you proactively asked for reviews as part of your online reputation management strategy. Requesting reviews over email and text messages at the end of every transaction is wise. These reviews also help minimize the impact of negative reviews as prospective customers see more positive news about your brand than negative ones.
In the tech-savvy world where information is available at the fingertips, reputation management strategies become crucial. More than 90% of customers buy products after reading reviews, and 60% don’t buy from brands with overwhelmingly negative reviews. As consumers trust reviews and ratings, you can cash on this by improving the online reputation of your brand and products. It can maximize your sales across online and offline channels and increase revenue.
Improve Your Products
Every business invests in reputation management either overtly or as a reactive measure to bad press and negative reviews. There is a problem with the second approach as it shifts the attention of your internal resources in firefighting and preventing reputation loss.
Hiring a reputation management company brings a proactive approach to the strategy. From monitoring mentions of your brand across hundreds of platforms to requesting customer feedback and handling negative reviews, they build a positive image of your brand. Your internal resources can focus on the business’s core areas and improve the bottom line.
Boost Local Search Results
Remember, we mentioned that SEO and online reputation management share a lot in common. Reputation management strategies include improving your rankings on local search results. A reputation management company will list your business in local search directors and focus on reviews from local customers. It improves the discoverability of your website thanks to the proximity search factor that Google and other search engines give weightage to.
Summing It Up
It won’t be wrong to summarize that a business’s brand value is the function of its online reputation. If your business and products are perceived positively in the market, you will stay ahead of the competition. Negative reviews can serve as a death knell for a small business in a competitive market. You need a professional reputation management company to manage your online reputation and design tailored reputation management strategies to help you stay ahead of the curve.
If you are looking for a partner offering reputation management services, Cyrusson Inc., will fit your bill perfectly. We are a full-service marketing agency specializing in online reputation management. Our team works on custom ORM strategies that take your business to the next level. We instill confidence in your products in the minds of your customers, driving positive conversations about your brand. Call us for a free consultation now, and let’s drive your growth and success.