The world has changed, especially for business owners. Managing a business has moved beyond word of mouth and print advertising. These days online social media reputation is the best way to get customers, and when managed correctly online reputation management can be cheaper and more effective than traditional advertising. Steven Lloyd consulting can help business owners like you keep up with the changing times. We have created an easy guide for business owners to research, protect and manage their brands online reputation.
What is Online Reputation Management?
Your company’s online reputation is its first impression for potential customers, which is why Online Reputation Management is so important– it ensures that when potential customers google your business they see your own desirable content above negative reviews and other damaging material. Online Reputation Management is also about encouraging happy customers to leave good reviews. ORM can be managed through four main social marketing channels, listed below.
The Four Social Media Marketing Channels of ORM
The first of the four is the most obvious– paid media. Traditional advertising, paid advertising etc. This can be done through Google, display ads on Facebook, or paid space on blogs. The second social media marketing channel is earned media– which is attention drawn to your business by winning an award, or just standing out with great reviews. Earned media requires non-paid third-party input. The third channel is Social Media, which is well known in today’s day and age. Having active social media accounts, such as a Twitter account or Facebook page, allows companies and brands to interact directly with consumers through conversation and content. The last Social Media Marketing Channel has owned properties– things like a company website or blog.
Beginning a Healthy Online Reputation Management Plan for your Business
So now that you know what ORM is, how can you implement a plan to help your business’s online reputation? First, you need to know what kind of Online Reputation your company aspires to. Look at industry leaders in your company’s field for inspiration, then read on to learn how to create an ORM plan that’s right for you
#1 Assess Current Online Reputation
The first place to start is to learn what kind of online reputation your company already has. Luckily there are a few free websites that can help you, such as The Brand Grader, which can identify which blogs and news sites have featured your business in the last 30 days and help identify brand strengths and weaknesses. Another useful site for ORM is Google Alerts– set up an alert for your company’s name to be notified every google finds new content.
#2 Craft a Your Businesses Social Media Policy
A Social Media Policy is a set of rules and guidelines for how a company and its employees act online. It is important to set guidelines for appropriate posting topics and rules for how employees and customers act online. Make sure all content creators are on board with both the Social Media Policy and the Content Strategy, and clearly outline the owner’s right to remove and edit online content as they see fit. This ensures a united front for improving your Business’s Online Reputation.
#3 Create a Goal-Oriented Social Media Content Strategy & Monitor Results
Once you have confirmed your Social Media Policy you can begin working on your business’s content strategy, or how your business is going to create online content that betters their online reputation. First you have to determine your goal– is it to draw more traffic to your ecommerce store? To get more fans and followers, or raise overall brand awareness? After you figure out what you want to do, find social media platforms that align with the audience you are trying to reach. For example, a blog about banking and investing would likely do best on LinkedIn, while Pinterest and Facebook are better for lifestyle brands. Once you find your social media platforms you can follow the progress of your content using the social media sites analytics to see what content resonates with your audience and what doesn’t.
#4 Monitor and Manage your Company’s Online Reputation
Like any advertising, managing your company’s Online Reputation is a full-time job. Make use of the analytic tools available to you, such as Instagram Analytics. Facebook and Twitter also offer analytic tools which allow you to track how your content is being perceived. To monitor your online reputation you will need to follow the analytics of your company’s content, as well as reviews and mentions.
Make sure your business doesn’t get left behind. Contact Steven Lloyd Consulting and start making your online reputation work for you!