Managing Your Reputation

by Meryl K Evans | Category: Business, Meryl's Notes Blog, Social Media 4 comments

I’ve been reluctant about guest posts because they rarely offer value and most of them write 10 versions of the same article to post everywhere. Not Matt Polsky. Matt did something different. He addressed me by name and his email included specifics about my blog. He also suggested a topic that worked for readers like you. That’s the way to reach a blogger. Take it, Matt.

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Businesses should take care in monitoring their brand name. From the first day and throughout the life of the company, managers need to use monitoring apps and searches to watch what is being said about their company. Not only does this apply to large businesses with many employees, but to small businesses and one-person businesses as well.

Ignoring customer comments and views devastate a business’ brand and negatively affect your personal image. Because one-person business owners have a tendency to use both their name and their business’ name simultaneously, online reputation management grows more important. To protect your name and business’ name, use the following online reputation management techniques.

Use Basic Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

SEO used to be the go-to for all online reputation management needs. Although it isn’t the only technique to use, it remains important. Following SEO guidelines  allows business owners to make sure that their names appear high in the search engine results and prevent poor press from being easily seen on these same search pages.

Great content and keywords contribute to SEO. After Google’s Panda update, content has become king, the better the content and the more people share it, the better it is for you. A great spot to start for content creation is a blog. Starting a blog is not hard and you can provide your customers with relevant information and show off your expertise.

Businesses researching their competitors look for who is linking to them and what anchor text they are using. However, for someone such as a writer, this would not be a time efficient option since you would have millions of competitors to research. Now if you are a niche writer who write about a certain topic that has fewer  competitors, the research may be worth it.

Dominate Social Media

For individuals who run their businesses under a different title, they need to have an account on numerous social media sites for not only their own personal name, but also for their businesses name. Each of your accounts on these sites, both personal and professional, need to convey the same image that you are a professional providing quality products or services.

While your professional social media sites may be more focused on your products or services, your personal sites need to indicate that you are a professional business owner. This consistency makes it easier for potential customers to find you trustworthy, which will make them more inclined to give you their business. Other reasons why you need to be using social networking sites include:

  • Gain feedback from customers.
  • Engage followers in a positive avenue.
  • Manage and correct any negative press received.
  • Grow ranking factor for search engines.

Remember when working on social networking sites, it is important to keep them frequently updated. A neglected account can be worse than no account at all and lead to negative press. If you receive negative comments, respond immediately and rectify the situation, or at least show you are working to resolve it to make both parties happy. Remember negative comments aren’t the only ones that merit a response. If customers compliment, thank them and work toward turning them into brand advocates.

The rise of social media has made brand management a priority for everyone, even college students seeking employment. Politicians have ruined their careers over tweets, while Facebook photos have costs professionals their jobs. It takes years to build your reputation and merely a bad tweet, comment or photo to ruin it.

About the Guest Blogger

Matt Polsky is the Senior Content and Reputation Manager for VA Mortgage Center.com. Managing VA Mortgage Center reviews, and sharing insights learned from the nation’s leading provider of VA home loans.

How do you manage your reputation? What do you monitor? How do you respond to comments about you or your business?

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4 comments

  • Posted by Gene Marks on August 10th, 2011, 11:28 AM

    Great point about social media – so many people don’t realize that what’s out there is out there, and once something is said, it’s out there forever. Words matter. Excellent post!

    Gene Marks
    http://www.twitter.com/genemarks

  • Posted by Meryl on August 11th, 2011, 2:37 PM

    Gene, absolutely. I don’t like to look at my old blog posts, but I won’t delete them even if they’re irrelevant or talk about a website that’s dead. It’s already out there.

  • Posted by Customer Service Outsourcing on August 18th, 2011, 1:53 AM

    A lesson learned for this article. Reputation should be value. In SEO can serve a big help in popularizing a website but making sure that white hat SEO technique should be done to gain respect and good reputation on your business site.

  • Posted by spokane website design on September 16th, 2011, 3:03 PM

    Great Post. I agree if you are going to do social media you need to keep on it or not do it at all. More and more I’m seeing people who need a better understanding of reputation management.

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