With the vast amount of online platforms that house information about your business, it can be overwhelming to monitor your online business reputation. Dedicating time each week to cultivate this information is well worth the effort because it could make or break the future success of your company. Consumers are highly receptive to online reviews, with as many as 90% of consumers reported in one study admitting that their buying decisions were influenced by online reviews. This means that bad reviews can have a large impact on your business, but positive reviews can have even greater impact if you’re strategic.
Here are steps for monitoring your online business reputation:
1. Cultivate and display your own social proof
First and foremost it is imperative that you take your business reputation into your own hands. You can do this by cultivating social proof through testimonials and case studies to show on your website and other various platforms online. You know your customers and the results they have received from working with you better than anyone else. Making this information readily available by posting it to multiple places online will help you promote and control the positive conversation surrounding your brand, while shadowing the negative feedback that you find.
2. Maintain and monitor social media pages for comments, feedback, and reviews.
Social media platforms are the first or second place potential customers are going to look while researching your company. How does your brand appear on major social media platforms? Once you have an established social media presence, monitoring user responses through comments, tweets, reviews, among other communication methods will help you stay on top of all of the feedback you receive. Yes, it is important to respond to negative customer feedback and inquiries, but it’s even more important to make sure you’re responding to the positive feedback you receive frequently. For example if a customer gives you a shout out for a product that they love, thank them! Taking the time to show gratitude on social media will help you cultivate a more positive atmosphere online. Once your social media pages reach an established point when monitoring feedback on an individual basis becomes overwhelming, it is smart to invest in a social media management tool. A great example of this kind of tool is Hootsuite.
3. Set up Google Alerts
Using google alerts you can receive email notifications regularly when specific keywords you choose appear about your company. This will allow you to stay on top of conversation surrounding your company that may take some digging to find otherwise. Not only can google alerts be useful to monitor your business reputation, they also help you remain on top of industry news.
4. Research your competitors
It is extremely important to monitor your online reputation, but it’s also important to know how you compare to your competitors. Check out their social media pages, website, and other information regarding their business online to see what customers like and dislike about them. This is also a great way to continuously make your strategy better by seeing what they’re doing that’s working, and where you excel in comparison.
5. Have a customer service plan in place
Customers want responses to their questions and concerns quickly. This means that in order to stay on top of this part of your business’s reputation you need to have a plan in place. First, establish who in your business will be responsible for this type of client communication. Taking a group approach to this area typically doesn’t work well. Once you have an individual or team established, create communication funnels and common responses to help with efficiency. There are tools, like Groove, for example that allow you to manage your customer service in the form of tickets. These tools help you stay organized on the status of request better than your general email. Another piece of customer service is to make it as easy as possible for your customers to get in contact with you. Create forms, list contact information, and place chat pop-ups on your website to ensure customers can get in touch with you almost instantaneously.
The internet is a fast paced and ever changing environment. By following these 5 best practices for monitoring your online business reputation you can ensure that your brand remains in a positive light. What other steps does your company take to stay on top of its online reputation? Comment below!
Posted in: Reputation Management