In this day of digital everything, it’s not enough to simply build your online presence via your website, social platforms and review sites – you have to maintain and grow it, as you would with any other area of your business. The same instant feedback and approvals that you love receiving through your social channels and review sites can, at most times, be tremendously helpful in generating awareness and growth for your brand. However, they can also negatively impact your bottom line if not closely monitored.
Vince Vitti, VP of Business Development at infinitee, recently attended the CampusConnex conference in Orlando, Florida and identified the following five best practices for online reputation management.
- Continuously monitor all platforms and respond quickly. Timeliness is everything and it also shows authenticity that your business cares and has concern for its customers.
- Have a dedicated employee as your responder. This person is responsible for monitoring and engaging with your audiences – both with positive comments and especially negative posts or reviews.
- Always keep responses positive, authentic and concise. Thank your customers for positive comments and bring negative conversations offline by having them contact your dedicated responder directly.
- Listen and engage. By truly hearing your customer out and showing genuine interest in their opinions and experience, you may often resolve the issue without further action.
- Never delete negative comments or postings. Business transparency is demanded in today’s digital world and showing the timeliness of your response goes a long way in offsetting any negative comments or reviews.
“It’s critical to watch your online reputation across every information outlet and engage appropriately every step of the way. Your online reputation is the direct result of the relationships you cultivate offline (and often the first thing people seek when learning who you are). Look into tools like Yext to make it easy. ” advises Chelsea Cannon, Digital Brand Strategist.
In short, bad reviews are going to happen, but with a little foresight and proper planning, you can spin them into a positive experience for all involved and effectively manage your online reputation in the process.