What is Online Reputation Management and Why Is It Important to You
Reputation management is an important aspect of your overall marketing strategy that should not be neglected. Think about it. When was the last time you considered purchasing a product or service and you consulted the reviews first? Reviews or feedback can be found on any of the platforms such as Google My Business page, Foursquare, Google+, TripAdvisor (if you are a travel-related business), HungryGoWhere (if you have an eating establishment), Yelp, Facebook or even Amazon. Were you more inclined to purchase the product or service when you read mostly positive reviews as opposed to negative ones? It is likely that many negative reviews influenced your decision not to make a purchase. Here are statistics for you to consider:
- According to a BazaarVoice survey, 51% of people found user-generated content more important than the opinions of their family and friends.
- According to eMarketer.com research, 65% of users between the ages of 18-24 consider feedback on social networks before deciding on whether to buy.
- eTailing Group found that 92% of online users checked product reviews and 89% of people say that reviews are a big factor that affects their decision to purchase.
No one likes to be taken advantage of or shortchanged. It is in our nature that we desire to be treated with respect and courtesy. At the same time, we expect timely service and fairly-priced products and services. Similar to the queuing behavior seen at popular food stalls, we are more likely to buy something if it has gotten raving reviews by many others before us. People were more conservative in the past and used to think, “if you don’t have anything nice to say, just keep quiet about it”. With the increasing use of smart devices, people can now voice their frustrations instantly online on social media, review sites, etc. The new-found power in the hands of the consumer either make or break a business. Protect yourself with the right reputation management strategy to maintain a strong online reputation. Because everything is archived online for near posterity, any negative comments and reports tend to stick around. What’s worse, removal of all traces of libelous, biased or unfair feedback is nearly impossible in some cases.
Is Your Online Reputation Being Monitored Regularly?
Have you checked out any reviews people posted about your business lately? We appreciate positive, glowing reviews, but you do need to keep up to speed on what’s happening on social media, review sites, etc. A negative review, Facebook tirade, or Twitter tweet about your business can potentially spread like wildfire and be completely out of control within hours. If not managed, the bad publicity hurts the brand equity that the company worked so hard to build and may take years to recover from if at all. If you haven’t checked your company’s reputation lately, now is the time to check. Doing so just takes two simple steps.
- Open up a new window in your favorite web browser.
- Type in your business/company name in Singapore or with a corresponding neighborhood (Queenstown, Woodlands, Orchard, Tampines, etc.), plus the word “review” to see what comes up
- Once you have a quick look at the reviews, return to this page for further instructions.
Studies in human behavior reveal that people are more likely to tell their friends about a business if their expectations were exceeded or if they were disappointed (even slightly). It is in the extremes where people are more motivated to leave feedback. What this means is for customers who are only satisfied (where you did just the minimum to get by), they are not likely to comment much about your company. You must have noticed one of the following scenarios:
- No reviews.
- Some good reviews and some bad ones.
- Mostly good reviews.
- Mostly bad reviews.
You could have seen no reports whatsoever on review sites or social media about your company or products/services. If so, it is not necessarily a time to rejoice because your customers haven’t found your business important enough to comment on it. It means you’ve got work to do to make your business outstanding in the eyes of your customers.
There could also be a mix of good and bad. If the proportion is approximately 50-50, you may have work to do to remedy your situation.
If there are mostly good reviews, well done! Don’t be resting on your laurels though.
It is important that with every situation where you get negative reviews that you go through the negative reviews with a fine tooth comb to see if they are accurate or are if they are just unrealistic. Some are of customers who expect the moon and didn’t get it. Others are spot on, and you’ll want to address those who had a genuine gripe about your business.
If you see mostly bad reviews that are reflective of the way you do business, however, you’ve got an uphill climb ahead. Unless it is your intention to run a fly-by-night business, it is time to reevaluate how you treat your clients and whether you consider them long term assets to your business. After all, a happy client is more likely to refer other clients who in turn refer more clients.
When it comes to negative reviews, we aren’t talking about that occasional frivolous adverse review out of 100 good reviews that will shut your business down overnight. We may try but it just isn’t possible to make all customers happy 100% of the time. There are times where some customers simply won’t be happy no matter what you do and there isn’t much that can be done anything about it. Rather, we are referring to the handling of genuinely dissatisfied customers where you could have made things right with them but didn’t. It is possible in some situations to turn the losing situation into a positive experience for that unhappy client. Making things right for that complaining customer turns them into a raving fan who’ll recommend you even more business down the road because they know you’ll be there to take care of them and their friends and family.
Is Your Business’ Online Reputation At Risk Of or Under Attack Currently?
Bad reviews can damage your business reputation. Ignoring bad feedback may seem to be the way to go at first but in most cases works against you and creates a poor perception of your business, one that appears to be indifferent towards its customers. It also takes a long time for any new and good reviews to suppress the bad ones.
The more proactive way of dealing with bad feedback is by responding to these comments promptly that makes you come across as a business that truly is interested in a customer’s satisfaction.
As the owner of the company, you already have many things on your plate with all the day-to-day responsibilities of ensuring your business runs smoothly. The last thing you probably want to do is add reputation management on your list of responsibilities.
So what’s the solution to managing the reputation management aspect of your business effectively?
When you hire us to manage your online reputation, we perform the research needed, followed by obtaining and responding to customer reviews.
Is Reputation Management Right For You?
You might be thinking: “my business is OK, and I haven’t seen any bad reviews yet. How can this help me?”
Would you like MORE business? If you are content with your present situation and have all the business you want, you probably don’t need us.
On the other hand, if you like more customers and want improved outcomes from your marketing efforts, why not see how our reputation management services will benefit your bottom line?
As marketing strategists, we put together a highly personalized method to managing a company’s reputation online. Doing so ensures that everything is tailored especially for your business situation. Give us a call today at 6655-3558 to take a more proactive role to your company’s reputation.