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Online reputation management (ORM) is a mixture of PR, content and SEO strategies to improve the online reputation, public perception and global reach of your brand, ensuring that it is attractive to both partners and customers. ORM can directly benefit your business.
As a business, we’ve seen many business owners in both the UK, U.S. and Europe becoming concerned about their brand online reputation, with more companies claiming to be worried about how they are perceived by others and portrayed in reviews. Many companies are concerned about the impact of online reputation management issues, which is why it is so important for every business to be able to manage their brand and business online.
Why is online reputation management so important?
Your online reputation directly impacts your ‘bottom line’. According to research, businesses can lose up to 22% of potential customers if they have one single negative result in Google searches. This number skyrockets to a whopping 70% if a person views 3 or more pieces of negative content. Over 67% of decisions are influenced by online reviews.
Online reputation management and reviews
It goes without saying that negative reviews will always have a detrimental impact of some kind, in comparison to the weight that positive reviews carry. All companies should invest in a structured brand reputation crisis management strategy, so that negative publicity surrounding their brand can be dealt with effectively.
You often only need one highly dissatisfied customer to offset excellent work and service you have had in dealing with 40 others. Yes, you read that number correctly! The ratio describing the difference of impact between negative and positive reviews is 1:40 – it takes 40 positive reviews to offset one bad review. Many businesses employ online reputation management experts to advise them on the nature of reviews, and so the business and its employees know how to react when subjected to bad reviews.
Another challenge businesses face is that happy customers are also much less likely to leave a much-needed positive review if they have been satisfied with the service provided.
To aid online reputation management, it is extremely important for a business to manage reviews and proactively build protocols for customer service and social media to handle negative feedback.
A negative piece of press coverage from a reputable source can wound a brand’s online perception in a much deeper way.
What happens to your online reputation when you are affected by bad press?
Even after years of having a spotless reputation and delivering outstanding service to customers, a scandal directly related to an executive of an international business or one single piece of bad press can scare off potential clients and new business if the matter isn’t properly dealt with.
When a negative piece of press about you or your business appears online and it is from a reputable publisher, it can rank among the top search results on Google, Baidu or Bing.
This means that it is possible that a person will Google your company or look for terms associated with your company, and instantly become exposed to a piece of bad press.
What should you do if your company is hit by bad press coverage?
If you have received a piece of bad press, you should generally look for professional support through reputation crisis management to contain the situation as soon as possible.
The longer the wait, the more clicks on the article in question and the longer it will take for your brand to recover its reputation. It is not legal to delete a bad press article from a reputable source, however unfair it is to your overall business.
Reputation management experts can however help to strengthen your online presence to the point of counter-balancing the weight of a bad article, making it slide down Google’s rankings to a place where it is less visible to people looking for your brand.