From Prevention to Action: The Importance of Online Reputation for Businesses

The users rely more on the opinion of others, the experts, and of course, much more than what they can tell them or tell their own brands and companies.

It is companies should not forget to prepare to face a crisis of reputation. That is why it is really essential and important to closely monitor the online reputation of our business, working all the aspects that surround it and those issues that can affect directly to improve it and keep it intact avoiding problems and “bad language” Major problems in the form of real online reputation crises.

Action and prevention. They are premises in which many experts agree as Joseba Cortázar, communication director and official spokesperson of Toprural points out in this regard that although online reputation can not be controlled, the less you can work. In fact, 76% of Social Media crises could have been avoided.

In this sense, Ginés Bastida, a journalist specialized in Corporate and Institutional Communication, currently in the agency Spokesperson, highlights how sooner or later, almost all companies are affected by what in terms of marketing is called “crisis of Reputation”, which may be produced by the most diverse factors. Companies that have prepared themselves for these “reputation crises” will deal with them and react in a much more effective way, significantly reducing the impact on their image.

As one basic premise of business communication says, “If you do not speak, others will do it for you.” Therefore, it is essential to offer verified information, predicted in advance, so that rumors or personal opinions do not become the information of what happened.

Keeping up to date and quickly learning how to manage reputation online is a priority.

The main problem that many companies have had to face is to try to control the situations that gave rise to real fires in the network and crisis of reputation on their brands. Although some companies have managed to maneuver intelligently, the vast majority are in a position of defenselessness since they lack protocols and action plans to deal with such problems.

A reputation crisis can be generated at a specific time, by a particular problem, event or event in which a brand or company is involved or with which it is directly related. However, it can also occur progressively when a negative and generalized perception manifests itself in a continuous way, as an account, through opinions and comments of users and consumers. 

That is why, for companies, it is a priority to catch up and learn quickly to manage their reputation online because not doing so could mean leaving the door open to the arrival of major problems and evils. Thus,

It is impossible to control everything that is said about a brand on the internet. What you can control is the quality and response timing. It is important, therefore, to have both the tools and the equipment needed to solve and correct these types of limit situations.

Daniel Dévai, Dtor. Of Social Media from Epsilon Technologies is blunt in stating that “You can not control everything that people say about you. What you can control is the quality and timing of your response.

Prevention is the best defense plan. Have a strategy of action against an adverse situation for the brand in the online medium; That allows to have clear the way to act, to avoid to sail to the drift in the sea of ​​the improvisation. Every company must have a dedicated team to monitor and manage the actions of the brand every day; Use a CRM-like system and the necessary tools that allow you to carry out your work in a professional way, and also be especially prepared to act in this type of scenarios. It is also advisable to carry out drills internally to check the type of response that the company is able to give.

However, if we really want to look after the online reputation of our business and work on it effectively, we should ask ourselves some important questions to figure out the way forward to achieve such a feat successfully.

Do you know what is said about your brand on the internet?

Knowing what is said or opined about our brand, company or business is paramount and the information base on which to start working. For this, it is best to use the specific tools that help us to monitor and follow those conversations where our company or brand are present.

How satisfied are your customers?

Find out what your customers say about your brand and product; About customer service and even about your pricing policy. They are the best source of information, ask them directly. To do this, launch an action to know your opinion and encourages participation. 

Would you be willing to recommend?

79% of dissatisfied customers do not hesitate to convey their discomfort, but it is not so common that customers who are happy with the service received openly publicize. However, these customers would be willing to speak in your favor, if they get something in return. Encourage your recommendations with unique benefits, or economic benefits. This is a small investment that can be of great benefit. 

Do you count on a community of loyal followers to your brand?

If you work properly your presence online, you will attract an audience interested in your sector, that you can be loyal if you provide relevant content and encourage interaction. In this way they will trust in you, speak on your behalf and act in your defense where necessary. 

How do you react to a comment you do not like?

Nobody is perfect, and the brands either. He admits that something can fail, or that at any given moment your client does not agree with the attention received and let you know. In this type of situations, you must know how to manage them properly and get ahead, without undermining your reputation online. Remember: A complaint is always an opportunity to improve, and mistakes are learned. 

What do you do to take care of your reputation online?

First of all, you have to have a strategy, based on the goal you want to achieve. It includes in it the type of actions to be developed, both its nature and content; As well as the means that you will use to spread the good name of your brand through the network. 

Online reputation is not created overnight, but it is important to sow positive comments there, relevant articles there to reap positive results and, in the event of an attack, have an important shield of protection that cushion the impact. On the other hand, do not forget to have a crisis management plan, which will help you know how to react and minimize the consequences.

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