If you are in business today you will be very well aware of how powerful the Internet can be as a marketing platform; and this can work both for and against you in a nanosecond.
The Internet gives power to the consumer and social media and online platforms now allow good and bad news and reviews to be shared around the globe 24/7.
Sadly, we all know it’s a fact of human nature that bad news and reviews are often greater click-bait than the good stuff, so for any business owner it’s important that you monitor what is being said about your business online and fuel as much good news and content as you can. If bad news or reviews appear, then stand up and comment in a positive and constructive way. This way your customers and potential customers will see that you care and be able to see both sides; not just the negative one posted by the disgruntled reviewer; who, incidentally, may very well be having a bad day and you are unfortunately on the receiving end of this. A positive response from you may be all that is needed to correct matters for all – and win you a friend in the reviewer too.
The power of online PR
Here at Infoserve we work with small and medium-sized businesses throughout the UK; helping get them found online for the products and services they provide, and we know that time is precious for such businesses and their owners. However, please do not underestimate the power of good – and bad, online PR.
Reputations can be made and broken very quickly online and it pays to keep up-to-date with what is being said about your business.
A simple way to do this is set up Google Alerts for your business name and related searches; this way any time that your business is mentioned online you stand a good chance of being alerted. Another way is to do regular searches for your business and see what appears on the general web and also within news and blogs categories. Just be aware – and respond when you feel you need to.
You can use social media and the online world to promote your business and its services/products; post regularly and you can also send out the odd press release to let the wider world know what you are up to. Perhaps you or members of staff are raising money for charity; perhaps you have just won a major new contract; are creating new jobs; have sponsored a local football team, or have recruited a new member of staff. Get a piece in the local or regional press and this is all good for your reputation. The story will more often than not appear in the publication and also on its website; so when people search for your company online they will see what good work you do.
The jigsaw puzzle of reputation has more pieces nowadays but with some careful use of resource, you can use the pieces to your advantage. If you have a trusted member of staff, you could enlist their help. Perhaps give the job of looking after social media and brand reputation to this person, but have a clear approval and reporting structure in place. Remember that no one will care about your business as much as you do.
The Internet is a powerful place, but with some time, effort and a little expertise you can use that power to the advantage of your business.
Need help managing all your online reviews on all the different directories, social media and publishers out there? Infoserve can help you manage all your reviews, all in one place. Listing Manager gives you ‘Reputation Manager’ which gives you an easy-to-use dashboard to instantly reply to all your online reviews!