Reputation Management has stark similarities with Public Relations because they both deal with the reputation of companies. It takes years to develop and maintain brand loyalty among customers, but just a single negative review to topple it.
You may think one negative comment may not do anything to harm your brand, but that is just the tip of an iceberg. A small crack in the expensive china is all it takes to render it useless; your brand is like china where a single doubt in the minds of customers could ruin your business. Eventually, negative reviews can take the whole affair to search engines, proving once again that Google is the biggest determinant of your reputation.
The most depressing fact about this is that a negative review about you will never be forgotten. If it was a newspaper review or a magazine article, people will forget about it eventually and you can go about building your brand and ease the negativity, but the internet is a different ball game altogether. It is not easy to neutralize the negative impressions made about your brand and amplify the positive ones unless you get a reputation management service to work it out for you.
There are two reasons why the negative reviews stay with you like a bad taste in your mouth. As mentioned earlier, negative reviews are like unwanted guests that never seem to leave and nobody is above it, not even the so-called big shot brands.
1. Ripoff report, Yelp and Consumer Report are some channels through which forums are created and the constant addition of content make them regularly visited sites. It is not easy to escape their grasp.
2. Google has an auto suggest feature, where when somebody types in your company name, Google instantly pitches in and suggests related news. Apart from helping people find your website, it will also lead them to negative reviews, however old it was. So if you want to keep building your brand, you have to avoid these negative suggestions.
Fighting Bad Publicity With SEO
It has been proved that nobody is immune to the scythe of bad publicity. Some companies take it in their stride and convert the bad publicity in their favor and turn the tables. They do it with the help of SEO. The first method in this process is through the use of keywords that describe your business. Change marketing tactics by using different, but relevant keywords and focus your SEO on those words, so the negative reviews do not come up so often. Start responding to the bad reviews and explain what went wrong. This would increase people’s confidence in you. So the idea here would be to create good press regarding your name and using the new keywords to steer away from the bad publicity.
Link building is another method through which you can generate some positive press. As link building is a major part of any SEO strategy, it shouldn’t be too difficult. Build links to counteract the effects of bad publicity by making use of sub-domains; those that are not related to your webpage, but would have links leading to your website. These could be corporate blogs, news sites and similar other pages.
You can even visit the site that gave you bad publicity and request them to give you rebuttal links. So if there was a bad review about your product/service, there would be another link in answer to that; perhaps a response from your company’s side that negates the incident.
The Internet is a constantly flowing stream, carrying with it both good things and bad. Proper reputation management can nullify the bad and the judicious use of SEO can amplify the good.
If you want to speak with a reputation management expert, get in touch with our team of reputable digital marketing strategists who can help you out.