Should Online Reputation Management be a Part of Your PR Strategy?
You had great sales this year better than two years back. Recently, you set up another office next door and hired a new staff for operation. Now, you are striving to become a well-known brand in the industry. And, the work is going fine! One day, you see a fake complaint published three months back on an online platform where you have created a client. This chops off your sales by 20% and getting no more orders. Is it the end of your business story? Perhaps, if you knew it earlier the loss could be recovered.
A lot of businessmen barely monitor what customers and competitors are saying about them online. In digital marketing sphere, the practice of monitoring and managing the public’s perception of an individual or organization is called Online Reputation Management (ORM). A bad news or rumor published on forums, complaint sites, or social media is vulnerable. As the internet is a new communication mode with more than 3 billion users worldwide, many Public Relations agencies in India offer online reputation management services.
Regardless how good your public relations are, a little negative publicity can adversely affect your overall reputation. If you are concerned with your brand reputation, ORM should be a must-have in PR strategy. Why? Let us discuss it along the lines:
- User-generated content is more significant than what you may think
Unlike marketing buzzwords or sales pitch you use for every campaign, user-generated content includes reviews, testimonials, word-of-mouth referrals, etc., created and shared by customers themselves. Think of how two good reviews of delivery service restaurant increase its ratings online. Such rating is directly proportional to its revenue. Well, that’s because user-generated content is indomitable and trustworthy. Your potential customers would trust your existing customers more because the experience counts. So, if your existing customer or even ex-employee says something bad about you online, the new ones would trust them more than you. Mark the words “trust is crucial for all your Marketing & PR efforts.”
- Passive attitude online is a bad omen for your brand reputation
Be it a derogatory comment on your social media business profile or a fraudulent feedback on your website, if you ignore it once, new customers will ignore you twice. Being a company, it is your responsibility to respond to each of your customers, instead of rolling your eyes over their remarks. Not responding to their tweets, abandoning the responsibility, and running away from the issue is unsatisfactory on your end. This happens most of the time when we have less social media interactions and often skip what hundreds of people are talking about us. (You can outsource this job to any PR agency!)
- Poor SEO rankings lead to poor business revenue
It’s a universal truth that SEO ranking of a website is a catalyst for sales of an organization. Ranking in the top of the SERP means more business leads, more conversions, and more sales. But, search engines count the kind of online reputation your brand has! Negative online media coverage means low priority in search engine’s algorithm. So, you must have a positive content creation strategy handy.
How can ORM negate the negative media coverage?
In the digital age, ORM is a sort of PR strategy that can help to carve your public image as positive, genuine, and trustworthy. ORM strategy consists following a set of practices for aiding your brand reputation:
- Frequent social media and online interactions which keep you abreast of what others are saying about your products and services.
- Addressing the customers’ inconveniences and strategic planning to curb those for customer satisfaction.
- Identifying the precise audience for better PR & marketing campaigns as you interact with the users on one-to-one.
Builds customers’ trust and loyalty as you can better justify your side of the story to them with transparency.