How to understand the importance of online reputation management of any brand? To see the truthfulness of this affirmation, it is enough to answer a simple question: What appears in the search results when somebody enters your business or brand name? If this is not your own websites, social profiles and blogs then your online reputation is potentially vulnerable to capture instantly!
It is much easier to plan some steps to strengthen the reputation now than to try and remove something defamatory from the Internet later. Online reputation is equal to have a brand image traditionally and that’s why letting such an important thing slide is and by all means, should be unacceptable.
When you think of the phrase “online reputation management”, you probably think about large corporations with a huge number of customers and contracts that are always in the front pages. This is incorrect. Online reputation management is important for a much larger number of companies and even for small businesses, especially today, in the era of the global internet.
1. Protect domain names in full compliance
One of the easiest and effective ways to protect your name and online brand is a simple domain name registration. If possible, try to consolidate all variations of your name such as yourbusiness.com, yourbusiness.net, and yourorganization.org.
It is also useful to register not only your brand name but any names associated with the business too.
Another good rule is to register any domain names that can be used against your brand, for example, yourbusinessnameisbad.com.
2. Create a blog on your website
What you see in the search results about your company, brand or website has a lot more to do with the type of content you post on your website, then you might have thought. In most cases, the more regularly and frequently you post content, the higher your chances to reach the top positions in the search rankings. You have to be sure that you create content that people are looking for and not just about you looking to be on the top.
However, when creating content, do not neglect the usage of keywords and phrases that people may type in the search bar next to your name (for example: reviews “company name”, “name” complaints). These primarily are referred to long tail keywords or key-phrases.
Also to remember is that the published content is not just 200 words of text on any topic. The Internet has already formed certain rules on ‘how to write a good content’. Of course, if you are a good author, it will not be a problem, however, if you have no talents or lack of time, it does not allow you to give attention to writing a quality post, you can ask the professionals for help.
3. Create your profile on every social network
More than 2 billion users spread across all major social networks. Keeping your name active in each of them is hard work. Each social network allows you to set a unique URL and username for your accounts. Register accounts for your personal and business name. If your desired username is already taken, try to ensure its closure through the administration of the source or try to contact the person who already owns it to resolve this issue. Social profiles are very easy to rank on the main search results page for personal and business names, so this simple and efficient process is required for any business or brand.
4. Earn the credibility
Everyone is able to create a website, blog and multiple social profiles in the network but building your reputation as an authoritative source takes much more time and work. One of the best ways to do this is to create a high quality and valuable content on your website that your customers like to refer to and share ahead. Another way to present yourself as a credible source is by putting up quotes on news sites and creating guest posts for the best blogs in your niche. This process takes time but it will definitely give you a financial return.
5. Avoid bad Search Engine Optimization
A great way to lose control of your online reputation is to enrage Google and make them penalize your site. You will not only be damaged by Google, but it will also move your search ranking lower and make your competitors rank above you. To meet the high standards of Google, be sure to watch their latest updates search algorithms and create your own SEO-texts in accordance with the best practices of Penguin, Panda, and Hummingbird.
6. Form your online and offline presence
Even if your business focuses only on online services, you probably have a location where you perform the majority of key operations or another place with a specific address. This means that you can take advantage of the local advertising catalogs or websites. If your business is built on a local basis, it should be placed at the top of the list. Local advertising is not only very effective; it is also quite easily controlled and ranked because the range of your competitors is much smaller.
7. Monitor online reviews and customer feedback
The last and most important way to control your online reputation is always to monitor what people are saying about your business. It’s pretty easy to implement using Google Alerts if you connect the name of your company or brand to it. If you are a locally oriented business or a restaurant, your main focus should be shifted to sites such as Yelp, TripAdvisor, Superpages, Urbanspoon, and others.
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