What’s Your Online Reputation?

by | Sep 25, 2023

In marketing, there’s a lot of different forms of marketing as it keeps evolving. However, traditional marketing is not going away.

The following is a guest post from our friends over at Long & Short of It, masters of ideation, customer insights and market research. They like to say they “dig and find lots of data and then turn it into actionable insights.” Following is their guest post. 

The reputation you have with your customers is critical.

That should not come as new news to anyone running a business. How your customers perceive your products and services has a direct impact on future sales and it directly affects prospects consideration. The online community can be both a huge boost as well as a land-mine. Anyone with access to the internet, so basically everyone, can impact how you are perceived. So, what to do?

If you have read any of our articles, there is often one common theme in there, have a plan. It’s better to proactively manage your reputation than to let the social media world run it for you and be in a reactionary mode, especially if there are negative comments.

Assess where you are now

Start with an assessment of where you are today by taking a fresh look at your social media accounts. Understand where your customers are and that’s where you want to be. Depending on the size of your company and the resources you have, you may not need to be everywhere. For example, in our company, and given our target audience, we don’t need to be on TikTok. Then take the time to read the comments and the level of engagement your audience has with your posts. Get a good sense of what people are generally saying and how much is positive, negative, or just neutral.

Engage and boost

This is where the heavier lifting comes into play. It’s increasingly important to engage with your target audience online and this applies to B2B as much as it does in B2C companies. Are you posting regularly? How often you need to varies by the type of company and the channel. For some it might be a few times per week and for others at least once every two weeks. Your marketing team or agency can help determine the proper cadence.

Stay on top of the questions or comments

Try to respond to customer questions within 24 hours if possible. If someone states something incorrectly, it is appropriate to provide the correct answer. If someone says something negative, don’t react until you can assess the validity of the statement and provide a professional response. And given that anyone can say anything, not all comments necessitate a response. Ensure you have a trusted person responsible to answer questions with clear guidelines to help them understand when to escalate or bring in specific expertise.

Content matters

Finally, review what you are posting. Don’t always make it a sales push, but look to educate, inform, and at times, entertain – just be sure to keep it in your brand voice. Be sensitive to the medium you are using. With LinkedIn for example, keep it primarily business oriented. It’s fine to let your personal or company brand personality come through, but it’s probably best to avoid touchy societal topics

Take the time to assess where you are, continuously engage with your target audience and never stop generating content that matters to your target audience. Your brand reputation is critical to maintain, and as Warren Buffet once said, “It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it. If you think about that, you’ll do things differently.”

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