There was a saying from the famous Warren Buffet that goes, “it [can take] 20 years to build and establish a reputation and only 5 minutes to ruin it.”
This is a quote that resonates (or should resonate) with just about every business owner. This is because it perfectly depicts how fragile running a business can be. Unfortunately, today’s digital age only exacerbates this. Nowadays, you can ruin your reputation even quicker with social media and consumer opinions being shared so readily at the touch of a button.
It can be something as simple as making a late delivery, the customer having poor interactions with your customer service agent, or something else. But, unfortunately, the littlest things can turn into big problems for a business. It can lead to poor reviews across various review sites, social media criticism, and more.
As a business owner, you’re likely already wearing multiple hats in your business. Because of this, you may not think you have the time it takes to handle your business’ reputation. However, while you may be limited on time, that doesn’t mean you don’t have control over your company’s reputation.
Many business owners operate under the impression that it’s something beyond their control. The truth is, your reputation can be effectively managed online. Here are some of the best tips to help you build a winning reputation for your business.
- Plant Flags
One of the first things you need to be doing is planting your company’s flags across your digital properties. A lot of businesses make the mistake of not claiming their business’ properties across the web. This can be very important because you will find your business being talked about in various places. While your website is the most important, the work doesn’t stop there.
You need to secure your company’s name across the web, including on Google, local businesses listings, various community sites, review sites, and more. It would be best if you were creating a business listing everywhere possible. You want to have your business’ presence on every digital property that has conversations taking place.
One of the best tools for claiming your sites across different places on the Internet would be KnowEm. Also, you can use ReviewTrackers to find, listen, and manage customer conversations across the various review websites being used by your customers.
- Keep Everything Updated
Another thing you need to do across the various digital properties you are using is to keep everything updated. You want to constantly update all of your business’ information across the Internet. The more updated your information is, the better you will attract customers. So it would be best if you had everything, including your business’ name, phone number, address, and other information, to help a customer reach or contact your business.
You want to have everything available to make it easy to find and verify your business’ information. Believe it or not, but as many as 37% of businesses don’t have the proper name on their listing. This has cost these businesses as much as $10.3 billion in lost sales. As you can probably tell, paying attention to your business listings is important.
It can be the difference between gaining a new customer or having one bounce off your listing onto a competitor. Ensure that you provide all of the relevant and necessary information needed for a prospective customer to make a buying decision.
- Showcase Your Social Media Savvy
Social media is one of the best ways to communicate with your audience and to engage with them. Therefore, it would be best to leverage social media to gain new customers and interact and engage with existing ones. This can help you build a better reputation and garner more brand loyalty.
- Respond To Feedback
When you are looking to manage your reputation across the marketplace, you absolutely must do to respond to feedback. It would be best to respond to any feedback posted about your business, both good and bad. You want to keep an eye on TripAdvisor, Yelp, Google, Foursquare, and more.
All of these review-based websites will be where prospective customers look to see whether or not your business has the social proofing they need to do business with you. You want to respond to both criticism and good feedback. By responding to negative feedback, you can showcase that you care about your customers. It can show prospective customers that you will do things to make it right if they ever have a bad experience themselves.