How and Why to Check Your Online Reputation

Have you googled yourself or your business lately? You should.

Relationship building through social media is a prime business function. But just as effectively as you can build business this way, others can destroy you — and you might not even know it.

Whether you’re a small business or large, your customer base is going to talk about you online.

In watching a video about brand equity the other day I was struck with the assortment of variables that require time and attention from marketing authorities.

Building a reputation is offense; you also need a defense. A tweet, email, social media post or review write-up can just as easily unravel a carefully crafted business persona, especially when you consider how much faster bad news travels.

The following might serve as a checklist.

Why Reviews Matter

With the latest technological advances of the Internet, you’ll find that anyone who is capable of using a computer will be able to write a review or describe your product or service in an inaccurate light.

This can damage the reputation of your company, especially if the comments were unwarranted. However, if the review is genuine, you can utilize the review as powerful feedback that will help you improve your business.

People who leave positive comments can enlighten you to the areas that you are doing right.

If someone offers complaints or comments unfavorably, you can use this to correct the areas where your business is at its weakest.

A man checks Twitter on an iPhone.

SEO

You can begin by selecting a popular search engine such as Google, Bing or Yahoo.

You can then monitor your reviews on popular sites the likes of Yelp, Yahoo and Yext. You can also begin your search by typing in your company name and seeing what the search engine returns.

This will include blogs, reviews, comments, social media posts and photos.

As you scroll through your findings, you’ll be able to ascertain the areas where you need improvement, as well as your laudatory business features.

Maintenance

Since it’s easier to maintain your business than rebuild it, you’ll want to monitor your company’s reputation periodically.

By making it a point to procure a good business reputation, you’ll be able to take command of any negativity immediately after it happens, instead of letting it fester and cause further harm. Today’s tough economic times are trying on your customers, and they want to feel that they are being valued.

If they don’t, they’ll find a company that can deliver on its promises.

Looking into every piece of negativity at the various review sites can improve your performance and boost your improvement rating.

If you neglect to monitor your responses about the business, you may fail to see that you have a problem, especially if customers are leaving the same complaint about your company.

Achieve Greatness

There are a number of search tools you can utilize for your business that will alert you to any comments or chatter about your company via email. You can put together various key words that make the searches easier to stay on top of such as your business name, products, services and brand. You can also monitor the most popular review sites and do your own research.

With the dawn of the Internet, businesses now have to contend with online review sites and search engines that tell the world what a customer thinks about your company.

When you monitor your online reputation, you’ll be able to combat the issue before it becomes a problem and ensure that your company is displayed in its best possible light.

 

Terry Duschinski credits a video about brand equity for turning his attention to the damage that can be done when you’re not vigilant in protecting a reputation you’ve worked exhaustingly hard to cultivate.

 

Photo: http://www.flickr.com/photos/stevegarfield/4247757731/

About Terry Duschinski

A former newspaper reporter and magazine editor, who entered the fitness industry first in corporate marketing at an equipment manufacturer, and then as an operator of personal training studios, now returning to his journalism roots as a blogger.

Comments

  1. Hi Terry,

    Thanks for sharing. I don’t really monitor my online influence (as I call it) but this article really make me think. Haha. By default, I would check how my followers are doing (some weird and crazy way for me to determine my presence) on a monthly basis.

    Well written and thanks for everything!
    ~Reginald

    • Same here Reginald, I seldom check mine as well. But after reading this one from Terry, it made me step back and look again on my own investments (that’s what I call my blogs :) ).

      Thanks Terry for sharing this.

  2. This is a great post. Thanks. There is no doubt you need to manage your reputation and presence online. A great tool for this is Klout.

  3. Hi,Terry. I like your article. It is very informative so it is very useful for my job.Thanks for sharing this post. Hope to read more helpful information from you.

  4. Thank you so much for sharing these Terry. I know how important an online reputation is but honestly, I don’t really give much time monitoring it. I will start monitoring those now and I will surely the tips you gave.

  5. This is a wonderful post. I have never even thought of checking my online reputation. But now your post maade me to think I have excluded a major part.Need to defintely check this.Many thanks for this informational writeup

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