Online reputation management can be tricky, which is why many businesses choose to hire someone to manage their brand reputation for them. An online reputation is a lot more than just the ratings that a business has on Google Business, Yelp, Facebook, etc. It includes brand mentions online (or strategies to Brand Yourself), social media reputations, user reviews, presence on service sites or in marketplaces, and many more aspects.
You can try to see how your brand looks by Googling your company, but unless you have nothing to do but Google your company around the clock you are going to miss a lot of what is going on. There are some tools that can help with that, but they are not going to help you interpret the results. For that you need a marketing genius, and that is where having someone manage your online reputation can really come in handy.
There are a lot of basics that you need to keep in mind when it comes to keeping your brand reputation shiny online, even if you do hire an online reputation management firm. For example, they can help keep an eye on what is going on, but you need to do your best to keep things looking good by not engaging in controversy to start with either.
To start with you need to remember that nothing is ever private. Even if you think that something is marked private online when you post it on social media that doesn’t mean it won’t trickle out. One simple screenshot by a wayward employee and your privacy is violated as is your brand. Nothing ever goes away so if there is anything you think you would ever second guess, just don’t say it.
Along the same note, you have to make sure not to argue, even if you are rightly incensed. If someone leaves you a bad review simply respond that you appreciate their view and hope to make their experience better. Engaging and debating with a customer will only lead to even more hate most of the time and eventually a bad reputation. Debating poetics or any other issue on social media is also a black hole that could ruin your reputation, so keep things basic online and everyone wins.