Don’t Let Online Posts Ruin Your Reputation
The Internet has changed the game when it comes to voicing your opinion. Everyone has free reign to post a complaint on a blog, forum or one of the thousands of regional and national complaint sites, and destroy your reputation. If you don’t manage your reputation online, you may wake up with a brutal comment at the top of the search results for your company.
Ever go to Yelp! and search “printers” for your city? Some printers have 10 or 20 reviews. I recently stumbled onto a white paper published by Positivesearches.com that highlights several practical ways to protect your brand and company from malicious content. Many potential customers, investors and employees will do an online background check before working with you.
A best practice is to monitor performance and constantly deliver beyond customer expectations, but things happen and there are those out there out to get you. Be prepared.
The problem with complaint sites is that complaints are never removed. Take a look at the policy of RipoffReport.com, one of the top complaint sites with more than 610,000 reports. It states, “Some people have criticized this policy as being unfair, but we strongly feel this policy is essential, fair, and far better than the alternative—rampant censorship.” The site has been sued by Fortune 500 companies in both state and federal courts and it has won 20 of 21 times.
You probably should consider another way to combat ballot stuffing or removing bogus content.
Protecting yourself involves posting positive content to drive down any negativity or garbage content when if searches for your company. Try searching your own company and see what comes up. It is amazing how many printers have a dotcom business listing on the first page search results.
Here are a few things you may want to consider to drive up positive results when people are learning about you on the Web. The goal is to have positive information in the first page search results.
• Google Alerts tells you of new results for your keywords.
• On Facebook, increase your ranking using both Fan Pages and Groups.
• Post on YouTube since video gets ranked higher for SEO.
• Twitter updates are part of Google’s real time search functionality.
• LinkedIn is great for controlling your image and mentions rank high on search engines.
• Flikr.com is a way to tap into the Yahoo community and great for images and video.
• Start a blog to drive up ranking and your voice on the Internet.
• Join Yelp! to place your own reviews and become part of the community.
• Google “Free Press Release Distribution” service is a good way to get press releases out.
• Google Maps can put you on the top of the search criteria.
• Post Job listings since they get high rankings, especially on Google searches.
You don’t need to do all of these, but most are free. Even doing a few and sticking with it will help keep positive things about your company out in front when people search for your company or printers in the area. Good luck, and hope this helps.