There are an increasing number of review/complaint type websites out there with high search engine rankings such as reviewcentre.com, grumbletext.co.uk and complaintsboard.com. As a result negative comment or even actual complaints placed on websites like these tend to show up very high in the Google searches for your brand, company name or even the name of your key executives.
With increased use of the internet it is highly likely that your clients and potential clients will have easy access to review other websites and they can even set up their own blog for free, and then vent their opinions, unregulated, to the world. This can be a big problem because these complaints stay on the internet forever. It is possible to start legal action to remove such comments, but it is not easy.
So what can you do to repair your online reputation if someone has said something bad about you?
Monitor – every company should set up tracking and reporting systems that will notify them each and every time that their name is used on the internet. This could include their name being mentioned in searches, blogs or forum posts, etc. Google Alerts is a free tool which will send you an email anytime Google detects something new being said about you, your brand or any other phrase that you specify.
Respond – start by taking time to monitor and gauge the reaction to any comments. Criticism of your services or products should never bring a strong response or start any heated debate. Always express concern and be helpful to try and resolve any issue raised. In other words try and turn the situation around. If done properly it is possible to turn your foe into an ambassador for your company.
Repair – you may not be able to erase what has been said about your brand and company, but you can take steps to minimise the damage caused. The objective is to push the damaging statements down in the organic search engine results and replace those with positive information and comments. The key to repairing your online reputation is to be focussed on a specific phrase such as your company name, launch a series of articles, press releases, video testimonials from satisfied clients on YouTube, blogs and even an entry on Wikipedia will all help enhance your reputation. Use the exact phrase you want in the title and the body of the text. You will be surprised just how quickly the search engines will give a good ranking to these positive articles and within a short space of time any derogatory entries in the search engine results will be pushed down from the first few pages and will have minimal impact on your business.
Please leave a comment below if you would like more information about our online reputation management services.