When it comes to conversions and your company’s success, it all depends on how your customers view your brand. While you may provide a great product or service, your company reputation can significantly impact your business’s performance despite what you have to offer.
In order to increase your sales and overall customer satisfaction, you must dedicate your efforts toward your brand reputation. The goal is for your audience to see your business in a positive light, because if they didn’t—why would they buy from you?
It’s pretty simple. If people like your brand, there’s a better chance they will buy from you.
We’ll discuss how to create a reputation strategy, and what to do when you encounter the inevitable highs and lows. Not only will we provide what goes into the reputation of a company, but we’ll also disclose what you can do to optimize your reviews in your marketing strategy.
The first step to creating a good business reputation is coming up with a reputation strategy (because when it comes to business—everything has a strategy). But this will be very helpful to your brand if you have a strategy set in place to achieve a positive reputation.
Here are three examples of what goes into the reputation of a company and how to include them in your reputation strategy:
Your reputation strategy should implement marketing standards so that all of your digital content aligns with your brand’s mission. Whether it’s your email content or your company blog, you want all of your content to match who you are.
Now, this pertains to a number of different areas, including your social media accounts, your website, and even your email campaigns. Everything you put out there contributes to how your audience views your brand.
Whenever you post on Facebook, share a new blog or send out an email, it’s another opportunity for you to show who you are. If your content is inconsistent, it will be hard for your audience to formulate their own perception. While this doesn’t result in a negative brand reputation, it also doesn’t provide a positive one.
So, remember, a non-existent reputation and a bad reputation can be one and the same.
Bottom line, you won’t be able to earn a reputation in general unless your brand has a distinct identity. The goal is to market your company consistently, and in a positive light so that your audience knows who you are.
Another thing to include in your reputation strategy is to interact with your audience online. While you’re putting out consistent content, responding to comments and reviews will help you build closer relationships with your users.
Let’s say you post a new blog on your website and you receive a lot of questions in the comment section. Maybe something wasn’t quite clear in your post, or some of your readers were just not as informed as you assumed. Responding to these comments and addressing their concerns will help build a positive company reputation.
Apply this idea to all aspects of your marketing efforts, and use digital engagement to your advantage. Respond to emails, comments on social media, and customer reviews. Prospects respond well to companies who pay attention to their customers—so start engaging sooner rather than later.
Plus, you’ll get great feedback on a lot of your marketing and overall business decisions. Engaging with your audience allows you to get information from the source, and all of that information is right at your fingertips.
Try a couple of these different techniques to engage with your audience:
Ask for reviews.
Provide an incentive in exchange for a review.
Use Facebook Live and conduct a Q&A.
Your reputation strategy should include going over your comments and reviews to determine what fails and what succeeds. You’ll be able to get the general sense of how your audience is responding to your efforts by analyzing their overall response.
While this may sound like the previous sections, we are saying something different. We want you to engage with your audience and respond to the comments, but you also need to analyze what it is they are saying.
Audience feedback allows you to understand what works and doesn’t work for your audience. Whether your response is positive or negative, you can take action accordingly.
In order to build a positive company reputation, you must keep up with your evolving audience. You’ll be able to build a better reputation with your audience by really understanding what they’re saying within their comments and reviews rather than just responding.
As you’ve probably encountered, you’re going to encounter highs and lows when it comes to your business reputation. And a negative review definitely counts as a low. The last thing you want to see online is a negative review of your business. But don’t get discouraged—negative reviews are the name of the game, and everyone gets them every now and again.
But how should you handle a negative review?
It’s only human nature to want to explain why your customer is wrong and justify a situation. However, it’s extremely important that you avoid doing such actions. While consumers nowadays want you to get personal and relate to them, this is not the time or place.
When you receive a negative review, it’s imperative that you keep it friendly and professional. You want to be the company that understands where they are coming from and provide the response that answers their concerns.
Here are a couple tips to follow when you receive a negative review:
Determine if the review is justified: Before you respond to a negative review, you must filter out the ridiculous online haters. Some people post negative reviews online for no reason, and then there are those who have genuine concerns. Don’t get yourself worked up over negative reviews that were created with the intent to fire you up.
Put yourself in their shoes: For those with real concerns, put yourself in your customer’s shoes. You’ll be able to understand where they’re coming from, and that allows you to find the source of the problem. Whether it’s a misunderstanding or your company made a mistake, you’ll be able to navigate this review much easier if you see it from their side.
Don’t waste time and be sure to respond: Companies that respond to their customers in a timely manner show that they care. We could go on and on about this, but this one is pretty simple. Show your audience that you care about them by taking notice of their specific problems.
Do something: You know the saying: “Actions speak louder than words”—use that as a rule of thumb when it comes to your negative reviews. While your response to their review may be polite, taking action will prove to them that they matter. Don’t just sit back and address each review if you’re not going to take them seriously and do something about it. Your negative reviews are an opportunity to better your company.
In the end, use your negative reviews as tools rather than insults. You can use them to your advantage by understanding your business’s downfalls.
Now when you get a positive review, you’ll want to share it with the world—and you should. In order to build a positive brand reputation, you will want to share positive customer experiences to promote your successes.
While a positive review contributes to your company reputation it also benefits a lot of other things:
Brings more website traffic
Increases word-of-mouth marketing
And if you ask me, everything you’re trying to do from a digital marketing standpoint is exactly that. So, while you’re increasing all of the marketing necessities, let’s build a strong brand reputation simultaneously.
Here are some ways on how to use marketing to optimize your positive reviews:
Create an email that shows off your latest positive reviews. If you have a drip email campaign set up, you can create an email including another customer’s positive experience and send it those in your audience who are in the decision phase of the sales funnel.
Some users may still be deciding between your brand and another company, but sharing an authentic positive review through your email campaign can help push them from decision to conversion. It’s becoming more and more normal for people to read customer reviews before making a purchase, so give them the information they want.
They’ll appreciate you for it.
You can incorporate your positive reviews in a number of ways on your social media accounts. You can go through the list of all the different social platforms and come up with a way to do so, but we have one in mind that trumps them all.
Instagram—it’s a visual platform. Use Instagram to put a face to the reviewer’s name, but be sure to get their permission first. Post a picture of your “critic” and use their review and story as the caption. There are so many instances where you’re reading through reviews, and you picture who it is on the other end typing it all.
But don’t neglect your other platforms either. Be sure to include your positive reviews on your other social accounts to promote your business and your reputation.
This one is pretty simple, but very effective. Insert positive reviews sporadically throughout your website. This will give little snippets of why your prospects should trust your company. You can even create a testimonials page that lays out your positive reviews.
If people are deliberately searching for reviews online, you might as well make it easy for them and create a page that gives them what they want.
Your company reputation has a significant impact on your business success, and you don’t want to get left behind. Now is the time to take the necessary step in improving your reputation, and showing your audience that value you hold.
These tips and tricks will get you started in the right direction, but maintaining a positive reputation requires constant, diligent effort.
Every aspect of your marketing strategy can be used to benefit your brand reputation, so check out these tools necessary to get you started. What are you waiting for?