Reputation Management?!

16 replies
Hello everyone,

Does anyone have GREAT tips for reputation management. For a company that has terrible google biz reviews, terrible yelp reviews... ouch. I've looked online.

Google biz you can reply apologizing.

Yelp.. what do you do?

Anything else?!
#management #reputation
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  • Profile picture of the author DABK
    Best way? The company stops sucking, starts being a great company and asks for review.

    Reputation management in the online contest is, usually, understood as something you do to bury one or more web pages that say negative things about you.

    Which you would do by creating new web pages with positive content (some would even create positive reviews).

    However, if you're dealing with an actively sucky company, how do you bury the bad without burying the company?
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    • Profile picture of the author rhealy29
      Originally Posted by DABK View Post

      Best way? The company stops sucking, starts being a great company and asks for review.

      Reputation management in the online contest is, usually, understood as something you do to bury one or more web pages that say negative things about you.

      Which you would do by creating new web pages with positive content (some would even create positive reviews).

      However, if you're dealing with an actively sucky company, how do you bury the bad without burying the company?

      Bingo. If the company actually sucks, then the most important thing is fixing that problem.

      If that problem has been fixed, or the company has actually been targeted through no fault of their own, the key is to drown out the bad with good. You need to find a way to start getting happy customers to take the time to get online and rave about their good experiences. This is easier said than done, but as always, the best way to motivate people is to give them something in return. A discount on a follow-on purchase might be more than enough, and also might help get you a second sale down the line.
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  • Profile picture of the author SARubin
    Originally Posted by Jenna Beas View Post

    Hello everyone,

    Does anyone have GREAT tips for reputation management. For a company that has terrible google biz reviews, terrible yelp reviews... ouch. I've looked online.

    Google biz you can reply apologizing.

    Yelp.. what do you do?

    Anything else?!
    Hey Jenna,

    Back a few years ago, I did some Reputation Management for small businesses. It was something I offered, as part of a complete package.

    I don't do it anymore (these days I stick to SalesCopy, Advertising, and Conversion Rate Optimization. Because I find it a whole lot more rewarding, and enjoyable)

    But I did find one of my old blog post / sales pages, that I'll post here. It still might have some useful insights for you?

    Note: I just spent a couple minutes trying to edit it, and strip out all the sales message from it, because I didn't think it was necessary for this post (and because I don't do that kind of work anymore). But if I left any of the sales pitch in, just try to ignore it, and focus on the other stuff that might be useful to you...



    [begin post]

    Your company's reputation can make or break your business!



    To put it simply...

    If you have a good reputation, people are more likely to trust you, and do business with you.

    If you have a poor reputation, they're going to spend their money somewhere else.


    These days, with review sites like Google reviews, Facebook, YellowPages.com, and Yelp (just to name a few); it's easier than ever for someone to write a review about your business, for all the world to see.


    What does this means for your company's reputation?



    The good -
    Simply put... Good reviews can boost your reputation; leading to more consumer trust, more customers, and ultimately more sales for your business.


    The bad -
    Online reviews are a double edged sword. Because while positive reviews can boost your reputation; negative reviews can ruin your company's reputation in the blink of an eye. Causing your sales to plummet.


    The ugly -
    Online Reviews are not always legitimate!
    Sometimes it's just a competitor, or disgruntled ex-employee who writes a bad review about you.

    Unfortunately, most potential customers don't know the difference. All they know is, you have a bad review, and it makes your company look bad.


    The bottom line is this...


    The more positive reviews you receive, the better your company looks.



    Your reputation management solution

    Of course, no one wants to worry about reputation management until there's a problem. But it's always easier to lay a strong, positive foundation, than it is to fix a bad reputation.

    Getting a head start with a positive reputation (especially online) can help over-shadow any negative reviews that may come your way.



    Here's a couple strategies for building your "positive reputation foundation":


    1) Always remember, the reputation of your company starts before a customer ever shows up:


    It starts with a customer oriented business culture.

    Simply put... A positive, friendly, customer oriented culture, shows through in every aspect of your business.

    By contrast, if you have a group of disgruntled or unhappy workers, all the employee handbooks and guidelines in the world, will never be able to keep the negative attitudes from coming through. And your customers will feel it.

    Here's something for you to think about... When a client has a positive experience with your company, even if your product or service does not perform 100%, they are far more likely to "cut you some slack."

    But if your customers are made to feel "less than important" - you can have the best products in the world and you'll still get a Luke-warm review, at best.


    Remember, customer service is not a single department within your company. For good, or bad, everyone from the owner down to the lowest employee represents the reputation of your company.

    After working with many different businesses, I've discovered that company culture (good or bad) always starts at the top. So if you're the business owner, it's up to you to create the culture you want your business to have towards your customers.



    2) Encourage positive reviews:


    Follow up with customers and ask them to leave reviews. If asking for positive feedback feels awkward to you; I promise, it's easier than you think. And I can show you a few super effective systems that make it even easier.

    But for now just keep in mind, the best time to ask for reviews is immediately after someone makes a purchase with your company.


    There's two main reasons for this...


    a) When someone has a positive experience with your company; if you wait too long to request a review, most of the excitement from their positive transaction has worn off.

    At this point many people will either ignore your request, or their review will be far less enthusiastic than it would have been. Which is still better than nothing, but not as good as it could be.



    b) If someone has a negative experience with your company, it's better to find out quick so you can try to make it right. Before they decide to vent their frustrations, all over the internet.

    A small issue can often be nipped in the bud, before it grows big in the mind of your customer, thus keeping your reputation intact.

    I've even seen many negative reviews flipped over into positive reviews, thanks to a quick customer service response.



    3)Promote your positive reviews:


    If you find positive reviews and feedback about your company on a website, blog, forum, or even in print; don't be shy about letting people know.

    Link to them from your website, or mention them on social media. Positive reviews can also be used like testimonials on your website, or in your advertisements.

    The trick is to let people know about them without sounding like your bragging. Which is fairly easy, once you know how.

    Of course, those are just a couple of "baseline" strategies for your company's reputation management. There are a few more essential strategies I can teach you; If you're interested.


    What you can do when your reputation has already been tarnished:


    Don't panic if you find some negative reviews about your business; it happens to the best of us. But how we manage it can make a big difference for your company's reputation.



    First we need to determine if the negative reviews are legitimate:


    Sometimes it's just a competitor, or disgruntled ex-employee who writes a bad review about you.

    In that case; many times we can simply report the fake review to the review sites -- most legitimate review sites are eager to remove fake feedback, because it reflects upon their own sites reputation for integrity.

    If the review site doesn't honor our request to remove the false review; then we may need to resort to more aggressive tactics, to convince them it's in their own best interest to remove the fake review.

    Some of these tactics could include legal action against the site. But it rarely ever goes that far if we can show evidence the review is not legitimate.


    What if negative reviews cannot be deleted from the review sites:


    Sometimes negative reviews (real and fake) become a permanent part of the internet. As such, they become a permanent part of your company's reputation.

    When this happens, we have a few of options...



    First - If the negative reviews are legitimate, then we may need to consider what your unhappy customers are saying. Is there something you really could do better?

    Read their opinions and consider using the feedback to improve your company's service.

    It may also be a good idea to directly reply to customers who have left a negative review.

    Sometimes, responding allows the reviewer to feel heard, and they may even revise their review and give you a higher rating.


    Of course, we need to be very careful how we word your response. Because when you get it right, it can help your reputation; but if you get it wrong, it can do more harm than good...

    "My job is to help you get it right."



    Second - We can try to get negative reviews "de-indexed" from the search engines. That way, when anyone searches for your company, the negative review won't show up in the search results.



    Third - If we can't get the bad reviews changed, deleted, or de-indexed; then we move on to "dilute and suppress" tactics.

    This basically means we dilute the negative reviews, by drip feeding positive reviews and stories about your business, to strategic websites across the internet.

    This begins to suppress negative reviews and news stories about you, away from the first few pages of search results.

    Few people ever look past the first couple pages of search results. When we flush your negative reviews to the back pages of the search engines, few people will ever see them.

    And if people do find them, the negative will be surrounded by so much positive, that the poor reviews will be rendered nearly insignificant.

    CAUTION: This third technique must be handled carefully. It requires a combination of "content curation, SEO, and strategic placement of positive reviews" for it to be effective.
    It can be a short process, or a long process, depending on how many bad stories already exist, and how intense they are.

    If you simply slam the internet with hundreds of positive reviews in a short period of time, it will look phony and could easily backfire, causing more harm than good.


    Finally: Reputation management is an on going process



    Once your company has a positive reputation, we need to make sure it stays that way.
    Which brings us full circle; back to building, and maintaining your "positive reputation foundation"



    You may never be able to stop every person from leaving negative reviews about you and your business. But with solid reputation management, we can build a more positive reputation, and make it much easier for people to choose to do business with you.

    [end post]


    Anyway, hope something in there can be of use for you.

    All the best,
    SAR
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    • Profile picture of the author kaisoft
      Originally Posted by SARubin View Post

      Hey Jenna,

      Back a few years ago, I did some Reputation Management for small businesses. It was something I offered, as part of a complete package.

      I don't do it anymore (these days I stick to SalesCopy, Advertising, and Conversion Rate Optimization. Because I find it a whole lot more rewarding, and enjoyable)

      But I did find one of my old blog post / sales pages, that I'll post here. It still might have some useful insights for you?

      Note: I just spent a couple minutes trying to edit it, and strip out all the sales message from it, because I didn't think it was necessary for this post (and because I don't do that kind of work anymore). But if I left any of the sales pitch in, just try to ignore it, and focus on the other stuff that might be useful to you...



      [begin post]

      Your company's reputation can make or break your business!



      To put it simply...

      If you have a good reputation, people are more likely to trust you, and do business with you.

      If you have a poor reputation, they're going to spend their money somewhere else.


      These days, with review sites like Google reviews, Facebook, YellowPages.com, and Yelp (just to name a few); it's easier than ever for someone to write a review about your business, for all the world to see.


      What does this means for your company's reputation?



      The good -
      Simply put... Good reviews can boost your reputation; leading to more consumer trust, more customers, and ultimately more sales for your business.


      The bad -
      Online reviews are a double edged sword. Because while positive reviews can boost your reputation; negative reviews can ruin your company's reputation in the blink of an eye. Causing your sales to plummet.


      The ugly -
      Online Reviews are not always legitimate!
      Sometimes it's just a competitor, or disgruntled ex-employee who writes a bad review about you.

      Unfortunately, most potential customers don't know the difference. All they know is, you have a bad review, and it makes your company look bad.


      The bottom line is this...


      The more positive reviews you receive, the better your company looks.



      Your reputation management solution

      Of course, no one wants to worry about reputation management until there's a problem. But it's always easier to lay a strong, positive foundation, than it is to fix a bad reputation.

      Getting a head start with a positive reputation (especially online) can help over-shadow any negative reviews that may come your way.



      Here's a couple strategies for building your "positive reputation foundation":


      1) Always remember, the reputation of your company starts before a customer ever shows up:


      It starts with a customer oriented business culture.

      Simply put... A positive, friendly, customer oriented culture, shows through in every aspect of your business.

      By contrast, if you have a group of disgruntled or unhappy workers, all the employee handbooks and guidelines in the world, will never be able to keep the negative attitudes from coming through. And your customers will feel it.

      Here's something for you to think about... When a client has a positive experience with your company, even if your product or service does not perform 100%, they are far more likely to "cut you some slack."

      But if your customers are made to feel "less than important" - you can have the best products in the world and you'll still get a Luke-warm review, at best.


      Remember, customer service is not a single department within your company. For good, or bad, everyone from the owner down to the lowest employee represents the reputation of your company.

      After working with many different businesses, I've discovered that company culture (good or bad) always starts at the top. So if you're the business owner, it's up to you to create the culture you want your business to have towards your customers.



      2) Encourage positive reviews:


      Follow up with customers and ask them to leave reviews. If asking for positive feedback feels awkward to you; I promise, it's easier than you think. And I can show you a few super effective systems that make it even easier.

      But for now just keep in mind, the best time to ask for reviews is immediately after someone makes a purchase with your company.


      There's two main reasons for this...


      a) When someone has a positive experience with your company; if you wait too long to request a review, most of the excitement from their positive transaction has worn off.

      At this point many people will either ignore your request, or their review will be far less enthusiastic than it would have been. Which is still better than nothing, but not as good as it could be.



      b) If someone has a negative experience with your company, it's better to find out quick so you can try to make it right. Before they decide to vent their frustrations, all over the internet.

      A small issue can often be nipped in the bud, before it grows big in the mind of your customer, thus keeping your reputation intact.

      I've even seen many negative reviews flipped over into positive reviews, thanks to a quick customer service response.



      3)Promote your positive reviews:


      If you find positive reviews and feedback about your company on a website, blog, forum, or even in print; don't be shy about letting people know.

      Link to them from your website, or mention them on social media. Positive reviews can also be used like testimonials on your website, or in your advertisements.

      The trick is to let people know about them without sounding like your bragging. Which is fairly easy, once you know how.

      Of course, those are just a couple of "baseline" strategies for your company's reputation management. There are a few more essential strategies I can teach you; If you're interested.


      What you can do when your reputation has already been tarnished:


      Don't panic if you find some negative reviews about your business; it happens to the best of us. But how we manage it can make a big difference for your company's reputation.



      First we need to determine if the negative reviews are legitimate:


      Sometimes it's just a competitor, or disgruntled ex-employee who writes a bad review about you.

      In that case; many times we can simply report the fake review to the review sites -- most legitimate review sites are eager to remove fake feedback, because it reflects upon their own sites reputation for integrity.

      If the review site doesn't honor our request to remove the false review; then we may need to resort to more aggressive tactics, to convince them it's in their own best interest to remove the fake review.

      Some of these tactics could include legal action against the site. But it rarely ever goes that far if we can show evidence the review is not legitimate.


      What if negative reviews cannot be deleted from the review sites:


      Sometimes negative reviews (real and fake) become a permanent part of the internet. As such, they become a permanent part of your company's reputation.

      When this happens, we have a few of options...



      First - If the negative reviews are legitimate, then we may need to consider what your unhappy customers are saying. Is there something you really could do better?

      Read their opinions and consider using the feedback to improve your company's service.

      It may also be a good idea to directly reply to customers who have left a negative review.

      Sometimes, responding allows the reviewer to feel heard, and they may even revise their review and give you a higher rating.


      Of course, we need to be very careful how we word your response. Because when you get it right, it can help your reputation; but if you get it wrong, it can do more harm than good...

      "My job is to help you get it right."



      Second - We can try to get negative reviews "de-indexed" from the search engines. That way, when anyone searches for your company, the negative review won't show up in the search results.



      Third - If we can't get the bad reviews changed, deleted, or de-indexed; then we move on to "dilute and suppress" tactics.

      This basically means we dilute the negative reviews, by drip feeding positive reviews and stories about your business, to strategic websites across the internet.

      This begins to suppress negative reviews and news stories about you, away from the first few pages of search results.

      Few people ever look past the first couple pages of search results. When we flush your negative reviews to the back pages of the search engines, few people will ever see them.

      And if people do find them, the negative will be surrounded by so much positive, that the poor reviews will be rendered nearly insignificant.

      CAUTION: This third technique must be handled carefully. It requires a combination of "content curation, SEO, and strategic placement of positive reviews" for it to be effective.
      It can be a short process, or a long process, depending on how many bad stories already exist, and how intense they are.

      If you simply slam the internet with hundreds of positive reviews in a short period of time, it will look phony and could easily backfire, causing more harm than good.


      Finally: Reputation management is an on going process



      Once your company has a positive reputation, we need to make sure it stays that way.
      Which brings us full circle; back to building, and maintaining your "positive reputation foundation"



      You may never be able to stop every person from leaving negative reviews about you and your business. But with solid reputation management, we can build a more positive reputation, and make it much easier for people to choose to do business with you.

      [end post]


      Anyway, hope something in there can be of use for you.

      All the best,
      SAR
      Great Post Thanks
      I got great value from it
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[11299832].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Steven Henry01
    If you have a good reputation now and so you have to need to be loyal to the users, who are getting services from your side. Ask the user to remove the bad reviews and create new genuine some good reviews on it. It will surely help you to improve reputation online or remove the old posts on yelp etc. and if on the other website, request the webmaster to remove or create the new post on it. But you have the need to loyal to the users otherwise it will not work.
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  • Profile picture of the author DURABLEOILCOM
    Offer some type of coupon/freebie incentive for positive reviews.
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    • Profile picture of the author MikeFriedman
      Originally Posted by DURABLEOILCOM View Post

      Offer some type of coupon/freebie incentive for positive reviews.
      No. Do not do this. That is against Yelp's and Google's ToS.
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  • Profile picture of the author jacksonsophia086
    Your online reputation mostly depends on your reviews mostly
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  • Profile picture of the author MikeFriedman
    Originally Posted by Jenna Beas View Post

    Hello everyone,

    Does anyone have GREAT tips for reputation management. For a company that has terrible google biz reviews, terrible yelp reviews... ouch. I've looked online.

    Google biz you can reply apologizing.

    Yelp.. what do you do?

    Anything else?!
    You need a two-pronged approach to fix this. First, the business needs to identify why they are getting bad reviews and then take the appropriate steps to fix these problems. That might be firing an individual who is causing problems. It might be a problem with followup that needs to be addressed. It might be that the staff needs better training on topics relating to what the business does and offers or better communication and customer service skills.

    Whatever is causing customers to be displeased with their experience needs to be fixed first.

    Second, they company needs to develop a way to possibly intercept bad reviews before they ever get posted to Yelp or Google. The best way to do this is to direct people to a separate website or page on the existing site where people can leave a review. When someone is unhappy, they generally just want to bitch and they want to be heard. If you direct them to a place where they can leave their review and assure them that management reads those reviews, many times they will be satisfied just posting there.

    If they leave a good review, they should be encouraged to also post reviews on Yelp, Google, Facebook, etc. If they leave a bad review, they should get a message that a manager or owner will follow up with them within 24 hours to discuss their experience (and make sure someone actually follows up).

    If you can intercept bad reviews like this, and maybe even turn that customer's experience into something more positive, you can start to turn around the online reviews appearing on sites like Yelp and Google.

    Again, the most important step though is to fix whatever the issue is.
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  • Profile picture of the author uncia
    Create a bunch of social media pages - YouTube, Quora, Reddit, Twitter - become active on forums, posting relevant, useful content. Eventually this content will be indexed in search engines and will be on the first page for your business name.
    Signature
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    • Profile picture of the author MikeFriedman
      Originally Posted by uncia View Post

      Create a bunch of social media pages - YouTube, Quora, Reddit, Twitter - become active on forums, posting relevant, useful content. Eventually this content will be indexed in search engines and will be on the first page for your business name.
      That does nothing to help a business showing it has been rated 2 out of 5 stars by customers in Google and Yelp.
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  • Profile picture of the author DABK
    Mike is right. But Mike assumes the fault for the bad reputation is some employee... Which is often the case. Sometimes, though, it's the owner/management. Sometimes, they are not willing to change. Sometimes, they ask you to invent stuff about them... Sometimes, they are willing to change whatever got them the bad reputation with their clients but not vendors... I am saying, sometimes, it's best to stay away from people with bad reputations. I am saying, proceed with caution. If you do proceed, heed Mike and SAR's advice, ignore the 'create youtube, quora, etc.' crowd's advice.
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  • Profile picture of the author katejohnsons
    Why you do not hire any reputation management consultant. I am sure, he will help out from this issue. Otherwise, you can also try online tutorials for getting help.
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  • Profile picture of the author Randall Magwood
    You gotta drown them bad reviews with tons of good reviews. If you hire a reputation management services.... all they're going to do is bury all the bad/sketchy reviews with web pages and sites that say you're excellent, great, etc.
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  • Profile picture of the author mssupport800
    If you are the part of Online Reputation Management then you must have network of ORM team because if you have got multiple positive review then you must down the negative review.
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  • Profile picture of the author ctrlaltdelete
    Honestly? The company needs to step up and improve. I've seen instances where a business with a bad rep hires someone from the outside to help with customer support and social media. For a while it seems like things were going well, but the bad reviews still prevail in the end. You can't mask bad services and products for too long, especially in times like this when it's so easy for word to spread online.

    How well the business treats customers in "real life" (with good customer service/products, employee training, etc) should reflect how well the business treats people online (responding to comments, reviews, PR, etc.). Don't stop at replying to a review with a "We're very sorry, we'll look into the incident, etc etc" but act on your promise. Do something to improve the situation.
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