How to Reinforce Your Online Reputation
In recent months, we talked about how to start building your online reputation. The messages you promote on social media, what people are saying about your brand on the review websites, or even if your business is almost completely absent from the online world communicates a certain message about your brand to consumers. Whatever you are doing (or not, as the case may be) in the online world has an effect on a customer’s decision making when it comes to choosing to spend their money with one business or another. If your brand’s degree of online activity is low and, as a result, you won’t necessarily appear high up in search results or be found easily on social media, you can’t expect consumers to hear about your brand, spend time engaging with it, and ultimately buy from you.
Monitor Rivals to Realise New Opportunities
Bolstering your online reputation requires a mix of careful monitoring and a smattering of creativity. Monitoring similar brands to yours will provide you with valuable insight into what they are up to online compared to you Through monitoring, you can capitalise on your rivals’ weaknesses to your advantage on social media very easily. For example, think about what your biggest rival famous for This might be the quality of its customer service, the convenience of its return policy, being a local firm and developing or manufacturing products locally, etc. Then consider how this is reflected in their online activity, and how you can outdo them, or create a unique point of difference.
Where you find that your rivals are lacking, promote how your brand excels in the same area so that consumers will find reasons to choose you over the competition. And remember, your rivals might be following the same strategy and even using your name to advertise themselves. That is why a regular and consistent monitoring is a very important task.
Encourage Happy Customers to Talk About You Online
Your online reputation will consistently improve as long as people talk about you online in a positive way, and encouraging them to do just that is in your hands. You can’t simply expect a customer to “feel like it” and share a glowing opinion about an experience with your brand with all of their friends on social media, for example. In fact, most of the consumers who do take the time to compose and publish their thoughts about a brand online do so to share a grievance or to find an answer to a problem they are having with a particular brand. Therefore, the online destinations where your brand name appears will populate with more negative comments than positive ones if you simply sit and wait for people to talk about you.
Therefore, try to encourage your customers to talk about your brand online in a positive way with creative digital marketing campaigns. Here is a campaign idea you can utilise in-store, and it consists of five easy steps:
- Start by creating a specific, personalised hashtag that is related to your brand.
- Determine what kind of offers you can provide. This can be a small percentage off a product, free gifts or gift coupons, etc.. Provide this offer to customers who visit your store while the campaign is active
- Offer your campaign for a specific period of time, to generate buzz, foot traffic, and FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) amongst your customers.
- Your campaign’s call to action will ask customers to post about your brand on their personal social media profiles by using your campaign hashtag and tagging your brand’s profile in the post. This can be on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter.
- Start sharing your campaign on social media, and promote its launch with a smattering of paid advertising. Remember, if you don’t advertise your campaign, how will people hear about it?
- This step is optional. If you have the resources, you can create printed materials on which your campaign hashtag is written, so your customers can post a picture with it.
With greater engagement with your brand on social media, your business’ ranking in search engine results will improve… Specifically, chatter about your business and people tagging, commenting or liking your
Sharing social media posts with links directed to products, blog posts, and other information on your website is very important, too. If the content is compelling enough, people will naturally visit your website, provide a boost to your website traffic, and thus your brand may receive another boost in search engine rankings.
Are You Familiar with the 20/80 Rule?
If we’re talking percentage ratios, marketing experts suggest that the content of your social media posts should only be about your brand 20% of the time, with the remaining 80% all about your customers. Being consistently active on social media channels is the first thing you need to do, but producing creative content means that you should think about why people might want to follow you on the social media in the first place. Of course, to hear the latest news and information about your brand is one of the main reasons, but if you simply bombard fans with promotional links to your products five times a, it isn’t at all compelling, and they are likely to back away.
In order to cultivate social profiles full of meaningful engagement and conversations with loyal customers,, you must also share interesting and creative content that is not directly related to your brand. For example, if you are a fashion retailer, you might share fashion tips once a every week, and conceptualise that weekly post with a special hashtag, so people come to anticipate each new post of that type, and are encouraged to engage with it. It may be that some people begin to follow you simply because of your creative output on social channels, not interested in your brand or making a purchase – well, at least not at first. Ideally, over time, subtle familiarisation with your brand will pique their curiosity, convert them into customers, and hopefully long term brand ambassadors.