How’s Your Reputation?

September 26, 2011

The Age of the Internet is an interesting thing. Never before has so much information about so many things been so readily available to us. In a statistic from a few years back ago, we were told that we now have more information available to us in one day than people 100 years ago had in their entire lifetime. That’s a pretty fantastic statement, don’t you think?

With so much information out there, it’s more and more important that companies are paying attention to what’s out there about them. The reality is, not only the information that your company puts out about itself is getting to your customers or potential customers. Whether through an online review, a survey, a mention in a blog post, or a check in on a social network, chances are if you do a search online for your company or organization you’re going to get more than just your website or Facebook page.

Consumers are smarter than ever, thanks to the internet. Websites like Yelp, for example, have enabled people to write and read reviews for the businesses they choose to spend their money with. Today’s comparison shopping is more apt to take place in the comfort of your own home, in front of your laptop than it is to be out going into different stores. If your customers are doing searches and looking for your company, chances are they’re finding you – the good, the bad, and the ugly. The question is, do you know what they’re going to find?

Companies talk a lot about handling PR nightmares – how it should be done, who should do it, what tools and skills are necessary, etc. Our position is a little simpler – deal with these things before they become nightmares. Monitor your online reputation. Know what’s being said about you and your company. Ensure that you’re a part of the conversation that exists about your brand/company. It’s much easier to deal with a question or complaint than it is a viral spoof of your ad campaign because it struck a wrong chord with your customers. It might take a little more work and a lot more patience, but there are simply some bells that cannot be un-rung.

Does your company or organization monitor its online reputation? Is your finger on the true pulse of what’s going on? What tools or measures do you use? We’d love to hear your thoughts!

 

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