Reputation management should be one of the top priorities for your business. You should never underestimate the importance of a good reputation. Having and managing a good reputation is an area many business owners struggle with. Your organisation needs to consider your reputation as a proactive, long-term strategic asset. Think about it as the key to protecting you from crises.
A strong reputation cannot be created, it has to be earned from promises delivered. But it can be shaped and managed.
What shapes a brand reputation?
- Everything visual related to a brand (logo, name, imagery)
- Mission and vision statement
- The organisation’s internal culture
- The behaviour of the members within a business
- The success of a business
Reputation affects everything – good or bad – it comes with its consequences.
Your reputation encompasses how your stakeholders feel, think and act towards your brand and company. According to RepTrak, 80% of key stakeholders (individuals or groups that are involved in any decision or activity of an organisation) will buy, recommend, invest in and say something positive about your product/ services if you have a strong reputation. Compared to 90% of stakeholders who will not if a company has a negative reputation.
Managing your brand reputation is no longer an optional extra – it must be an integral part of your marketing strategy. You need to take your business reputation management seriously, and here’s why.
Reputation Management Informs Buyers’ Decisions
Think about a time you were searching for something to buy online. What are you basing your decision on? What made you use that specific retailer? Was it the number of positive reviews, the brand engagement on social media? Something completely different?
Now think about what would put you off using a brand. Little or no online presence, negative reviews?
Negative reviews impact not only your reputation but also your business. Critical reviews reflect poorly on your product or service quality. For instance, a survey conducted by BrightLocal found out that 98% of consumers read online reviews for local businesses. 86% of people hesitate to do business with a company if it has negative online reviews.
This means that responding to the reviews, both positive and negative, is very important. Leaving the reviews unanswered will hurt your relationship with your customers and potential customers, and your business reputation. In fact, the same survey found out that 57% of consumers say that they would be ‘not very’ or ‘not at all’ likely to use a business that doesn’t respond to reviews at all.
Reputation Management Drives Trust & Credibility
Trust is a foundation that helps an organisation succeed, take risks and rebound from mistakes.
A good reputation can help your business gain trust – a key component of your organisation’s success. When people trust your brand, they are more likely to recommend you to friends and family and repeat business with you. They might even forgive any issues or scandals that your business might have experienced. This means that an organisation with a strong reputation attracts customers. Keep them coming back and stay ahead of its competitors.
Reputation Management Increases Loyalty & Attracts New Customers
When you have gained customers, you need to work hard at keeping them. If your business has a good reputation, they are more likely to stick by you and come back to you when they need something in the future. Customers are also more likely to say good things about your business. Do not forget – word-of-mouth is a valuable marketing tool. It helps your business save a considerable amount of money on your marketing costs.
Use your brand’s social media to encourage loyal customers to engage with you and share their experiences with your business online. A brand-centric social media strategy helps to keep your business at the front of customers’ minds and shows that you understand your clientele.
Reputation Management Generates More Income for Your Business
Utilising your online reputation management strategy can set you apart from your competitors. It boosts your search engine rankings and drives more customers to your business. Brands with a favourable online reputation can also expect to see higher profits. When you attract and keep customers, it will enhance your business profitability.
Having a good reputation will help your business build a strong and loyal customer base and long-lasting relationships with your clients. Also, customers can pay more for services if a company maintains a good reputation.
Reputation Management Promotes Business Growth
A good reputation is an essential contributing factor to business growth. Many big companies thrive on a good reputation, as it quickly creates a database of loyal customers and builds strong relationships lasting for years.
Nurture Your Brand Reputation
Your organisation needs to nurture its reputation. It provides your company with trust, loyalty, sales and business growth. Maintaining a good reputation is not difficult if you know how to do it.
Here are four steps on how to maintain and manage a good reputation.
- Deliver what your company has promised to its stakeholders.
- Enhance your reputation by specific announcements or initiatives to accomplish your organisation’s goals.
- Protect your reputation by having a coherent plan when a crisis or an issue happens.
- Leverage your reputation. This includes utilising your brand’s positive reputation to achieve your business’ goals.
If your company struggles with its reputation or you are not sure how your reputation is perceived. Find out more about our Reputation Services and contact We Are Innovative to find out how we can help.