You can change your reputation over time. Just like reputations can be tarnished, they can also be repaired so that you can reap the benefits of having a positive online reputation. It's important, and it's worth the time to keep it in the best possible shape. There are countless benefits to maintaining yours, but here are the ones we find most important.
Now that we've provided a basic overview of our top benefit to a good reputation, let's dive into the details.
Brands with a good online reputation are trusted more because people depend on the opinions of others. If people appear to trust a company or person, others are likely to follow suit with the same sentiment. If you can't even get people to trust your brand, you're going to have a difficult time selling your products. In fact, research shows that 83% of people trust brand recommendations from friends, and nearly 70% trust consumer opinions more than paid advertisements.
One way reputation management services help build trust is to make your business more transparent in all the right places. By listening to customers online and responding to comments (both good and bad), you are showing people that your business listens to queries and responses. Even something as simple as replying to a comment on Instagram can improve your reputation and build trust with customers.
It's also paramount to have a good review management strategy. Since most people trust the opinions of people overpaid advertisements, your online reviews need to be the best they can possibly be. A 2018 study found that 91% of people trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. And if 83% of people trust brand recommendations from friends, then you get the picture.
Building on the importance of your online reviews, companies with good online reviews tend to attract more business. Now it's more important than ever before to have lots of new, relevant reviews for your business online. In fact, every additional one-star Yelp rating causes an increase in the business’s revenue as high as 9%, according to a Harvard Business School Working Paper. The benefits of online reputation management can translate into extra income for growth.
Reviews are equally as important for attracting employees as they are for attracting customers. So much so that only 1 in 5 job seekers would consider working for a company with a 1-star rating! People want to work at a good company that is "going places." They want to work at a company that shares the same core values and beliefs as them, one that they can trust. And they trust the opinions of current and past employees. Along with workplace reviews, positive content online shows that your company has a favorable culture. Companies with better reputations tend to attract more, and therefore better, talent.
Companies with bad online reputations tend to earn worse reputations. This may be because of systemic problems within the company, but it may also be the reputation management version of the "broken window theory." The theory states (basically) that a warehouse with broken windows tends to attract more vandals. Improving a tarnished reputation may sound like a daunting task, but there are steps that can save a damaged reputation and reduce reputation risk down the road.
In today’s highly competitive business environment, the way people perceive a brand has a direct impact on its sales and revenue numbers. In fact, companies with a good reputation can spend less on marketing and advertising than other firms.
The rise of social media and the shift from conventional advertising means businesses need to actively engage consumers and focus on building a strong online reputation.
Reputation management on the web is not just about countering negative content and generating positive reviews. It’s about building a reputation that makes a brand synonymous with its core values and the primary needs of its target market. This is precisely why businesses need to have a comprehensive online reputation management strategy in place.
A solid reputation has several direct and indirect benefits for a business.
To further clarify any doubts about the importance of having a strong online reputation, take a look at these eye-opening stats.
All the above statistics point in one direction — online reputation management is the future of marketing and branding.
When it comes to reputation management on the web, Google’s first page is the new business card. Most people never make it past the first page. Customers and prospects judge brands based on what Google’s search results say about them.
In fact, a recent study showed that more than 45% of consumers discovered information via a Google search that changed their minds about doing business with a company.
It is, therefore, crucial for every business to have an online reputation management strategy that highlights its strengths and makes it look good on Google’s first page.
Companies with effective reputation management strategies can expect to reap the benefits of their efforts. These benefits include higher trust, better talent, less risk, and more profit. For more information on how you can improve your reputation management strategy, contact us today.