Found a post about the necessary steps to become a strong brand and decided to add to it for a better understanding. I hope you learn something new for yourself or validate the experiences you’ve already had.
Jeff Bezos: “Your brand is what other people say about you when you’re not in the room”.
Become well respected strong brand
Use Search Engine Optimization (SEO) – SEO is the process of creating and promoting information online about your business so that positive or neutral results show up when you search for your business name or variations of it. SEO is much easier if you are proactive and are there first, rather than reacting when something negative comes up in the search engines.
SEO can be a very complicated process, but there are a few things you can do on your own. Make sure there are plenty of links that contain your brand name and variations of it (e.g., your brand name and product name). Create social media profiles, such as Twitter and Facebook. Even if you’re not an active member, you can link to your website there and write a description of your business, using keywords to describe exactly what you do.
Promote the positive to supplant the negative – Search for variations of your business name on the major search engines. Find links to stories that are helpful or speak well of your business. Link to these stories on your website, on your blog, on other websites, or in press releases. I won’t be able to go into more detail about this in this article. You may need the help of an SEO company or reputation management firm.
Document offensive content and look for clues to identify the culprit – Keep all emails or URLs with offensive or defamatory content about your business. If they are on another site, report them to the site owner. Some sites have policies and will flag or verify the content, may monitor and remove it, and punish or block the person who posted it. Check email for addresses or details that can identify the person trying to harm or destroy your business.
Avoid overreacting online – respond, but wait before responding quickly. If you are responding to negative comments, remain neutral; the key here is to react, not respond. Don’t get into a war. Ask for contact information and offer to address complaints. Remember that responding is positive and will likely benefit you in the long run, while responding negatively will only perpetuate the problem and may reinforce the negative attacks.
Consider litigation – Some companies choose to sue sites that post negative reviews. Since this can be a costly and time-consuming process, make sure you exhaust all other options first. This should be your last line of defense against an online smear campaign.
Building and maintaining trust in your business can protect you from online smear campaigns.
Be radically transparent
Amid global pandemic and public outrage, the Edelman Trust Barometer 2020 shows that brand trust has never been more important to consumers:
- 53% say brand trust is second only to price.
- 70% say brand trust is more important today than in the past.
- 81% believe personal vulnerability (health, financial stability and privacy) is the reason brand trust has become more important.
- 74% believe that brand influence in the community is the reason trust in the brand has become more important.
- 46% said they trust most of the brands they buy and use-a 12% increase over last year.
Share the good, and the bad, about your company to build trust.
Monitor what people say about your brand
You can’t protect your reputation if you don’t know what people are saying.
Campaigns can be an instant hit, but if you want to stick around long term, you have to be patient. Yes, things go viral, but they don’t stay at the top of the charts for long. If you want to thrive in the marketplace and maintain your brand, you need, first, to keep coming up with innovative content. And second, have the patience to let those ideas get results.
That’s it? Create a campaign and wait? No, it doesn’t end there. You can’t just take one step and expect it to produce results forever. You need to repeat and innovate. Come up with new ideas to present your ideology, value proposition and your brand in front of your target audience.
Constantly revising your plans. Changes in strategies. Being innovative is a must if you want to thrive in the marketplace, not just survive. Therefore, you need to constantly replenish your stock of innovative ideas to make your brand presence tangible.
React quickly and politely
A prompt “Thank for making us aware. We are working on it and will get back to you as soon as possible” is better than a late reply.
Don’t ignore criticism, responding quickly shows you care about your customer.
While you should strive to respond to as many critical social media posts as possible, you shouldn’t waste your time with obvious trolls who only make negative comments that have nothing to do with real dissatisfaction with your business.
Engaging in a war of words with trolls is a waste of time, so focus on real customers with real problems-and if you’re transparent about your core beliefs, use humor to lighten the load, and turn criticism into an asset, you’ll strengthen your credibility and enhance your branding.
Enjoy the new information and don’t be afraid to put it into practice, because this is the only way you will benefit from it.