As a corporation, you are more widely recognized than an average small business. With this heightened brand awareness comes pros and cons – you capture a larger pool of potential customers, but you also attract prying eyes. Protecting your company’s reputation from attackers comes with the territory.
Corporate reputation management involves maintaining a positive brand perception through a robust online presence. Unlike traditional public relations (PR) efforts focused on media relations, reputation management for businesses focuses on online reviews and search engine optimization (SEO) as critical sales drivers.
In 2020, 93 percent of U.S. consumers searched online for a local business (BrightLocal). Because a simple Google search for your company or brand name can reveal much about your company, you want your business to be showcased in the best light.
With digital transformation and the recent COVID-19 pandemic pushing everyone online, maintaining a positive brand perception through online business reputation management is an indispensable part of your digital strategy.
In this blog, we discuss:
• What is corporate reputation management?
• Why you need corporate online reputation management
• Top 3 corporate reputation management best practices
• Choosing the right reputation management company
What Is Corporate Reputation Management?
You may have done a Google search for “what is corporate reputation management” before and encountered terms such as business reputation management and CEO reputation management. Let’s unpack these terms for a broader understanding of corporate reputation management.
Corporate reputation management uses online review strategies to improve your company’s image and online reputation. It is considered a specific type of business reputation management focused on corporations. Similarly, CEO reputation management deals with improving the online reputation of a company’s top leadership.
CEO reputation management services would ensure a company’s executive is portrayed fairly and positively, while corporate online reputation management would evaluate customer feedback and the perception of your corporation as a whole.
Reputation management services focus on improving your review profiles, specifically on the top review sites, including Google, Amazon, Facebook and the Better Business Bureau (BBB).
Why You Need Corporate Online Reputation Management
Having five reviews versus none makes a customer almost four times more likely to purchase from you (Spiegel Research Center). What’s more, 61 percent of marketers say a positive reputation makes customers trust you more and helps to convert passive searchers into leads (BrightLocal).
For any business, a potential increase in sales is enough reason to work with a reputation management agency. But there’s even more in store for a company with a corporate reputation management strategy. A positive reputation impacts not only your current and future customers, but also your potential employees, partners and investors.
Here are three reasons why reputation management for businesses is essential:
1. Boosts Local Search Visibility
With products and services widely available online and businesses adapting rapidly, the spotlight is on you to stay competitive among the hundreds of alternatives a consumer has from a single Google search. The recent pandemic also caused a wave of support for small businesses, making more prominent brands work harder to win and keep customers.
The good news is that business reputation management helps improve your local SEO efforts. Great reviews strengthen your Google My Business profile and increase your chances of ranking in the Google Local 3 Pack – featured search results at the top of the page. You open your business up to more customers from organic search when you improve your star rating and positive feedback online.
2. Improves Branded Search Results
When you establish a strong search position, you gain more control over what shows up on search engine results pages (SERPs). You want to ensure that your potential customers are met with great content when searching your business name online.
“Through holistic business reputation management, you keep advantageous content on the first page of the SERPs, such as your service pages or blogs,” said Tim Clarke, senior reputation manager at Rize Reviews. “It consequently pushes down any negative press that might represent you inaccurately. We would focus on removing fraudulent or unfair reviews and drowning them out with a lot of new 5-star reviews.”
3. Helps Employer Branding
Another area that corporations compete in is the ability to attract top talent and retain existing employees. Reviews provide job seekers an unfiltered look into the working environment you offer and an idea of what’s to come for existing employees.
About 50 percent of job seekers read workplace reviews on Glassdoor before applying for a job (Software Advice), and 70 percent of people consider reviews before making career decisions (Glassdoor). To complement your hiring efforts, make sure to choose a reputation management agency that handles employee reviews on job search platforms such as Glassdoor and Indeed.
Top 3 Corporate Reputation Management Best Practices
Online business reputation management is indispensable to a corporate digital strategy because it positively impacts your online presence and sales. It creates a strong foundation and maintains a positive public perception to help your business withstand challenges such as increased competition and potential PR threats. Corporate reputation management helps ensure that what your company stands for trickles down to every individual location.
“For franchises or multi-location businesses, we’re seeing that consumers are often concerned not only with the reputation of a business in their locale, but also the company’s overall reputation,” said Courtney Quigley, reputation consultant at Rize Reviews. “This is evident in how the corporate entities have paid special attention to COVID-19 efforts and employee relations – customers want to know they’re bringing their business to a company with ethical business practices and they go online to find out.”
Here are the top 3 online business reputation management best practices, according to experts:
1. Listen to Your Audience
“Through brand monitoring and social listening, you can identify trends or commonalities in your customers’ sentiments. For example, a simple but common complaint is restroom tidiness. Not paying proper attention to this could very well lead to fewer people patronizing the business and less revenue for the company,” said Quigley.
Quigley also emphasized the importance of letting customers know you are listening and seeing their concerns when they arise. “A reputation management software helps with this by alerting you of online brand mentions,” she added. “You gain the trust of your existing and potential customers when you stay on top of your feedback and act on it.”
2. Ask For Reviews
Positive online reviews are proven to help your business. The best news is that 70 percent of consumers will leave a review when asked (BrightLocal). The right review generation strategy uses a reputation management software to send your customers automated email and SMS review requests, with follow-ups at predetermined intervals.
Quigley recommended asking for reviews at your physical locations, asking for location-specific reviews and generating reviews at the corporate level. “This is all equally important to have a well-rounded online reputation for your company,” she said.
3. Respond to Reviews
Review response is just as necessary as reading your reviews and gathering feedback. About 55 percent of job seekers would abandon a job application if they read negative employee reviews online (CareerArc), but 62 percent say their perception of a company improves after seeing an employer’s responses to a review. While you can’t control the negative feedback you receive, you can certainly respond to your reviews.
In all cases, responding to your reviews gives you the opportunity to improve how your online audience perceives your company. When done right, it can even turn a negative review around. It helps showcase a human side to your business and shows your customers you care about their experiences.
Choosing the Right Reputation Management Company
A robust corporate reputation management strategy involves improving the quantity and quality of your reviews to strengthen your online presence and improve your brand perception. To reap the benefits of a positive online reputation, you need to engrain corporate reputation management into your digital strategy and stay on top of it at all times.
It’s easier and more cost-effective to maintain a positive online reputation than address reputation problems as they come. Reliable reputation management services create a robust foundation for your online reputation to make online reputation repair easier when the need arises.
The right reputation management company:
✔ Leverages technology and automation
✔ Offers worry-free and fully-managed services
✔ Consistently evaluates and improves your online reputation
Rize Reviews is a reputation management agency with the industry expertise to craft a corporate reputation management strategy entirely tailored to your needs. We offer online reputation repair and reputation management for businesses of all sizes.
Our 100 percent done-for-you reputation management services include our fully-managed reputation management software that automates your review acquisition process and sends review and non-review email and SMS campaigns according to your business needs.
Rize provided enterprise-level solutions for a Mexican food restaurant chain with 35 restaurants across 10 different states. We helped generate more than 15,000 new reviews for their multi-location restaurant in five months.
Contact Rize Reviews for a free online reputation audit and learn more about how we help grow your business through a custom corporate reputation management strategy.