Take a look at the above quote and think about it for a moment. If someone was attacking your personal reputation, how would you feel? Would you not do everything you could to combat the negative things people were saying about you? It’s the same thing for businesses – they need to be able to defend themselves online, as one bad review or comment can damage a brand to the point where it cannot recover.
There was an old saying from Warren Buffet: “it takes 20 years to build up a positive reputation and only 5 minutes to ruin it”. However in today’s fast-paced environment, with social media keeping us all abreast of the latest developments, it really only takes one blog post, one tweet, one Facebook comment to cause irrevocable damage.
A company’s brand or reputation is built upon promises they’ve made – they will deliver the products they sell on time, they will offer their services in the highest quality way, and they will live up to their mission, vision, and values that they’ve presented to their customers and clients alike. This reputation is what is also vital to other stakeholders – such as shareholders and employees.
Companies should keep these three concepts in mind:
- Create shareable content – there are multiple social media platforms out there, and companies need to be doing all they can to create and share their own content. One caveat to keep in mind is that if you are going to be on a specific channel – be all in or not at all.
- Monitor your online reputation – most large companies or organizations have people to watch what’s being said online, whether it be through reputation managers or community managers. Companies need to know what is being said about them, across various platforms, so they can effectively engage with supporters and detractors alike.
- Stay true to your values – have a clearly defined mission statement, vision, and set of values that your company has decided to uphold. And then follow through on those ideals. That is what brought stakeholders to your company in the first place, and what will keep them coming back.
Have you ever had something negative show up online about you? What did you do to combat that? Do you think that it’s a good to try to combat negative comments or just leave it alone? Comment below with your thoughts!
For further information, feel free to check out the following links:
Deloitte Study on Reputation
Leadership Review – How to Defend Your Company
Social Media Examiner – How to Defend Your Social Media Reputation
Hey Dani, you are so right. Companies need to do their homework, and know everything that is being said about them using social media tools such as socialmention.com as well as tracking the social media channels. That will help to foresee crisis as well as to identify opportunities to grow, filling the gap in the market they operate.
The most important thing to have in mind is the customer, especially in a crisis situation when companies have the tendency to put themselves in the center, and sometimes forget they need to diminish anxiety and the society’s fear by giving them some satisfaction and a realistic solution (with a deadline to happen).
Therefore, instead of hiding or attacking the media when facing a crisis, the best to do is be transparent, and use the traditional and social media in your favor to present the solution to your customers and stakeholders. My advice: go prepared for interviews, having your key messages in your heart, and the clean conscience of who is aware of doing the right things to make the things right.
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