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by Harry Gardiner on 21st August 2013
Hi there. Today I’m going to talk to you about managing your brand’s reputation online. Building a brand for yourself online has never been easier. Recent technology means that you now access hundreds of social profiles at just a click of a button. Social media [sites] and how we act and the things we say on them have never been more important.
It’s no good collecting together all your social media profiles and establishing a brand, though, if no one is managing the brand properly. Letting just one of your brand’s profiles fall into the wrong hands can lead to utter disarray and ruin your brand’s reputation. For example, Burger King and Jeep got their Twitter profiles hacked earlier this year. Well, this actually turned out quite well for the brand, [who] ended up with a sharp increase in followers. It doesn’t always go this well. Lots of other brands have tried to replicate the situation and staged their own Twitter hack, and it’s not turned out that great. Other brands have lost control of their Twitter profiles and received a sharp backlash from the media.
So, without further ado, here are my top tips for managing your brand’s reputation online.
Using tools like Namecheck allows you to secure your brand’s name across a wide selection of different social media profiles. It’s important to do this early on so you know that no one else is using your brand name and giving your brand a bad name by tweeting or communicating from a profile that’s associated with your brand.
You can also set up Google alerts so that you get alerts sent through to you every time your brand name or a relevant keyword is mentioned. This, obviously, works a lot better if your brand name is unique and relevant to your area of expertise, otherwise you end up getting a lot of generic content to sift through. This is great for jumping on conversations people are having about your brand and interacting with users. You can see if people are having negative conversations and try and turn their perspective around, or if you can see that they’re having positive ones, you can share their positive comments with the rest of your audience.
It’s also important to consider who’s in control of your profile. You’ve got to make sure your profile is in safe hands and that your brand is being monitored by someone who you trust. HMV, for example, let one of their ex-employees control their profile whilst mass firing. He live tweeted the event, and the backlash from the media was so severe that they’re still trying to recover.
One of the most important factors of building a brand’s reputation is tone of voice. It’s important to keep your voice clear and consistent across all social media profiles. If your brand changes its tone of voice across different profiles, it can prove confusing and off-putting to users. A lot of brands have chosen to adopt a personal, humanised approach to their tone of voice. This is all very well and good, but if you do do this, expect human reactions back. Be careful not to lose your cool or rise to any arguments. Remember that you are a professional brand still, no matter how human you may sound.
It’s also important to remember exactly who you’re talking to. Your audience is integral to building your brand. So understanding who your audience are and knowing exactly what they want is important to producing relevant and quality content. Reward those people who follow your brand, those advocates of your brand, and those ones that follow you so closely. Make sure that they get the best quality content. Don’t exclude anyone else, but make sure that you focus on the people who matter.
One of the most vital factors is managing your offline brand. It’s no good having a great online reputation if offline you’re producing poor quality products or giving horrible, shoddy service. If people are coming away from your brand with a bad taste in their mouth, then it’s not going to be great online. Word-of-mouth is still one of the biggest influences out there, so make sure that you produce the best quality products you can and give the best quality service so that people are really pleased with your brand and can go online and leave positive reviews and tell their friends positive things about your brand. That way, at least it will reflect well online and offline, and you’ll have a consistent tone of voice and brand across all platforms.
These are just a few tips for managing your brand. So feel free to let me know yours by leaving a comment below. For more information on branding and digital media, feel free to check out the social profiles at the end of this video.