With 49% of internet users using Google to discover new products and items, your brand’s online presence is often the first impression consumers have on who you are and what you have to offer.
This makes online reputation management an essential piece of any business’s marketing puzzle.
When negative online reviews or press drown out your positive online content, it significantly impacts your brand’s perception. It might even ruin your chances of making a new sale. Handling your online reputation professionally and strategically will benefit your business in the long run.
4 Tips For Handling Your Online Reputation
Establishing a positive online reputation is essential for leaving a great impression on current and future customers. As defined by Hubspot, online reputation management is defined as “monitoring how consumers perceive your business and taking strategic action when necessary to improve your brand’s image.” 
Here are four of the easiest ways to bolster your brand’s online notoriety:
#1: Monitor Brand Reputation
The first step in understanding your brand’s image is by paying attention to what users are already saying about you online. This gives you the opportunity to pinpoint what your brand is doing right and what areas need improvement. Monitoring the comments and anecdotes about your brand on digital spaces such as Facebook, Instagram, Yelp, or by simply searching on Google is a great place to start.
Not only this but investing in a brand monitoring tool is another excellent way to stay up-to-date on your reputation. These tools alert you when individuals mention your brand online, saving immensely on the time and energy you would have otherwise spent hunting for this information yourself.
#2: Face Negative Feedback Head-On
No matter how great your brand and product are, negative feedback is sometimes inevitable. While it might be your first instinct to ignore or delete any negative feedback that surrounds your brand, this can easily come across as deceiving. To prevent this negativity from tarnishing your brand’s online reputation, it is important to instead face these comments head-on and respond in a mature and gracious manner.
In fact, the way that you handle negative feedback online can sometimes speak louder than the comments themselves. 45% of consumers report that they would support businesses if they see them actively responding to their negative reviews.
#3: Show Audiences That You Care
Today’s consumers are much more inclined to support brands that are approachable and engaged with online audiences. Showing audiences that you care about what they have to say works wonders in online relationships and reputation building. This involves replying to comments on your social media posts and responding to both positive and negative reviews in a prompt manner.
Another great way to show audiences you care is by creating meaningful pieces of content for your audience’s consumption without asking for anything in return. This includes blogs, articles, videos, podcasts, and social media posts. If you create enough content optimized to rank highly on search engines, they can easily overpower negative press from being the first piece of content new audiences see when searching for your brand as well.
#4: Prioritize Social Proof
The majority of consumers seek social proof before making a purchasing decision. In fact, 75% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations, and over half read at least four reviews before buying a product. This makes customer testimonials, online Yelp and Google reviews, and other forms of social proof one of the most impactful elements of your brand’s online reputation.
In general, the more positive reviews online, the better your brand’s online image will be. In order to gather sufficient social proof, don’t be afraid to reach out to your existing and satisfied customers to ask for reviews or testimonials on their meaningful experiences with your product or service.
Make Handling Online Reputation Easy With Full Circle SEM
Handling your online reputation starts with establishing a solid digital marketing plan with Full Circle SEM. Our marketing professionals offer assistance in content marketing, social media marketing, and other services that make your online reputation soar. To learn more about our full range of marketing services, don’t hesitate to contact us today.