What matters more to a company than keeping the cash flowing is keeping the consumers happy. Customers are supposed to be the center of any organization dealing in products and services. They are the pillars that keep the roof over the heads of business owners. While there are a lot of businesses out there that exist just to make money by confusing their customers, such a business cannot survive for long. Bread can’t be baked with foul dough, and brands cannot stay afloat with a bad reputation.
What makes a brand’s reputation important?
The reputation of a business is what brings in revenue. If a customer is not satisfied or happy with the first experience they have with your business, they will not only say goodbye but will also suggest to their acquaintances and people they meet to avoid you. Brand reputation thus plays an important role and requires excellent management to set an example.
In the internet world, where everyone gets a voice, whether you have a review page or not, it is important to check on the consumers who have left your business premises with a sour taste. Social media is now the biggest platform where customers can raise their concerns and display satisfaction in direct reference to a brand. This makes most consumers go to companies whose reputation management is good.
Companies with good reputation management have certain values that set them apart for 86% more customers. They constantly keep in touch with the needs of the consumer, they always allow space for the consumer to raise concerns, they have a response team for all consumer concerns, and most of all, they are prompt at resolving customer issues. Thus, online reputation management (ORM) is important for every brand. Here are a few insights on what good reputation management is and some successful online reputation management examples.
What is online reputation management?
Online reputation management (ORM) is a process that involves the use of social media monitoring, online platform reviews, media, news articles, or any online content that refers to the reputation of the company.
The concerns raised using these channels are reviewed by the company to create a prompt response to the netizens through direct messaging, commenting on social media, replying to product reviews, or creating a public declaration through ad campaigns or publicity acts. An ORM program is developed to avert reputation crises for brands and resolve customer concerns. Sometimes it is also used to defend against false or confusing allegations against the brand coming from an unreasonable customer.
The main benefits of online reputation management are:
- Keeping untrustworthy rumors away from the brand image
- Keeping the market credibility of a company unharmed
- Pacifying a number of complaining customers without bursting out the entire ordeal
- Increasing audience engagement by handling acts of deliberate defamation
- Boosting sales by improving customer experience through a prompt resolution of issues
What are the best examples of online reputation management?
While reputation management requires wit and promptness, you can always learn a thing or two from companies that have good online and social media reputation management and have set examples. Here are a few examples of companies with a good reputation:
There is a reason why Nike sneakers are drooled over by a lot of sneakerheads. It is not the star endorsements or mentions in musical videos. It is the customer satisfaction and experience that the company provides. With the current focus of all companies on pushing more and more ad campaigns and social media posts, it is easy to lose focus on the customer satisfaction factor.
So Nike decided that it had to give a separate and louder voice to its customers. It thus decided to create a separate social media handle for its customer support, established a response team, and allowed customers to reach out to them directly through the Twitter handle @TeamNike. This allowed them to answer customer queries in real-time while resolving issues faster.
Industries dealing with travelers always have a high number of grievances. In that case, one of the most popular is the airline. Any traveler who has been hit with a delayed or canceled notification by their airline is certain to be furious. The number of people that an airline handles each day leaves less space for complaints from a few people who have a complaint about how they had to wait.
Almost every third airline out there wants its passengers to adjust to their norms without any personal apology or consolation. JetBlue, however, made a turnaround in that area. When a customer raises a complaint on their social media handles, JetBlue is quick to respond with a reply asking for details of the flight personally and looking further into the issue. It doesn’t just solve the flyer’s issue but also sets an example of how airlines should help travelers. Making a lot of flyers return to buy their tickets.
Starbucks is one of the best examples of brand reputation management. It safeguards its reputation on the spot and urges the customer to come back for more of its tasty beverages. A similar high standard of remuneration is maintained by Starbucks, which it expects from its customers. If a customer complains about a late response or serving time, it automatically provides them with a free drink voucher, which they can use on their next visit. This brings a smile to the client’s face, and they have no reason not to come back to get another brew.
The other side of things
Even though there are many examples of how companies have helped their customers, there are some that have been on the notorious side of things. These bad customer experiences are also worth learning from. For example, United Airlines’ case of pulling out a reputed doctor and dragging him out of the flight in an unconscious and bleeding condition, cost the airline more than a billion dollars in value.
After the matter exploded, the company made excuses instead of apologies as to why the airline’s workers operated in that manner. Similarly, when Nestle was accused of illegally sourcing palm oil from heinously regulated labor, they went on to delete already viral comments on their social media and started to reply with sarcastic comments. There is certainly no coming back from a PR crisis of such magnitude.
However, every business must be ready for action when faced with backlash or positive feedback and be apologetic or grateful in real time. This requires a lot of data processing, for which social media listening programs or natural language processing can be used. Ensure a reputed and valued future for your business with online reputation management programs.
Online reputation management is an absolute necessity if we want to take control of the conversation our business has with customers. With a good system in place, it can be easier to respond quickly and authentically to customer feedback online. Moreover, monitoring the conversations happening around our product or service allows us to stay ahead of any potential PR crisis that may arise. So make sure to invest in the right system to protect and build our brand.