Five Ways to Actively Manage Your Brand Online
As a small business owner, your brand and your reputation is all you have. All the capital in the world will only succeed in helping you fail slower if you don’t actively manage your brand and your brand’s reputation. If you have a large part of your business come through the Internet, whether through advertising or online stores, how your brand affects you customers’ brains has everything to do with how well your business will fare in the long and short term. Even with help from a Denver advertising agency, you have to take an active role in managing your brand online in order to be successful.
In constructing a brand, you want to create a representation of your business that is easy to remember and causes a chain reaction of good feelings in your customers’ minds so that they associate positive and helpful products and services with your company. But you know all about that. Here are five ways you can actively manage your brand online and help your marketing agency do its job in finding you more customers:
- Regularly search for your company’s name on search engines. Google is the largest and most-used search engine by far. Its rankings and page displays are one of the reasons I have a job. An easy way to test if your search engine optimized copy is putting your brand in front of your target audience is to search for it yourself. Where are the top results when you google your company name? What are the top results? Customer complaints? Your homepage? Positive reviews? This information will help you shape your web content to bring in more traffic.
- Use social media. It’s crazy how much we have to nag our clients to get on social media and use it well. Facebook, Google+, Twitter, Instagram, etc. are perfect advertising media set up and ready to use for businesses. They are great ways to craft your message and create a brand people recognize. Find out which media work for you and use them correctly.
- Optimize your site. This should be obvious, but some small businesses miss opportunities to drive traffic to their site. You should be optimizing all of your web copy so that when people hear about your brand and google it, your homepage and your website will pop right up for them.
- Manage your personal reputation. Your personal reputation will affect your business reputation. Many large companies have specialists that help their CEOs with this with a shield of lawyers and PR workers, but you probably don’t have that luxury. Make sure that if someone searches for your name, they won’t find something embarrassing that could hurt your business.
- Handle negative content the right way. If you’re in business for long enough and you deal with customers on a regular basis, you’re going to find some negative content on the Internet, especially on sites like Yelp that allow customers to rate their experience working with your company. No matter how excellent your product or service is, and no matter how friendly your customer service representatives are, you will get a few bad reviews from time to time. The best way to handle them is to immediately respond to them online and attempt to correct the issue. This shows huge professionalism and authenticity which consumers can truly appreciate. BUT make sure you never engage in an argument since you inevitably write some harsh words that you can’t erase from the Internet. Instead, be mature. Take the opportunity to look into your products and your processes to find ways to improve. Again, no matter how good your services are, you can improve them. Are there patterns in negative customer feedback? Fix the problems and don’t feed the trolls.
Any marketing agency in Denver will tell you that managing your online reputation is crucial to boosting your business. The more you’re involved in doing this yourself, the quicker you can head off problems before they become serious issues, and the more traffic you can drive to your website.