A guide to Online Reputation Management

Online Reputation Management (ORM) is the practice of managing and influencing what information about your brand is readily available to internet users. In other words, it is a proactive measure to protect your brand. Online Reputation Management involves already having a solid and positive online presence in the first place, as well as monitoring the web for issues that may need to be addressed and restoring online reputation damage when it occurs.

In fact, according to Forbes, 97% of business owners say an online Reputation Management service is vital to their marketing strategy. As a result, it is essential that you consider taking these steps in order to present your brand in the best possible light. 

What is Online Reputation Management in digital marketing?

As of 2022, the average internet user spends more than 40 per cent of their waking life online, according to DataReportal. As a result, it is little wonder that digital information significantly impacts our perception of a brand. For this reason alone, your online reputation is one of the most critical aspects of your brand.

A negative or misrepresented online reputation is a challenge to resolve on the internet. The more negative the reputation becomes, it can be challenging to overcome alone. Experienced SEO specialists understand search engines better than anyone else and can apply their expertise to create a personalised and practical approach to restore a poor search engine reputation. 

An Online Reputation Management service can include several techniques, from focusing on SERP (search engine result page) and keyword performance to finding opportunities to improve rankings of positive content and bowl down negative search results. 

Different types of Online Reputation Management 

There are several ways your brand’s reputation can come under scrutiny from internet users. Firstly, your brand may incur a reputation attack from a journalist, blogger, consumer, or anyone seeking to damage what you are offering through unfavourable digital content. 

In fact, press releases, news stories, and media editorials have a powerful influence on consumer opinion and can serve as an originating source of a reputation problem. Without monitoring and management, online press content can negatively impact a brand. 

Monitoring and managing your social platforms is also a vital component of ensuring an entity’s positive online presence. Without consistent prosocial engagement, a social profile can become a serious reputation issue. Social media users frequent the profiles of brands they support, and the presence of user generated negative comments, unsupportive reviews and negative or inaccurate tagged articles on an inactive profile can often decrease brand loyalty and impede brand growth.

However, SEO should be the central focus of an online reputation management strategy to infiltrate the SERP with chosen media content to suppress harmful information that the business wants to remove.

The importance of Online Reputation Management

Marketing in the luxury industry requires brands to have a seriously reputable brand image with a positive web presence in Google searches. 

Organic search traffic is essential in digital marketing, taking years of time and commitment to rank this way. However, a poor online reputation can directly lose organic traffic, burying a website beneath negative content. In fact, when users spend more time seeking and sharing misleading content, the google algorithm is likely to push the negative content to the top of the SERP, becoming much harder to find positive information about your brand.

When your brand’s reputation is damaged, both brand equity and brand value are affected. Loss of brand reputation can be a competitor’s gain when consumers and other businesses opt for an alternative.

In turn, a poor online reputation can impact profitability, leading to a loss of clients, revenue, stock value and may increase expenses to resolve the crisis. 

However, there does not have to be a reputation issue for Online Reputation Management services to help your brand. Often the way your brand appears in search results may not be quite right, and you may require new branding, an informative meta description and a new page title. This is more likely to make a great first impression and encourage organic search traffic. A specialist may also create a comprehensive SEO Reputation Management plan to help dominate the SERP. 

In some cases, your brand may have a similar name to another, leading to brand confusion and even causing one reputation to affect the other. A carefully executed reputation management plan will also help differentiate your business and prevent confusion.

What does Online Reputation Management include?

The objective of Online Reputation Management is to shape and control the narrative around your brand. To do this, a specialist will undertake a comprehensive brand audit to understand your specific search landscape and the different media sources that offer opportunities to improve and better control your online reputation. This, in turn, will help to develop an online Reputation Management strategy tailored for your website and brand. 

This can also be done by developing both a short and long term plan with paid advertising, digital PR and SEO to minimise the visibility of negative press and content associated with your brand. By investing in SEO and leveraging PR, a specialist can lower the harmful content in search results while using reverse SEO methods to create positive results in SERPs.

An SEO specialist can also increase the number of positive off-page signals and improve the authority and trustworthiness associated with your domain with search engines. This can also translate into higher ranking and enhance your website’s overall domain authority and SEO optimisation. 

To shift the focus from negative news to positive news, an ORM specialist can take control of the narrative through digital PR and direct media buys. Authoritative and well-written articles will address critics, provide trustworthy information and promote positive news about the company.

Additionally, an Online Reputation Management specialist can increase your brand’s presence on all media inventory, including social media accounts, images, articles and videos.

With the size of the investment and time that goes into making a brand and website perform at its best, Relevance understands that your brand must be protected. With over a decade of online reputation management experience, our specialists can create a highly effective ORM plan that answers all your SEO challenges. If you would like to learn more about our Reputation Management service, please get in touch with Relevance today. 

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