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Why Preventative Reputation Marketing Should Be Considered

Why Preventative Reputation Marketing Should Be Considered
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Can I Really Prevent Rogue Customers From Saying Bad Things About Us?

“An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”–Benjamin Franklin

This timeless saying applies to many facets of life, from proper use of weapons to health and well-being, and it is especially useful for business, and your reputation. We have all seen how damaging an online attack can be for a business and a website, both financially and directly to the reputation of a business. When you are faced with unfounded accusations or cyber attacks, mounting a lawsuit or trying to combat them yourself may actually further damage your reputation. Even if you are “in the right”, you may be convicted in the court of public opinion. Preventing these attacks from happening when possible makes a great deal of sense, financially and in terms of your reputation.

Preemptive Reputation Management Strategies

Initially, you should look at how you are current portrayed online, and how your customers perceive you and your business. If you find any negative perceptions, you should deal with them immediately. Often this is very easily done, as customers appreciate businesses that actually address their concerns. When you are dealing with complaints, it’s very important that you maintain customer confidentiality at all times. Just as you don’t want your personal information to become public property, you should make sure your customer’s is protected as well.

Preventative reputation management also involves searching out all variations of your name, keeping up to date on your product perceptions, and monitoring industry websites and the social practices of employees in some cases. This may seem like an over reaction, but it isn’t. Simple spelling mistakes can lead to you inheriting someone else’s bad reputation, for instance. Disgruntled employees, former and present, may decide to smear your reputation. Monitoring your products keeps you aware of newer models, negative perceptions of products you currently carry, and potential boycotts against businesses you deal with. Following your competitors also gives you insight into general perceptions and helps to better target your business efforts. using all these information sources is an important part of fine-tuning your online reputation management campaign. This “ounce of prevention” will prove to be worth the time should you face a crisis, and will be far less expensive and time consuming than the “pound of cure”.

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