People have always had power over companies, probably now more than ever—all thanks to technology.
As much as these companies seem like Goliaths, people, as Davids, only need one tiny mishap or misjudgment to bring giants to the ground. It doesn’t even matter how long the company has been around; if you’re cancelled, you’re cancelled.
Imagine all the years of making sure your reputation is squeaky clean, only to be tarnished by the smallest mistake. To any company, this perfectly describes the worst case scenario because reputation is everything these days.
This is one of the reasons why brand reputation management has become a top priority for most companies.
And if you’re not prioritizing it, it’s about time that you do. Why? Read on.
What is Brand Reputation Management?
In its simplest form, brand reputation management (BRM) is the practice of framing how the public sees your company and making sure this matches how you want them to see it.
Now, that is a sentence definitely easier said than done.
Brand reputation is probably one of the most fragile parts of a company, ever, and it’s not going to change anytime soon. It takes years to build and maintain a good reputation, but only just a few seconds to tarnish it.
From the word management, brands go out of their way to make sure they maintain or improve whatever image they already have. This is done through constant monitoring of every interaction and mention about your brand—online and offline.
Reputation is also managed through reading customer reviews, ensuring customer satisfaction, and improving overall business.
Bottomline: brand reputation management is just simply ensuring the public is generally happy with your brand.
History and Evolution of BRM
The internet only graced the world in the year 1993 and even then, it wasn’t widely used. So, during the time before the internet became essential, brands managed their reputation through public relations.
Activities like public events, conventions, networking campaigns, and corporate social responsibility programs were utilized to make sure everybody knows how great a company is.
All of those activities were publicized through printed media and broadcasted over news channels or radio stations, making sure it was read, seen, or heard by the public.
Today, brand reputation management has mostly moved online, given that everybody already uses the internet one way or another. However, public relation activities like having customer services and events are still widely utilized.
The only difference now is that companies try to actively respond to their target audience on social media websites and make sure only the good stuff gets leaked.
Brand Reputation Management Best Practices
Times and trends may change but brand reputation management is still, at its core, customer-oriented. Hence, the best practices are all shaped around this orientation.
One of BRM’s best practices is improving customer satisfaction, which consequently improves customer experience. The happier your customers are with your company, the better their experience. And this is something they surely share with other people.
Another best practice giving exceptional customer support during times that your customers are not satisfied. Since they’ve already had a bad experience, the best you can do to mitigate the problem is to offer great customer support to mend the relationship.
Companies also practice proactively responding to negative perception, such as comments on their pages or gossip circulating around the internet. Both of these are extremely damaging, especially with the current cancel culture and trolls, and require serious damage control through constant monitoring and a prompt response.
A Solution to Common BRM Challenges
Following the best practices is easily a fool-proof method to succeed in BRM.
However, there are still some factors you can’t always control. One of which is the reputation of individuals linked to the company getting ruined. Sometimes it can be their own doing, or some foul-play is involved.
Another factor is that competitors may become deadly in battle, doing everything they can to tarnish other brands’ names. Unethical, but not uncommon.
Although these things are major threats to look out for, there’s a solution to them. That is, to hire a team of experts who can reverse any radical claim, prevent the tarnishing of your company name, and take the high road any time.
Hiring an external group might seem like unnecessary expense, but in times like these, it should definitely be considered as an investment. Think of protecting the reputation you’ve built for so long, without having to get your hands dirty.
If you have any problems with BRM, competitors, or employees, see this group as a solution to your problems.