Running your own business is exhilarating, fun, stressful and sometimes soul-crushing. Any entrepreneur will tell you that their journey has been like a rollercoaster. But, no matter where you’re at right now, there’s a situation we should all prepare for. How do you protect your business’s reputation against bad press or negative reviews?

How do you protect your business's reputation? |

We all hope that the relationships we build with our customers will remain positive and allow our businesses to thrive. Unfortunately, that’s not always how it goes – an important part of your digital marketing strategy should be reputation management.

Know What is Being Said

If you’re going to effectively manage your business’s reputation, you need to know what it being said about you – both good and bad. You should monitor this on a regular basis, remembering to check social media. Of course, it’s impossible to check every single website for mentions of your business, but there is a tool you can use to help.

Google Alerts will let you know when your name or URL appear anywhere on the web. Just type in your keyword and set up the email alert. This way, you’ll be one of the first to know when something is said about your business.

Promote Your Positives

We can’t please everyone – at some point, everyone will receive negative comments. Your aim is to combat negative publicity with positive. Aim to post positive information fast and frequently.

If you launch a new product or service, let your community know. When you win awards, share them. If you make a charitable donation, let people know why you’ve chosen this particular charity. You can share these wins on your own website and on social media to portray a positive image of your business.

Just make sure the information you post is true.

Handling Negative Comments

No matter how hard you work to portray a positive image of your business, negative comments are almost inevitable. The way you respond to and handle them will massively impact your business’s reputation. So, how do we do it?

  1. Never argue – this will only reflect badly on you and your business
  2. Address your shortcomings directly – own up to your mistakes and let people know how you intend to correct them and improve your overall customer experience
  3. Prioritise customer service – always put the customer first and work with them to reach a satisfactory resolution

Boss ladies, I wish you nothing but success and positive publicity! However, if you do experience negativity in your business, I hope these pointers will help you.