Updated: Nov 27, 2019
Reputation. No, we’re not referring to Taylor Swift’s 2017 album (how good was it though?). No, are you ready for it? We’re talking about your brand’s reputation. How to build, improve and manage it. It’s a delicate process. One wrong move and it could mean end game. But that’s a little dire. We don’t want to go freaking you out. We just want to see how many Taylor Swift references we can squeeze into this blog. Are you keeping count? We’ve got three so far.
The basic premise is simple. Great reputations are built on three things; trust, transparency and communication. Think about the brands you love. Do they tick all those boxes? We’re sure they do. Because those three things form the foundation of every healthy relationship. Think about your strongest personal relationships. Maybe it’s with your partner, mother, father, best friend or siblings? Is there trust? Is there communication? You’ve known how to manage reputation your entire life. Just because your brand isn’t a person doesn’t mean the same rules don’t apply.
Are you religious?
Religiously addicted to your business. Ha! We know you are. What we’re trying to say is that having your own brand bible is super useful for managing your online brand reputation. Specifically, your brand bible should contain information on what your brand voice sounds like, what your values are and what your mission is. This is important to remember for when you are communicating with your stakeholders, your fans, all the other people in your business, so when you do, you do so with one consistent voice.
Let’s get social
Ah social media, seriously what were we doing before it came along? Social media is such a powerful tool for building, improving and maintaining brand reputation. Let’s break it down.
How social media can help build brand reputation
Use social media to leverage your brand reputation by providing value to your consumers outside of just your product or service. A prime example, us – Crowned PR. We claim we’re brand experts but just because you say something doesn’t make it so. Actions speak louder than words. How do we prove we’re brand experts? By posting content of value (like this blog) by providing real customer testimonials and by being featured by other relevant trustworthy sources. There’s a lot of other ways you can utilise social media to help build your brand reputation, but you get the picture. Don’t just say, do.
How social media can help improve brand reputation
Social media communities are powerful AF. Think about your favourite Facebook groups. Put people that are all passionate about the same thing together in a room and they’re just going to talk it up, up, UP. A great example? Gorman Outfit of the Day. A group of nearly 8000 members, Gorman Outfit of the Day is literally exactly what it sounds like. Women post pictures of their outfit and other women comment and tell them how damn fabulous they look. Taylor would definitely approve of this type of positivity towards others. The thing is, Gorman (brand) didn’t create this group. But they should have. It not only gives you non stop user generated content but the ability to create conversations and involve customers in the future of your brand.
How social media can help maintain brand reputation
Time to get your lurk on. Social media monitoring is a massive part of maintaining your brand reputation online. Except you don’t want to just stay silent. Remember when we said that one of the key elements in a healthy relationship was communication. You want to be doing that. It’s important to remember that while you may have built your brand on certain values and ideals with time they may need to change. An example of this? Action on climate change. Consumers care about plastic packaging and waste. And they’re vocal about it. Qantas recently pledged to cut down on plastic waste by 75% over the next two years, something I’m sure the original movers and shakers at Qantas never gave much thought to. Because times change and you should be changing with it.
Responding to reviews
Reviews matter. Majority of consumers will look at reviews before committing to a purchase. Therefore, it’s important that you respond to your reviews whether good or bad appropriately and within an acceptable time frame. Everybody loves hearing the good. But responding to negativity can be tricky. Our advice? Write your response, walk away and then come back to it. Responding aggressively (we could also call it passionately) can have a snowball effect and come back to bite you. So take five, get a friend or family member to read your response and then hit send and don’t look back. You run a boss ass business and one review isn’t going to change the fact.
Tick of approval
Approval. We love it. And we are more likely to trust something that has been verified by other sources. A brand which claims to be animal friendly but isn’t PETA certified? Would we still trust them? Maybe. But we would have to spend more time researching if they really were doing what they say they were doing. Accreditation is powerful and you should show it off if you’ve got it! Source your products ethically? Tell your customers about it. Commit to fair pay? People want to know. Be transparent. People are willing to pay for products that align with their own values.
We want brand advocates!
We want them now! Brand reputation is built on many, many little interactions over time. Online, in person, post-purchase. The job is never done. You want your stakeholder’s loyalty. You want them to advocate for you. You want their trust. In return they want the same from you.
And on that note…
Brand reputation management takes time because strong relationships can’t be created overnight. Start now. Create a plan. Or if you need help, book a one on one consulting with us and we can help you get that big reputation you deserve.