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The Joy Of Rep

Decent reputations feel real good

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Reputation management sounds so cold and formal. While it may excite the MBA crowd, the rest of us want to see a little joy with rep.

By now you’ve seen our reputation management video; if not, go take a look, Mike McDonald’s a sensitive soul and needs your viewing affection.

Back already? You’ve got a piece of popcorn right there…ok, good, we’ll begin. Reputation is all about what others express about you.

It connects how you treat customers with other potential customers. On the Internet, nothing travels faster than bad news, other than Miley Cyrus pictures, we think.

Reputation is a wave to ride, lest you enjoy the sensation of being washed away in a sea of bad news. That doesn’t happen at once, it’s just that most people don’t pay attention to the gentle lapping of water at their ankles until a giant wall of water arrives.

Over at the Top Rank Blog, guest poster and marketing pro David Alston noted ten items to watch in your reputation management efforts.

Sounds like work? Well spotted there, you’re absolutely right. Reputation means a lot online. For our business readers in particular, your well-earned positive rep might mean more conversions and increased sales.

Alston cited needs to keep an eye on complaints (“A complaint is an opportunity to demonstrate problem-solving abilities”) and compliments (“Create a del.icio.us account or use another social bookmarking utility and save all of these compliments in a list for future use.”) They affect your rep, and need attention.

The next one requires a little tradeoff of time and knowledge for the prospect of a future customer. By looking for expressed needs falling within your niche and responding with advice, Alston believes the person looking for help will appreciate the response.

Reputation management looks like one of those fields that will take off so dramatically, we will be hard-pressed someday to recall a time when people did not dedicate some resources to doing so. Last month’s Umbria acquisition by J.D. Power probably kicked off that era, as the survey firm taps the Net to understand brand reputations better.

We know the benefits of knowledge and information these days. Being aware of one’s reputation serves as an extension of this. It’s not too late to tap available resources and revel in the joy of rep.

The Joy Of Rep
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