You may have heard about reputation since you were a child but everybody told you that it doesn’t matter what others think but only what you think about yourself. That generally may be good and inspiring advice but when you are an entrepreneur, you may want to think this twice.
Business reputation can either trigger your company’s success or lead it to failure. And in today’s digitalized world, the power of business reputation, especially in the online world, is something that no business owner should mess with.
Here is how to keep your company’s reputation clean and avoid the pitfalls of the online world:
Why is business reputation important?
In today’s business landscape, brand reputation is paramount. We are living in an era where all the bad and good stuff customers have to say about your business can reach the other part of the world within seconds. So, it is no longer about customers spreading bad rumors among their peers. Nowadays, customers have the power to share their opinions with the entire world.
In a way, this could work in your favor and boost your company’s worldwide success if your customers have only good things to say about you. However, unsatisfied customers can and, most likely will, spread their poor experiences with your brand a lot faster than positive experiences will be shared.
Business reputation is everything in a world where consumers rely on their peers’ experiences with a brand to make their purchasing decisions more than ever before. And the Internet and technology are the two most relevant elements which have led to this consumer behavior trend.
Always keep a large smile on your face
No, you shouldn’t take this advice for its literarily meaning. You should understand that it actually means that it is important to stay cool in front of your customers no matter the situation. It is extremely important to act and react professionally in any situation no matter if your customers leave you a negative review in the online world or make a scene at your office.
Positivity and politeness are the two best weapons you have to keep a good reputation even in critical situations. Also, you are not the only one who should pay attention to their attitude when facing difficulty with a customer, you should also train your employees to do exactly the same.
Keep your business away from controversial topics
In today’s Social Media era, almost everybody has an opinion about the latest world events and they usually share it with their online peers. Whether it is a political crisis in a country, a dramatic event, or a natural disaster, you will find lots of social media posts that discuss them. Well, you may want to keep your business away from them because it takes only one skeptical internet user to misinterpret your words and associate your brand with a negative opinion in the eyes of everyone in the online world. There have been many cases when reputable brands decided to post on their social media accounts a message regarding a world event. And, guess what, it never went well because some internet users criticized them for their opinion. As an individual, it is ok to have your own opinions about different topics and share them with your peers, but as a business owner, it is advisable to stay away from discussions that may arise controversy around your brand.
Ask for customer feedback
Whether customers have good or bad things to say about your business, they will want to have the chance to do it. And, most importantly, they want to feel like their opinion is important to you.
Showing an authentic interest in connecting with your customers to listen to their feedback is the best way to show how important they are to your business. Plus, both positive and negative feedback give your business a lot of room to grow.
When asking for feedback, you must answer it. Period! Otherwise, your customers will feel neglected and unimportant and will not hesitate to turn their heads towards your competitors who give them more credit for their success.
It is vital to answer online feedback, especially if it is a negative one and especially if your business has been wronged. Keep in mind that other internet users will see the negative reviews and might get the wrong idea about your business. However, even if the review of the unsatisfied customer is genuine and your business has really made them a mistake, then take your time to apologize and show that you are able to manage such situations with professionalism.
Remember you are your brand’s face
One crucial aspect that most business owners forget about is the fact that they represent the face of their businesses. And, whatever they say or do will affect their business’s reputation too. Thus, it is extremely important that you mind your manners and actions wherever you are because you never know who might be watching.
For example, if you would be involved in a lawsuit for a mistake that you have made or for a misunderstanding, the rumors that will be spread about you will also make your audience question your business. So, it is important that you get legal support from the best criminal defense attorney Salt Lake City who can help you stand back up and defend yourself and your reputation. This way, you will ensure that your professional and business reputation will both remain clean.
Fixing your reputation is difficult
Fixing your business reputation after a bad experience which has made customers question your brand can be really difficult. However, it isn’t impossible! Even as an entrepreneur you can make some mistakes that will cost you your business’s good reputation. However, now it is the time to ask your customers from a little empathy and make them understand that you have the power to learn from your mistakes to improve. When your business’s reputation or your professional reputation is experiencing a difficult time, learn how to trigger empathy in your audience.
Good business reputation is extremely important for your company’s long-term success. Thus, it is vital that you always make sure your brand is seen positively through the eyes of your audience.