Reputation Management Part II - Why it’s all about earning user trust
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In an era where the internet never forgets, and social media platforms can take your brand's reputation on an exhilarating or terrifying roller-coaster ride, managing your reputation has become a non-negotiable factor.
Let's dive into the insights shared at our recent webinar by two industry experts - Dana Pavel, Customer Success Manager at AppFollow, and Waleria Pągowska, Product Marketing Specialist at Brand24, and untangle the essentials of reputation management
Facts: reputation management is a must.
Reputation management involves monitoring, influencing, and managing how people perceive our brands online. Online reviews and comments steer consumer behavior heavily. Would you want to buy an app that has terrible reviews? Probably not. How about an app with hundreds of thousands of 4-5 star ratings? Worth a try, at the very least.
Here's why it happens:
- Brand trust: Approximately 75% of consumers trust a company more if it has positive reviews, and about 85% trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. However, negative reviews can deter 60% of consumers from using a business.
- Brand image: Engaging actively with consumer feedback can set your brand apart from competitors. This also aids in crisis management by mitigating potential damage to your company when something goes wrong, and in the real world, it usually does.
- Financial impact: Each additional one-star increase in Yelp rating can cause up to a 9% increase in business revenue.
There are many platforms where you can get feedback on your product, the most popular ones being online reviews and ratings. Apart from the app stores, places such as Google reviews, Yelp, TripAdvisor, and more industry-specific sites are where people go to leave their reviews or read about your brand.
Another key area is social media platforms, which are less controllable. Everything can happen on social media - your product could go viral in a second, so you must closely monitor what's being said about your brand.
Search engine results are one more source of information about your brand. I recommend you type in your brand or area of specialty and go through the first page of the results. Most people, around 98%, don't go beyond the first page of Google, so anything beyond that might not be worth the effort.
Managing reviews: do's and don'ts
Reviews provide a wealth of information about what works for your users and what doesn't. These insights inform your roadmap and prioritize development tasks. Users often make feature requests in reviews, which, if implemented, can move your product closer to being customer-centric.
When users see that their feedback is important and heard, they are more likely to stay with you and make more purchases. In times of crisis, fast responses can demonstrate your commitment to addressing user concerns.
However, managing reviews effectively isn't a walk in the park and requires a well-structured approach. Here are some best practices to help manage reviews:
- Respond to all reviews, prioritizing critical ones;
- Respond swiftly, ideally within 24-48 hours, showing users their feedback matters;
- Follow up with users who complained once an issue is resolved;
- Address reviews with false information about your product or service politely;
- Positive reviews can be used in marketing materials or case studies;
- Refrain from concluding communications with a simple 'thank you for your response'. Take it further with emails, video sessions, etc, if you can;
- Avoid generic or automated responses.
Remember, your responses are public, making every interaction a potential influence on other customers.
Navigating the social media
Managing reputation on social media can be tricky. There's the barrage of negative feedback, crisis situations, and managing multiple platforms simultaneously. However, establishing a social media monitoring system, preparing a crisis management plan, being transparent, and being proactive are potent weapons in your arsenal.
However, solutions exist:
- Establish a social media monitoring system;
- Prepare a crisis management plan;
- Be transparent and proactive;
- Engage with your audience.
Professionals specializing in app reputation management need the proper training to handle their roles effectively. Paying attention to do's and don'ts can ensure your online reputation remains solid. Show empathy, apologize when necessary, provide solutions, keep your promises, maintain professionalism, and above all, respect privacy or confidentiality.
For example, ClickMeeting, which uses Brand24 for reputation management, tracks its own feedback and its competitors'. This has helped them identify issues like digital fatigue among their users during the pandemic, and they responded by creating a toolkit to address it.
Maintaining a positive online reputation for individuals or personal brands involves a slightly different approach. For instance, offering an Amazon gift card in exchange for a review can be an effective strategy. People tend to be more empathetic towards individuals, so it's important to respond to your followers, treat them with warmth, and listen to what they have to say.
Leveraging AI-powered technologies can speed up these processes and bring about significant benefits.
Remember, managing your reputation isn't a sprint; it's a marathon. It requires time, patience, and a good deal of listening. But the rewards are plentiful and worth the effort. And isn't that what good business is all about?