The reputation of a company is incredibly important, especially in today’s digital era as companies can rely on their reputation to build trust and relationships with their target audiences, employees, as well as investors. With a positive reputation, companies can grow a lot more effectively and get better returns on their investments, and one of the best ways for companies to maintain that positive reputation is through reputation management strategies. Unfortunately, too many businesses tend to wait around until they are facing a public relations crisis before they decide to invest in reputation management, however, there are ways that companies can avoid a mistake and effectively manage their reputation.
The reputation of a company tends to have a direct impact on the sales numbers of that business because over half of all customers tend to research a company and its solutions before they decide to make a purchase with that business. If a potential customer sees a long list of negative reviews or articles about the business, it can negatively impact the way that they perceive the company and lead them to decide to make a purchasing decision with one of the competitors of that business. On the other hand, if that customer sees a large number of positive articles and reviews when they search the company online, they’re a lot more likely to trust the company and make a purchase from that business.
Another reason why companies have to invest in reputation management is because of the reach and speed that social media platforms have these days, even a single negative experience from one customer can end up going viral in just a few hours, which can ruin the reputation that a company has worked so hard to develop and maintain. A more recent example of this happening is from 2017 that came out when the airline company United found itself in the middle of a public relations crisis when a video surfaced of the crew members of a flight dragging one of the passengers off of a plane. The video ended up going viral across social media platforms and generating hundreds of millions of views, which directly impacted the market value of the airline company.
Another reason why it’s so important for companies to effectively manage their public perception and reputation is that by managing it, companies get the opportunity to collect a lot of very valuable customer feedback. Through that feedback and the information that companies can get from their customers, they can use it to improve their solutions, and the overall customer experience, by listening to what the consumers have to say, and taking their criticisms at face value, while working to improve the company. Although companies should always be conducting surveys and polls to figure out different ways that they can improve, plenty of consumers provide companies with their unsolicited feedback that can help companies figure out new and different ways to improve.