The first area you want to attack in a reputation management campaign is the search engine results page for your company name. That is the first and most obvious place to start building up positive information about your company and pushing negative information down (way down) so that it isn’t easy to find.
But once you have a strong presence on the search engine results for your company name, where else can you go? What do you do next? Well, your company name is not the only thing that potential customers, clients, and employees will search for online before they decide to do business with you. Maybe it’s time to start thinking creatively about the different ways people are finding information about you online. Here are some suggestions to get you started on a path to a broader reputation management strategy.
1. Focus on related searches
What could searchers be adding to your company name in order to find you? Could it be the name of one of your products or services, like “Watch Co. digital watches” or “Wilson Lawn Care fertilizer”? If you are a large company, it might also be a good idea to look at the results pages for searches for key members of your board and upper management along with your company name. Sometimes negative attacks on your company may be directed more specifically at a certain manager or board member, and you can quell those fires before they become problems if you are keeping an eye on broader, related terms.
2. Manage negative terms
Maybe the results page for your company name looks great, but what about the results page for “Wingnut Ltd. scam” or “Wingnut Ltd. rip-off”? Don’t forget, people can also search for negative information about your company directly, using negative keywords like, “scam,” “rip-off,” or “fraud.” If this is the case, you can start building content that includes those keywords, but is focused on positive information. For example, a series of blog guest posts around the internet that discuss how your company and products aren’t scams, rip-offs, or frauds.
When was the last time you did an image search for your company name? In today’s hyper-visual internet world, images can sometimes convey more meaning than 200 blog articles about your company. If you encounter images that display your company in a negative light, maybe it’s time to start thinking about an image campaign that will help increase the number of positive images of your company on the internet.
Of course, these aren’t the only ways that you can get creative with your reputation management strategy. Each company and industry is slightly different and can have different needs and vulnerabilities when it comes to reputation management. The point is, rather, that in order to create a comprehensive reputation management strategy, you need to think about more that your company name. And when you can get creative about how you approach reputation management, you’ll be able to create a stronger reputation online and off.