Helping Small Businesses Grow

Do You Know What Kind of Online Reputation Your Business Has?

Posted by admin | On: Dec 01 2011

Let Me Give You A Hint On This Answer. It Could Determine The Success Or Demise Of Your Business.

Whether you have a website or not, you have an online reputation and it’s essential to your local business Internet marketing strategy that it’s managed correctly.

Overlooking your online reputation can be quite devastating to your local business. In today’s online environment, if people want to know whether or not they should decide to do business with you or one of your competitors, they hop onto websites like Google Reviews, Yelp, Epinions and other review sites to see what past clients and interested parties are saying about your business.

The fact is that whether you have much of an online presence or not, it’s likely your customers are talking about you and your prospective clients are researching that information before making a decision on who to choose to do business with.

My suggestion is that business owners and managers as part of their online marketing strategy incorporate a policy of regularly searching online for their company and owner/s names to discover what past clients and others are saying about them. Hopefully there are lots of good reviews but it’s possible that there could be some damaging comments that might be preventing you from getting new clients.

In fact, Opinion Research Corporation conducted a survey and concluded from their research that 84% of Americans polled say online reviews influence their purchase decisions. I can affirm that from my many years of experience as a marketing consultant, that this is true and is actually still growing in importance as more and more local businesses grow their online presence and the general population gets more familiar with using review sites.

In today’s fast paced online environment and connected marketplace, the Internet is a very powerful sales and marketing tool for local businesses. It can either propel your business to massive new growth and profits or it can significantly hamper your marketing momentum. The point is that in today’s world, anybody can post either a positive or negative blog comment, review, Facebook comment or tweet and it can be seen by tons of your prospective clients. But here’s the real kicker…that bad post never goes away. It will always be there in the annals of Internet history.

What this means is that in today’s online world your prospective clients spend more time than ever researching their choices and options by reading reviews before making a purchasing decision. Even just one single negative post could be the difference between you getting that new customer or them.

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Choosing one of your competitors. Conversely, a positive review could easily result in driving new customers to your business.

In the world of Search Engine Optimization (SEO) the quantity and quality of reviews, blog posts, forum comments etc. that your marketplace is saying about you does make a difference when you are working to achieve local business domination in your niche.

My advice to you is that I strongly encourage you to ask your satisfied customers to post positive reviews about your company. Also, I urge you to monitor what’s being said about your business and if you find something unpleasant then use it as an opportunity to make improvements. You also have the right to respond but I caution you to do so delicately to address the issues and not flame additional negative posts.

Conclusion
Just remember this… your online reputation is critical to the success of your business. When you meet or exceed your client’s expectations, you will get happy customers who will post positive comments building up your reputation and your business growth opportunity.

One last tip is that you can use Google’s free “Google Alert” system that will automatically inform you of when your business is mentioned in a blog, review post or other online forum. Also, a number of the review sites give business owners the option of receiving an email when a review is posted so you can monitor what is being said about your business helping you to manage your online reputation.

Quick Tip

Look Who's Talking

Your greatest asset is your customer base or your list. Make sure to capture as much information about them as possible to add even more segmentation value when targeting your marketing messages. “In today’s competitive market a small business simply cannot afford wasting time in reinventing the wheel – and there’s no need. The basic strategies you teach here has helped me to implement a marketing plan of action that has guided potential clients in my direction. This has resulted in a big increase in production and limited time competing for customers!
Thanks Kevin!”
Bret Helm

5 Comments

  1. I agree with you actually.. I really suffered a very similar problem and implemented everything you had taught and so it helped like magic

  2. Owning a small business is a huge challenge. Between trying to make enough sales to cover expenses and handling everything else you need to run a small business, most owners have very little time left for themselves or their families.

    And this is unfortunate because starting a business to live a better life should be something you should be proud of and not stressed about. But it is difficult to balance your business with your personal life and sometimes you need help.

    Small business coaching and consulting can help you get more out of your business in less time, so you can make more while working less.

  3. Ainhoa says:

    post has been excellent and i have referred it to many of my friends. my honour for the work that you have done. thank you once again.

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