6 Questions To Ask Your Reputation Management Agency

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Businesses rely on their online reputation to draw people to their website or retail store. Most consumers today will carry out brief online research before they buy a product or invest in a brand. Unfortunately, managing your online reputation isn’t as straightforward as it appears. Businesses often have to deal with negative reviews, complaints on consumer review websites, and other such challenges. You need an experienced and qualified reputation management company in your corner to succeed. 

Here are some questions you can ask your shortlisted reputation management agency before hiring them:

1. What will you monitor?

It is nearly impossible to monitor the entirety of the internet. However, it is possible to cast a wide net and catch the most influential opinions online. For example, your reputation management agency may set up Google alerts, monitor the popular blogs in your industry, and even keep an eye on social media hashtags and mentioned. Most reputation management companies take the time to understand where your brand is most likely to be most prominent.

Marketers will keep their eyes on comments, reviews, and even images related to your brand to ensure everything is positive. The list of spaces agencies monitor can differ from one brand to another.

2. How should I respond to negative feedback?

There are different ways to respond to negative feedback. The goal should always be to turn a negative experience into a positive experience. The best way to go about it is to respond quickly, thank the customer for their comments, apologize for their poor experience, and then set about resolving the matter. You need to make sure the situation is addressed fully and efficiently. 

However, if the negative feedback is sent by a malicious person and is unwarranted, you can gather evidence and appeal directly to the host. For example, Google allows business owners to take down these unwarranted reviews. The process is different for different review platforms, which is why hiring a professional reputation management company can help. 

3. Can you remove all negative reviews?

It is nearly impossible to remove all negative reviews. The process is long, drawn-out, and requires a lot of effort. A good reputation management company will approach the situation carefully, based on the circumstances of the review. For example, the easiest tactic is to overwhelm negative feedback with positive feedback. Almost every business has a few negative reviews. If you get good comments from a fresh wave of customers, the older comments will be buried and the rating average will tip in your favor. 

Sometimes, a reputation management company will reach out to the customer and ask them to remove reviews after resolving the issue. Most customers will be willing to remove their poor feedback if they’re convinced the brand is doing better and has honest intentions. 

4. How will you handle a poor reputation?

Different situations require different approaches. Every platform has a different set of rules and regulations. For example, Yelp has a very detailed guideline on how to remove unfavorable reviews if they’re not warranted. The approach for Google is different and requires additional planning. 

Ask your marketer what their plan of approach is for your most pressing concerns. A reliable professional will explain everything in detail so you can make informed decisions. 

5. Will you provide detailed reports?

Most business owners want to keep track of their progress. The best way to do that is to discuss key performance indicators during a consultation and then read the monthly reports clearly. A reputation management company will provide clear reports every week or month based on your preferences. You can look at the performance indicators mentioned during the initial meeting and make decisions based on the information provided. 

Ask the marketer about their information-gathering process. Do they use some sort of analytics tools? How do they actively track the metrics? Is the information provided accurate?

6. How do you handle a negative search result on the first page?

Negative search results can also have a big impact on your sales. When someone searches your brand name and only sees a negative blog post complaining about your customer service or product quality, they’ll look elsewhere. 

Most reputation management companies will provide content to help overwhelm the negative impression. When these positive content pieces start to rank, they may be able to push the harmful blog post to a different page. 

A good reputation management agency will come up with a nuanced plan and explain everything to you during the consultation.

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