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The Importance of Managing Reputation
When operating in the competitive world of attracting talent, managing your reputation can be a key element of your success. Your reputation can suffer all kinds of knocks from every direction, some of the criticism may be justified and others less so. However, it doesn't matter whether the criticism is justified or not. If damaging comments are being levelled at your company, these will be taken along with the rest of the information that comes out and weighed up in the round by your potential future employees.
There are some high roads and low roads to managing your reputation online. Some PR tactics have been getting a bad press, and quite rightly so. There are certain things that companies do to manage their public image that can seem underhand or even at the fringes of fraudulent. Of course, some of these less savoury tactics can seriously backfire and leave a bad taste in the mouth of the talent you're hoping to attract.
We have some helpful tips for you to help you manage your brand reputation for the benefit of your organisation as a whole. They’re simple strategies, but ones that we hope will pay off in your overall protection of your employer brand.
Speak for yourself
One of the ways to ensure that people are getting a positive message about your organisation is to make sure that you're putting out plenty of positive messages yourself. Using your website, social media channels, PR and publicity you can make sure that there are plenty of upbeat stories about your business in circulation.
When it comes to building your employer brand, choosing the channels through which you put out those messages is also an important element in making an impact. Marketing research and analysis can help you to target your PR efforts in the right direction depending on where your audience is likely to be reading. This doesn’t mean resorting to tactics such as establishing fake user accounts online and posting glowing reviews of your services, your credentials as an employer or your brand as a whole as some marketers have been known to do. This kind of shill activity can seriously damage your reputation in the long run if you’re found out and with a greater degree of scrutiny of such activity these days, it’s quite likely.
Rapid response to the rescue
It’s almost certain that any organisation that is active in the marketplace will get some kind of bad press at some point. The important thing to do when the situation arises is to make sure you respond quickly to any criticism that is received.
Allowing bad news to go unchallenged can be much more dangerous than the bad news itself. Silence in the face of criticism can seem like an admission of guilt, so get your response out quickly to make sure this cannot be said of your company.
If someone launches an aggressive attack on your reputation, the temptation can be to retaliate in kind. However, when it comes to protecting your reputation this may not be the best course of action. Hacker tactics such as overloading critical websites with traffic in what’s known as a Denial of Service attack is one of the methods that have been used by less scrupulous marketers to silence critics and protect reputations. If this kind of activity is detected, the finger of suspicion can come back to rest with your company and that can be extremely damaging.
The vast majority of criticism that you receive is likely to come with some useful feedback that can help you improve the way you do things. Responding positively and setting out how you intend to use the comments to improve your processes either directly to an individual commenter through social media or to adverse news reports through press releases and updates on your website can demonstrate your responsiveness to criticism in a constructive way. This is extremely good for anyone’s corporate reputation.
There are many ways to go about managing your reputation as a good company and a good employer. Some of these are less than legitimate and while they may seem like a short-cut to kerbing criticism can come back and bite you later. Taking the high road in managing your reputation can further enhance your reputation in itself.
Image Credits: krossbow and Leap Kye