1) Know Your Online Rankings.
Conduct a thorough assessment of your online profiles to help you identify the strengths, weaknesses, and opportunities to improve.
Take inventory on which review and rating sites your company is being talked about? How many customers and employees (ex-employees) have engaged these sites to voice their opinions? Look at the average rating and overall response on each ranking site?
Tip: Even though you may not be aware of it, your company most likely has a listing on Google, Yelp, and YP.com.
If your company isn’t already monitoring reviews and rankings, you need to assign a point person to receive alerts and respond to every review.
2) Find someone who can sing the song of your people.
This designated point person should be someone you can trust to not only stay on top of online reviews, but to provide a prompt and empathetic response directly to dissatisfied reviewers.
They should be equipped to carefully craft a reply that establishes kindness and expertise. Remember, your customers are experiencing a wide array of issues that affect their words and tone.
3) Respond to EVERY review.
Positive reviews are what we are striving for. Remember, negative reviews can also be positive for business. It allows us the opportunity to make a case in the face of disparagement, opening a two-way discussion with our audience.
Responding to reviews of all types sends a message to your customers that you value their feedback and care about finding a resolution. Besides, our potential customers expect to see a combination of positive and negative reviews and become apprehensive if they don’t.
Good or bad, make a conscious effort to reply to all reviews within 48 hours.
4) Make it easy as 1, 2, 3.
If you hear one of your customers had a great experience with your company, give the accolade some staying power. Send the customer a follow-up email with links to your Google+ page, Facebook page, or Yelp page, asking them to share their experience out to your online communities. You can even walk them through the process.
Share these testimonials on social, this encourages others to follow suit. To better track and get them to talk, create a custom hashtag. #MYSOCIALREP
5) Suppress the negative.
The best way of pushing any damaging content lower on search results pages can be achieved by generating fresh content. And lots of it.
Consistent social posting can improve your reputation by contradicting negative results with positive content you create. Content can come in the form of social media posts, website updates, press releases, and blog entries.