Reputation Management is one of the latest buzzwords to start showing up in polite conversation today. Lots of people are talking about it and how it’s a necessity but many people are unclear as to exactly what this means. So, for those who are confused, our quick guide to what reputation management actually entails:
Separating Personal from Business
Before we even talk about this, we need to make a separation. There are technically two kinds of reputation management. The first one involves managing your personal reputation online, which is a very different thing from managing your business reputation online.
Personal reputation management basically means scrubbing the web of any kind of material which could be embarrassing to you or emphasizing material which isn’t embarrassing so as to minimize the embarrassing stuff.
Business reputation management, which is what we do does much the same thing but for your business. However, the methods are different. A personal reputation management firm might try to go through your Facebook page and help you to figure out which images need to be removed and or untagged from you for example.
That’s not usually a problem for business management because in spite of Mitt Romney’s assertion that corporations are people, corporations don’t usually have pictures of themselves getting drunk at a party on the web (though they may have some rowdy pictures of the company Christmas party online which could be an issue).
Building Good Links to Bury Bad Ones
In essence, reputation management for a business involves trying to minimize the impact of junk links and or bad reviews of the company which appear on other parts of the web. It’s pretty much impossible to make those things go away completely; however, it is possible to minimize them by creating really good links.
In essence, what we would do is to create high quality backlinks from relevant pages which have only a handful of links per page so that they remain worthwhile. Then, we use those links to build your business up and get it to be noticed by the search engines. It works kind of the way American ideas of free speech works.
The old saying is that the best way to combat hate speech is with more speech. After all, you can’t kill an idea, no matter how heinous most people may believe it to be. Trying to ban such ideas will simply make those who believe in them even more determined to get their messages out. However, when you try to counter those ideas with other, better ideas, they become marginalized and people stop paying attention.
Reputation management is based on the same concept – while it’s virtually impossible to stamp out every negative review of your company and or to use the Google disavow tool to remove all the junk links from your portfolio, those things can be minimized. The way to do it is to use really good links which will in essence “drown out” the junk links and junk messages, making them less likely to count against you in the SERPs.