Online reputation management (ORM) is the analysis of your personal or professional reputation as represented by content across all types of online media channels. Fred Roed at World Wide Creative breaks this down to a more digestible chunk. “Basically, when people online write stuff about you, you should know about it fast enough to be able to respond – especially if it’s negative stuff” Fred says. So, what do you do to improve your business’ ORM? How do you deal with negative discussion or criticism? And, how do you monitor your business’ ORM online? These are a few questions often asked. Here are my answers to all these questions:
Q: How do you improve your business’ ORM?
- Sign up for a Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, YouTube and LinkedIn account.
- For Facebook and LinkedIn, learn how to claim your vanity URL here and here, respectively.
- With YouTube and Twitter, be sure to choose a username as close to your real name as possible. MySpace will give you the option of obtaining a vanity URL when you register.
- Create a Google Profile, which also will rank high.
- Purchase a domain with your name
Q: How do you deal with negative comments?
A: The worst thing you can possibly do is join in and fight back online. You’re welcome to respond thoughtfully or ignore it. Responding to a negative comment publically could also add fire to the flames. Rather try to contact the person offline. Ask them for their email address or cell phone number so you can help them if they complained about bad service.
These things can get out of hand and you could get slandered online. Don’t call your lawyers just yet, rather invest in professional help to manage your ORM and deal with positive and negative chatter on your behalf.
Q: How do you monitor your business’ ORM?
- Search engines: Google, Yahoo, and Microsoft’s
- Bing Blogosphere: Known blogs in your professional arena, or use blog search engines such as Technorati or Google Blog Search
- Forums: Known discussion threads in your professional arena
- Social networking sites: Facebook, MySpace, LinkedIn
- Microblogging sites: Twitter, Jaikuand Plurk, Social Mention
- Personal rating sites: PersonRatings.com
- Corporate Web sites: Your company, former places of work