Prologue

Having a well-placed strategy for omnichannel reputation management is more important for brands in current times than it has ever been before. In a fiercely competitive B2B world, where delivering phenomenal customers’ experience is paramount to optimizing purchases, having an inveterate strategy for omnichannel reputation management can help the businesses stand out in the fiercely competitive race for branding – by establishing immaculate brand resonances.

Omnichannel reputation management (also sometimes referred to as rep management or Online Reputation Management (ORM)), is the practice of shaping the public perception of personas & organizations by influencing information about the brands – primarily done online (though offline methods are still prevalent but not as significant as the online ones). For the sake of convenience, we will primarily be keeping our blog contextual to online reputation management practices. 

With the popularity of the internet & social media arose the multi-channel & omnichannel marketing tactics which ultimately obliged & gave birth to the strategies for omnichannel reputation management, together with approaches for managing public relations as an essential part.

Before the concept of online omnichannel reputation management picked up, companies used to rely exclusively upon offline word-of-mouth-marketing (WOMM). As the popularity of the internet for marketing research picked up, word of mouth marketing also evolved & went majorly online.

Joei Chan, a Content marketer at Mention explained the importance of social listening in omnichannel reputation management as follows:

“…most customers understand that problems cannot be solved immediately, but they need to know you listened, and are doing your best to provide a solution.”

Brands need to polite, professional & empathetic online. Also, being proactive in resolving the queries & grievances of customers aids omnichannel reputation management, which, in turn, is constituted of the following crucial steps:

Step 1:

Monitoring & positively influencing the online reputation of brands or businesses.

Step 2:

Addressing the negative mentions or reviews & trying to resolve them as soon as possible, by providing effective solutions to convert them into positive ones.

The three main tasks entailed under omnichannel reputation management can be primarily classified as under:

  • Building:

The Building phase in “omnichannel reputation management” is primarily for the brands that are new & still trying to build strong brand equity.

  • Maintenance:

This phase is primarily applicable for the companies that already have established a good reputation, i.e. those who have got a rep to protect.

  • Recovery:

This is the toughest phase for brands & requires a bit of restoration. Brands in the recovery phase of “omnichannel reputation management” are the ones that have probably been hit through bad reviews & need to substantiate some serious self-promotion & good marketing to win over the trust of their prospects & customers & undo the damage being done.

Ways to Design & Optimize Omnichannel Reputation Management

Online reputation management is the most predominant way for the marketers to thrive in a highly competitive world where branding is paramount to selling as it is a direct reflection of how must trust your brand inspires in the minds of prospects.

The following are some of the principal ways to build online reputation management:

  • Blogging:

Businesses have to have a blog that is frequently updated with topics of interest to the buyer personas & also covers the main news & reviews resonating with the recent activities of the brands. A solid public relation (PR) strategy forms the backbone of omnichannel reputation management.

Having online directories is important for businesses as it drives a significant amount of website on the primary domain of the websites as the users’ searches for the information related to the businesses in the online directories picks up.

  • Encourage Customers to Leave Reviews:

According to a study by E-tailing Group, 92% of the customers read internet reviews.

Hence, brands must focus on maximizing the number of positive reviews being left on several platforms across the web – including the primary domain of the websites.

Furthermore, a study by Cone Inc. implies that astoundingly 89% of the users trust online reviews.

  • Organize & Sponsor events to gain publicity:

This is one of the most effective ways of offline reputation management. However, publicizing the events being sponsored online also sets the pace for an online omnichannel reputation management framework to function in conjunction with the offline endeavors for bringing traffic by branding. Even, hosting virtual events & live webinars is helpful for reputation building & management.

According to a report by Westuc, 70% of the marketers who have already hosted virtual events acceded that they plan to host more & those who have attended such events are 50% more likely to attend the subsequent ones also.

  • Go Social:

According to Reputation.com, 78% of the customers consider it important to research the brands online before making a buying decision.

Undoubtedly, social media platforms are the channels that marketers need to make the best use of for omnichannel reputation management. Brands can scrutinize their social endeavors & can also look to tap into the unconventional social media channels that hold the potential for bolstering their businesses’ ROI.

Defining & Measuring Social KPIs holds the key to optimize social media strategies. Also, social media serves as an excellent platform for providing customer service & for building brand resonance.

  • Invest in Reputation Management Tools:

Several online reputation management tools are available for marketers which allow them to create custom reports & monitor & competitively benchmark their online reputation management strategies on websites such as Yelp, TripAdvisor, etc. These include Mention, Reputology, The Brand Grader & SimilarWeb.

Benefits of Omnichannel Reputation Management

Patrick Whatman, a Content marketer at Spendesk, quotes the importance of omnichannel reputation management as follows:

“You build your reputation on positive criticism, so encouraging it is a must”.

Some of the benefits of omnichannel reputation management are listed as under:

  • It helps in Improving the online Reach of Brands:

In an era of multichannel marketing, brands must have omnichannel reputation management strategies in place. Customers choose to interact on online platforms & hence, the best of SEO & social media strategies are employed by companies to achieve the cause. Consequently, the reach of the brands is improved by employing omnichannel reputation management strategies. 

  • Omnichannel Reputation Management Scales Up Sales & Marketing Activities:

This one is the most obvious implication of omnichannel reputation management. Several studies have shown that people are more likely to purchase from brands whose stories they can resonate with & those that have inspiring visions for the prospects to look up to.

Consequently, having a well-strategized approach for omnichannel reputation management helps the brands optimize their pieces of content & other marketing campaigns & lead to an increased number of sales conversions & improved returns on marketing investment (ROMI). Content reaches more readers as they trust the brands; consequently the probabilities of expediting purchases are higher.

  • Reputation Management helps Businesses Thrive:

Omnichannel reputation management strengthens brand equity & brand resonance. It thus is an impeccable tool for businesses to thrive as it helps them in crafting unique identities in the minds of the prospects.

  • Omnichannel Reputation Management is Flourishing &  has a Massive Influence on Public Opinion & SEO:

With the growth in omnichannel marketing practices, reputation management has become inevitable.

According to a study by Visually, 87% of the customers reverse a purchase decision after encountering a negative content online about a brand or product.

Online reputation management whether it be on platforms like Google, Face, yelp, New York Times or even a viral content strategy holds the potential to influence public opinion. If done right omnichannel reputation management helps in driving a substantial amount of organic traffic as well as promotes online positive word of mouth referrals for marketers to bank upon.

Omnichannel reputation management thus helps in client acquisition, engagement as well as in driving greater conversions.

  • Helps Prospects make Unbiased Decisions By Empowering them to See Beyond the Cognitive Biases:

Online reputation management practices focus on promoting customer testimonials & experiences across omnichannel. It influences the buying decisions of prospects more positively by helping them to get rid of the cognitive biases.

Wrapping It Up

Nowadays, omnichannel reputation management requires both proactivity as well as reactivity. With the invasion of plenty of review sites, news media, PR websites & twitter the reputation of every brand is at stake & there is a huge risk as deteriorative practices by rival hackers can ruin brands’ online reputation overnight. Therefore, marketers need to abide by a multitude of methods for designing full-proof omnichannel reputation management arsenals.  The essential components of the same include Search Engine & technical optimizations, having effective tools for social listening & responses, having reputation monitoring tools & a framework for link portfolio management.

We, at Valasys Media, help our B2B clients with hyper-targeted campaigns & host of other services such as lead generation, account-based marketing, lead nurturing, event promotion services, list building services & content syndication services to help them optimize their core bottom-line endeavors such as an optimized sales revenue & improved users’ experiences.

For deciphering the pathways to perpetually healthy sales pipelines, get in touch with our team of experts.

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