Take control of your media reputation by following Media Coverage’s 5 steps for brand managemen
Written by Angel Mora
As individuals, we innately understand what trust means, regardless of the heading: finances, relationships, products, or services. That’s why when we’re talking about businesses, media reputation comes before anything else; and will always figure as the main component behind credibility rates.
Digital spaces in 2020 present brands with a complex scenario, where the way they choose to be seen and consumed – as well as its subsequent success (or failure)- are indivisible factors that translate into deciding whether or not to make a purchase.
According to Podium, when consumers face two offers providing virtually equal assets, 68% tend to select the most expensive option if the brand conveys a superior Web experience.
Below in this article, I’m going to answer the most common questions about media reputation management and how to carry out essential tasks following our principles here at Media Coverage (even if you don’t know much about online marketing).
The formula for success
When this day is over, 123,300 businesses will have been declared failures, and at least 80 of them will close their offline and online operations permanently.
They just didn’t know how to handle their media reputation correctly.
Platforms in the style of Tripadvisor, Amazon, Uber, Airbnb, or Forbes, respond to users’ perception; supported by the expectations inflicted during the experience funnel. The good news is that it is possible to build or enhance your own digital space and its branches by distributing value, which will lead to achieving a positive image and praise.
Such coordinated efforts will end up optimizing not only aspects such as positioning in networks but the role that your brand is meant to play in the daily routine of your potential now-clientele.
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The 5 steps to media reputation’s (almost perfect) managing
Being credibility the maximum resource for you as a brand leader, in order to not succumb to backlash and misinterpretations wherein the company’s identity or the nature of the offer, any actions need to be preceded by outlining activities and thorough research on the performance of the industry as a whole.
There is a common assumption that negative repercussions are proof that a business has been poorly planned; but, this perception does not necessarily have to come from the product itself. Sometimes just stumbling across a poorly designed, slow-loading, or information-lacking website does all the (bad) work.
In Roberto Liccardo’s best-seller “Marketing Growth Secret: Growth Hacking, Marketing, PR and Brand Strategies to Lead Your Startup to Success“, the expert states that after one direct interaction between users and brands (voluntary or not), there is a 45% chance they will post about it in the following 15 minutes.
For this reason, avoid at all costs using tactics of competitors, and instead create your own route starting from the available resources.
Prevention is the key
Unfortunately, these days, many new companies are tempted to engage in controversy and negative reviews from the start, with the simple goal of accumulating mentions. Do you need to get enter a crisis to get your business notified? Absolutely not.
Recently in my article “How to subdue uncontrolled communications channels in full swing of e-commerce 2.0” I discussed how surprisingly easy it can be to fall from the public’s grace and never recover simply because people have received a message that slightly misfits what was promised. That’s the reason why campaigns get squandered by unfavorable comments so often.
By contrast, when you execute actions stimulating positive reactions – i.e. Samsung’s “Within” campaign-, it significantly increases your company’s chances of standing out in areas such as customer relationship and satisfaction rates.
In summary, your strategies must involve a 360 ° view of the current commercial landscape, including how to showcase your products and benefits and places and the effectiveness of recruitment.
This can be easily broken down in 5 rules:
- Be consistently effective:
A reputable company’s trajectory is determined by a complete and relevant presence in the media accessed by its ideal audience. This implies that both the online and offline aspects must operate under the precepts of achieving greater visibility.
To carry out this task, start by building a perfectly structured website that reflects inner corporate values defining the brand, as this will feed a positive feeling in users.
- 84% of young users abandon a website after having a negative experience regarding page navigation and fluidity of services, StatusLabs states.
In the height of e-commerce 2.0, make sure that your solutions are easy to access: minimize the number of clicks and filters per purchase, use readable language as well as accompany each section with extra value. There you will already be taking a firm step to earning a good reputation in digital media.
- Prompt to evolve:
The social platforms in which your company makes a presence must be those your target audience revolves around. On that matter, analyze your buyer persona’s profile.
Listening to the demands and suggestions of the market will allow you to keep your offer updated as well as innovate your communication tactics – complete silence can also be an answer; therefore, take it into account.
- Establish a connection:
Passive roles of the general public are a thing of the past; so be sure to enable a system of bi-directionality. People appreciate when brands demonstrate what they aim for is excellence in their services. This quality is measured through sustainable relationships and fluid business-to-client communication.
Of course, you have to reckon that the users you are dealing with are highly proactive and demanding human beings, just like you.
- Deliver more:
Appearing at the top of Google results is the number 1 priority of startups as they are a reliable indicator of their level of market penetration.
Hence, having an interesting product is not enough. Consumers are seeking a solution to specific problems in exchange for their time online.
The most prestigious brands are those that provide informative, promotional, and even exclusive content to their followers. This fulfills a particular cycle: The more (intelligently distributed) content you make, the better your brand is going to perform in the ranks, increasing the traffic.
In a recent report held by Ahrefs, it was published that up to 8% of online experiences had their starting point in search engines. Meanwhile, 15% of leads generated by a brand culminate in a sale.
What type of content should you do?
It must be a proposal that statistically interests the target audience and enriches them (discounts, infographics, entertainment, …). From there, the value that I mentioned in the first point arises – which can lead to a possible viralization.
- Think big:
If you commit to the previous steps, the brand will improve gradually as well as the lives of its customers. This is the point where you need to have a follow-up plan.
One very important thing is to consider the evolution of social media and its expiration. Try not to rely solely on one or two channels. It is ideal to outline goals and projections that are continually renewed.
A media plan addresses these and many more aspects. Remember that improvisation and business don’t go well together, and that is a principle to take throughout your entire entrepreneur journey.
How to build a reputation plan
When it comes to reputation management, a great way to guarantee its effectiveness is by employing the 3 main precepts of any good communication strategy: agility, transparency, communication, and measurement.
Your brand’s objectives and indicators of opportunity are determined in this section.
On the part of the objectives, you must specify what it is you want to create from your brand (for example, occupying the top positions in searches or accumulating a number of mentions), the product (increasing sales or subscriptions to your e-commerce) as well as the projection in external media.
Additionally, opportunity indicators are those that cover the behavior presented by users whenever they come into contact with your online presence. From here you can fine-tune the sales filters as well as the management of the offer by categories and targets.
Finally, consider what are the possible negative scenarios (mild, medium or severe) and the response patterns; as well as those who will be responsible for attending them.
Media reputation is the cornerstone of your business survival and you should treat it as such. The current dynamics of social networks and the appearance of influencers have caused a new profile of quality and closeness for companies.
Therefore, if seriousness and secrecy were previously considered attractive characteristics for big corporations, today users react positively to the demystification of their operations.
Don’t worry, this doesn’t mean showcasing absolutely everything that happens behind the scenes. Rather than that, the information you choose to share should always convey sincerity.
HubSpot claims that 58% of consumers discuss experiences with brands at least 90x per week.
An excellent example of this occurs when companies introduce their team members, and they have active social profiles. Such is the case of Richard Branson, who has a masterful handling of his image as an extension of the corporation he runs (Virgin Group).
However, I want to emphasize that transparency doesn’t only occur with the exterior. When it comes to startups and midsize companies, the entire team needs to command the same information. As a consequence, the efforts that exist by departments will be released in unison.
As we already clarified, the pace of Internet activity is too fast and full of potential customers eager to know whether your business is the right decision or not. Hence, from now on you will need to measure in each mention, conversation, and post involving the name of your brand.
You can divide the reactions by category:
- Emotion: The most common way to divide possible reactions based on emotion is to create a chart with 3 levels: positive, negative, and neutral.
- Classification: Depending on the stage the user is in, it can mainly be classified as a shopping experience, complaint, or question. Referrals also depend on the nature of your brand.
- Level: As you should already know, in addition to the previous points, there are different levels of impact, ranging from printing, commenting, subscription, or purchase.
This data must be reflected in a periodic report to closely monitor the evolution of your media reputation. You can rely on tools like Google Alerts, Klout, SEMrush, and Hootsuite to get more accurate clues and to facilitate the collection of information.
This section makes mention of the availability of channels to reflect the desired brand image and boost reputation, as well as the resources attached to the narrative. In other words: The chosen platforms used to drive and lead conversations between users (forums and social networks) and the repercussion on external authority media such as blogs and news portals.
To define which ones, keep in mind who your customers are. Even within your target audience, there are predominant behaviors according to population groups, preferred formats, and language. But above all this, you must make sure what the tone is since it must comply with the central message of the company.
As a result, users will notice that there is an interest in the company above the sale – and that is to provide a differential value. Even when it is the user himself who takes the initiative to reach out, there must be a supporting material backing up an immediate response. This way you will avoid future problems.
Having defined what are the universal objectives to apply to your positioning and public relations strategy, I can safely say: you are ready to take the first step into turning your brand into an online success.
On the other hand, one of the best ways to expand your knowledge, guarantee results, and speed up the process is to turn to the professionals. At Media Coverage we have a great team of experts ready to offer you a range of personalized alternatives (available in the “Pricing” section), which are specifically created to help boost your brand.
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