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Social Media Marketing (SMM)

Online Reputation Management – Is There A Downside?


Two decades ago an executive made the wrong comment or took the wrong stand in a certain business situation. That comment caused havoc at the company causing them substantial revenue loss and issues resulting with their branded image. They spent years regretting what was said. Needless to say, it cost the company a huge amount of revenue and the executive also lost his job. Then in 2008, this executive found another promising position, until a coworker dug up his past on Google. The job ended immediately.

An associate lost a business negotiation worth hundreds of thousands of dollars because, the corresponding company executives ran a Google search on him and found a listed article with disparaging remarks about his business. In just a few hours the deal went sour, all because of the false comments made in the article written more than a few years ago.

What is the Underlying Commonality in These Situations?

In both cases, neither the executive nor the business owner took a proactive stance in managing their online reputation. To the contrary, they ignored it believing it would not affect their future. In the first case legal documentation from 20 years ago somehow appeared in public online records, and in the second the business owner made no response to hearsay or the referencing of the business in a negative way.

What is the Issue?

When prospective associates, readers or employers read this information, they automatically take it as being from an authoritative source. This causes them to make a decision about your reliability, authority and experience instantaneously and unfortunately, in most cases this could have the least favorable result for you.

New Strategies Created by Online Reputation Management Services

If you haven’t been around the online world for long or haven’t been paying much attention then you probably aren’t aware of the recent online reputation news, where online marketing gurus stress the need to control this negative information. New strategies have developed allowing professional online reputation management teams to help businesses, and individuals control the effects derogatory comments, fraudulent information, or historical events have on current business and professional activities. These strategies include the following practices.

1. The monitoring of one’s online reputation on a regular basis, through both manual and automatic processes like those offered by Google Alerts.

2. The releasing of positive information about a person or company to compensate for any negative information, whether anonymous or not.

3. The integration of positive SEO processes that can get a company, or person on a first page Google search engine index page, but with information that places the person or company in a favorable light.

Bottom Line

Businesses and executives are finding that online reputation management is a crucial element in their operations. It may not affect the day to day operating of a business or the professional career of an executive, but on the day that it does, there are serious consequences that could result in substantial revenue loss.

About the author


Vikram is a Digital Media Strategy Consultant who helps small business owners grow their
business. He is passionate about blogging, digital marketing, and emerging technologies.

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