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Online Brand Reputation
05/11/12


If you were put on the spot right now and asked about the reputation of your brand, what would you say? What does your online marketing and advertising tell your audience to say? What do you hope they would say? When is the last time you looked into the status of your brand?

 

If you’re curious about the condition of your brand’s reputation, here are four ways to monitor it. Each method can stand alone, but for the full picture of your online rep, implement as many as possible.

1. Check review sites

More and more consumers are turning to review sites both to research businesses and to share their thoughts of the businesses they have connected with in the past. MerchantCircle, Google Places, CitySearch, FourSquare, Yelp! and many more sites are broad review sites that have become very popular. There are also a myriad of popular, industry specific sites that can shed some light on what consumers think of your brand.

2. Google your brand

Are people writing in their blog about you? Did a news company do a special article on one of your executive employees? You’ll be surprised at what comes up in a simple Google search.

3. Review your analytics

Whether you use Google Analytics, Crazyegg, Compete, or another service to measure the success of your website, check it often. If your online marketing is working you should see an increase in traffic. Are more people being referred to your site via your social profiles? Have your SEO efforts been successful?

 

If you have a less than ideal reputation your traffic will show decline. If there are any abnormal dips or peaks, compare it to significant events at your company (use advance search on Google to narrow your search down to a specific time frame for better insight).

4. Utilize management tools

There are several great online reputation management tools available, both free and paid. Two of the best free options are Google Alerts and Social Mention. Google Alerts allows you to set up keyword-triggered notifications. For example, if you use your brand as one of the keywords, anytime your brand name is mentioned you will receive a notification and you can make sure it is a positive mention (or you can promptly address it if it happens to be negative). Social Mention works in a similar way, but gives you a better look at what is being said on social media networks.

 

Once you review your online reputation, how does it compare with what you originally thought? How’s your brand doing online? What do consumers think about you?

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