What is ORM again?
ORM involves creating new content online that pushes old or negative content lower in search engine results pages. It involves developing, managing and repairing digital profiles of businesses (and individuals); creating fresh content for search results.
It is Public Relations for the digital age.
Contrary to popular belief, it is NOT a magic spell that will make negative content about you vanish into thin air.
Can I do Reputation Management myself?
Of course you can. There is plenty you can do yourself without much help. That’s why PurpleClick has pooled its wisdom to create the list below to help you to take ownership of whatever information about your business (or yourself) that appears online.
Step 1: Search Yourself
Do a Google search for your business name (or your full name in quotes). Count the number of negative listings that appear. Be sure to look into Google Images tab. Someone can read into the equivalent of a 1,000 words with one offending photo. You can even set up a Google alert on the preferred keyword you want to keep tabs on new content. Google will then send email notifications to you in the form of a digest.
Pro Tip: How to set up Google Alerts?
Step 2: Do some PR. Ask nicely.
Write to the person or company who has posted the negative article about you. Be nice and polite when explaining your situations, and ask if they would consider removing the unwanted piece. Never fire back (or threaten to sue) as that could backfire.
Your Customers' Response:
Pro Tip: As a rule of thumb, put yourself in the shoes of the person you are reaching out to. Will you feel better after reading the response? If the answer is no, don’t send it!
Step 3: Take Formal Action
Legal action is only a possibility, if the content is abusive or violates state law. You can contact Google to submit a legal removal request.
Pro Tip: Before doing so, do read Google’s policies to see if the material in question is even considered inappropriate. If not, any submission will be futile.
Step 4: Create unique content to displace the bad ones
Assuming the negative listing cannot be removed, it must be pushed back in the search results instead. The challenge, however, is creating content that search engines will rank higher. By design, new content does not automatically appear at the top of search results. Creating content will therefore involve understanding how the search engine algorithm ranks content and attempt to create content that will be favoured.
Pro Tip: Create your own unique content to push offending ones down. Hear advice on great content from the experts
Step 5: Get a handle of your Social Media accounts
Even if you don’t feel like you have time to be active on these sites, do take the time to get at least a few profiles. Facebook, Instagram and Twitter are the common ones but If you can make the time, also create YouTube and Pinterest. You don’t have to be actively managing the account but don’t leave them completely dormant either.
Plan ahead to add new content at least once a month. That can be as simple as sharing an article from other popular sites relevant to you or your business and writing a short comment on why it is interesting.
Step 6: Take charge of your reputation
There are times things just screw up. It happens. But you can also see it as an opportunity: if you do the right thing to recover from the mistake, you can actually build a stronger relationship with the customer than you had before.
Case Study: Singtel
Singtel famously took charge of their reputation in December 2016 when its subscribers took to Facebook to rant about the disruption in internet services.
Instead of replying with a mundane, template type reply, Singtel decided to rhyme a few lines and reply in the spirit of things.
Suffice to say, the customer was satisfied with the response that had some thought, and that generated positive engagement all around for Singtel (despite the service disruption just a few days before).
Obviously not everyone is a lyrical genius like Singtel but here’s our tip to address one-off bad reviews online...
- Be Empathetic, apologetic and genuine in wanting to make the upset customer happy.
- Ask what you can do to make it up to the customer.
- Offer solutions and reassure that the focus is on fixing the process.
- Thank them for the feedback.
We hope this self-help guide to ORM has allowed you to understand your needs better. Come back to our Blog next week, and we will provide several tips you can use to evaluate the best ORM firm for your needs.
Don’t have much time to do it yourself?
PurpleClick uses a method of SEO to try and give maximum control possible over as much information available about you online--whether it is information you want others to see or no one should see.