A reputation is not something that is built in seconds. However, it can be destroyed in that amount of time. Benjamin Franklin famously said, “It takes many good deeds to build a good reputation — and only one bad one to lose it.” Likewise, Warren Buffett noted, “It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it.” If you think about things from these points of view, you will do things differently in your daily life.
If you were to take these words to heart and do the best you can to make sure you are doing everything right on the internet, you could still slip up. It only takes one wrong tweet, a single mistimed Facebook post, or one negative review to bring your reputation to an abrupt end.
Is there anything you can do when this happens? Of course, there is.
First and foremost, you will want to own up to your mistake. Follow this with a heartfelt apology and initiate a plan that will prevent anything like this from happening again in the future. It will take a while to gain the trust of the public again. Over time, you will be able to start earning your reputation back.
During the rebuilding process, you are going to want to pay special attention to the following metrics. Doing so will enable you to monitor and adjust your approach to return your reputation to its former glory.
Conversion metrics is one of the most essential parts of every online reputation strategy. Below you will find the main conversion metrics that you should be paying attention to.
- Traffic – Your internet traffic should be coming from multiple locations. You will want to ensure that you have traffic from direct searches and referrals. Remember, with a tarnished reputation; you will have less referral traffic. Monitor this closely to confirm you are making a difference in your reputation.
- Unique Visitors – Every site dashboard will allow you to see if you have new (read the first time) visitors. You can see if these new visitors are browsing or converting.
- Returning Visitors – When you see returning visitors, you need to ask yourself why they returned to your website. Once you figure it out, duplicate this to your multiple channels in an attempt to drive others to your site in the same fashion.
- Interactions – Many third-party software applications will assist you in knowing what the customer is doing on your page. Evaluate their activities and make adjustments were necessary.
- Cost to Convert – A tarnished reputation can cause you to spend more to make a customer convert. Keep this in mind when you are discussing the profitability of a campaign.
- Bounce Rate – This is the rate in which people leave your site without any interaction. They could have heard of your negative reputation and stopped by to see if you are still in business. This information is obtained quickly, and they navigate away from your site.
- Exit Pages – Digging deeper into the customer experience will tell you exactly what page they were on when they moved on. Perhaps some work can be done to this page to keep them longer.
Social Media Activity
This does not mean how many interactions you have obtained on your latest Facebook post. This metric is more concerned with how much your audience has grown or decreased. This will tell you how much your audience is engaged with the content you are providing. A growing audience means your customers find your content worthy of passing on. With more eyes on your content, you have an increased opportunity of making more customers. Facebook Insights will assist you in assessing how engaged your followers are.
Once you have taken a more critical look at your analytics, you will be able to make better decisions on how you can quickly repair your reputation. Content is king. When you need more eyes on you, take extra care when creating your content to improve your online reputation.
If you are concerned about what people think about you, visit a review site. I am suggesting this because there are not as many people that leave reviews as there are on social media platforms. This may sound counterintuitive, but social media is kind of like a pile on. Meaning, one person has a bad experience, and others find little things to complain about.
With review sites, customers have to go into more detail to be recognized as truthful. The free sites will work as an overall average of how your customers see you. If you want to get to the real truth of it, you will need to visit the paid sites. Paid review sites are sort of like an exclusive club. They go the extra mile to assure that the customer leaving a review has interacted with the person or company they are reviewing. Free sites can be filled with fake reviews. This doesn’t happen as much with paid sites. Who is going to pay for the opportunity to post a fake review just for the sake of posting a fake review?
Autocomplete is commonly overlooked as a metric. Autocomplete tells you what people are frequently searching for. Start by typing your name (company or otherwise) into a Google search bar. Give it a few seconds and take note of what suggestions they offer. You will want to address any negative completions as quickly as possible. In a perfect scenario, you will see nothing negative an all positive. This will not usually be the case. However, if there is significantly more good than bad, you might be on your way to a repaired reputation.
There you have it. The key metrics that you should be paying attention to when you are attempting to repair your reputation. This is in no way a definitive list. There are many other metrics that you will want to pay attention to. However, there are no metrics that are more important than these. Fast online reputation repair will be decided by these metrics alone.