As a business owner in the remodeling or building industry, a good reputation is a precious resource to have. By nature, your work is local, thus word of mouth advertising plays a big role in lead acquisitions: this is one reason why an established builder’s marketing budget is often 2-3% of their total revenue rather than the standard 6-15% in other businesses. Reputation is a powerful force that drives spending.

So, What Is Reputation Management?

In the digital age, reputation has become more complex than ever before. Think of someone thumbing through a physical copy of the yellow pages to look for a contractor. Now imagine a person Googling “contractors near me” and vetting companies based on multiple review sites, their website, and their social media presence. The rabbit hole of the internet can be bottomless depending on how deep of a dive the researcher wants to make. For some, curiosity reigns, and the unfolding nature of information on the internet is too much for them to resist. Next thing they know, they’re looking at a scanned copy of your high school transcripts and wondering where the past 2 hours of their life went. It happens to all of us at some point.

Here is some sound advice on what to do, and what not to do, in your reputation management strategy…   

Reputation Management Tactics to Implement

  • Cultivate a strong, consistent brand. Use a cohesive branding strategy across all platforms, especially online.
  • Have an authentic and well-managed social media presence. Social media is necessary. If you don’t have time to do social media yourself, have someone capable of accurately reflecting your brand do it for you.
  • Solicit reviews on multiple platforms from your clients. You may have to ask repeatedly, but if you keep providing links, and excellent customer service, you may get them!
  • Address negative reviews. We addressed this more in part 3 of this series.
  • Hire someone to manage your online presence and also train your staff to keep an eye out for inconsistencies or problems that need addressing.

Reputation Management Tactics to Avoid

Yellow warning sign on a fence stating : Fake Reviews
  • Do not pay for fake reviews. This is not an ethical or necessarily legal solution. There are companies that will post false positive reviews, sometimes even in an effort to “bury” a negative review, which is not the proper way to address a negative review.
  • Do not, and this should go without saying, leave false negative reviews for competitors, or pay someone to do such a dishonest deed. You may be asking, who on earth would do such a thing? It has been done.
  • Do not hire a company to delete negative online reviews or other online feedback. If you have integrity, this is not the route to take.
  • Do not pay for cheap, low-quality social media services. These services can provide quantity but generally not quality posts. Does the company providing those services accurately reflect your brand or your personality, or is it just an automated service? These types of shortcuts can ruin your brand’s authenticity.      

Stay tuned to our blog this month where we will release our series on reputation management: “Third-party Recognition: Reputation Management Part 2” and “Negative Reviews: How Do I Respond? Reputation Management Part 3”  

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