Infographic: 4 Easy Steps to Get Started With Online Reputation Management
With the rise of social media, brands have had to change the way they manage their reputation online. Billions of messages and articles are shared on the web every day, which makes it very difficult to listen to what is being said about your brand. How do you sort through the social noise and identify relevant discussions about your company, products or services?
Here’s a WHY/WHAT/HOW/WHERE roadmap to start monitoring your brand image online and on social networks.
WHY – Listen to the Consumers That Are Defining Your Brand Image
Did you know that 86% of people will hesitate to purchase products or services from a business that has negative online reviews? These reviews can take several forms, from a negative message on a forum to an incendiary tweet.
Consumer discussions play at least as much of a role in defining your brand as your own promotional efforts. It is therefore critical for you to be able to monitor what is being said on different online channels to better understand the way your brand is perceived as well as to identify obstacles and opportunities to further business development.
WHAT - Make Sure Your Search Query is Bullet-Proof
In the end, effective brand listening comes down to a single question: how many brand mentions am I missing every month? If you’re doing your job correctly, the answer should virtually be zero. No matter the type of monitoring tool you’re using, it all starts with a solid search query.
Just like a regular Google search, the first step is to enter what you are looking for. And when it comes to monitoring what’s being said about your brand, product or services, you have to make sure not to forget anything.
It begins with the simplest things. Let’s suppose for example that you are working for Bacardi and that you forgot to include the term “BaCCardi” in your search query.
These two Instagram posts do mention the brand Bacardi, but might be missed because of an easy-to-make spelling mistake.
You would miss hundreds of relevant brand mentions every month, including from prominent media, such as the German newspaper Die Welt.
I personally have to deal with this every day on social media – Talkwalker is regularly spelled Talk Walker, Talkwalkers, Talkwater or even Talkwaller!
Here are a few things you should keep in mind when building a search query:
- Your brand name in all shapes (including the name of your social media accounts, nicknames, former brand names and any misspellings)
- The names of your top managers/decision makers (CEO, CMO, etc)
- Your brand slogan
- The names of your star products and services
- Your campaign hashtags and slogans
Tip: to get more out of your search queries, learn about the best Boolean operators.
Bonus – Have you thought of visual brand mentions?
In the era of visually-oriented social networks such as Instagram, Pinterest and of course Snapchat, billions of images are posted online and on social networks every day. Guess what? Your brand logo is present in several of them.
In some cases, you’ll get lucky and find a mention of your brand in the companion text. But what happens where there is none? How do you identify fraudulent use of your brand logo? How do you detect great user-generated content?
Traditional social listening platforms will miss this type of brand mentions, and this is why businesses are increasingly relying on image recognition technology to detect their brand logo.
This innovative technology will play a growing role in helping you understand your brand perception online and on social networks. For example, here’s something interesting we found out when searching for the Stella Artois logo in images: their beer apparently goes great with cigars!
HOW - Filter Through the Noise
Given that over 1.9 billion people use social media on a regular basis, it doesn’t matter how great your search query or listening platform is: there will always be irrelevant or unnecessary data that gets through the filters.
So how do you get rid of this noise?
First, sort through your results and identify unrelated content. If you were the hotel brand Hilton, for example, you would probably have to exclude from all search results the term “Paris Hilton”.
Some monitoring tools also offer you the option to rule out content based on a recurrent pattern (we call this rule based tagging). Once you have identified a systematic pattern, this functionality will allow you to instantly get rid of the junk and improve the quality of your results.
Depending on your interests or business goals, you should also set personalized filters to bring up the most relevant results for the different aspects of your brand.
Here are a few examples of personalized filters you can create to better understand your brand reputation online and on social networks:
- By country
- By language
- By type of services (e.g. for a hotel chain, filters to identify messages linked to the food, to the room, to the amenities, to the overall price of the experience, etc.)
- By star products
- By controversial topics within the industry
WHERE - Pick Your Search Tool
Another decision you’re going to have to make when trying to monitor your brand reputation online is where you will be looking in terms of sources and regional coverage.
Do you want to listen to what is being said on social networks only? Do you want to track press mentions? Also, is there a specific market you want to focus on?
A Google search, for example, will not be able to provide you with results from most social networks, such as Facebook or Twitter. No matter the monitoring tool you will be using, you need to think in terms of sources and global coverage.
Here are some categories of tools you can use for your brand reputation management:
- Search engines such as Google, Bing, Baidu, Duck Duck Go or even Qwant;
- Alert tools that will collect brand mentions all over the web and send them to your mailbox;
- Social listening platforms, which crawl data across a variety of sources, provide you with strategic insights, and allow you to create comprehensive reports and alerts on your online brand image.
All these categories have different restrictions in terms of coverage, analytics and reporting options.
Brand Listening 2.0: Take Action
At this point, you have collected a fair amount of information about your brand and the ways your customers and the general public discuss it on the web. Yet social listening can offer you much more than just monitoring the reputation of your brand online and on social networks.
The next step is to set your wider goals. Do you want to listen in to your competition and identify best practices? Find new ways to engage with your customers? Social media allows you to do all of this and more.
Here are a few ideas and resources:
- Online reputation: with the help of sentiment analysis, identify peaks in positive & negative brand mentions to better understand brand perception and identify developing problems.
- Customer service: find new and better ways to interact with your customers
- Competitive intelligence: you’re not alone, compare your brand presence and perception to competitors to benchmark performance and identify best practices
- Product Research: determine which characteristics of star products customers like or dislike
- Crisis identification or management: identify the early symptoms of a crisis and focus your efforts on the right target to prevent its spread.
These are just a few examples of the ways social listening can help advance your business. Want a personalized demo? Contact us to set up a meeting with one of our experts.