Measures for Online Reputation Management
In general, existing or new positive content can be used to displace negative content. These positive contents can be created and placed on the web using proven measures. The three most important ones are:
1. Press releases and interviews
One should never underestimate the classic PR tools. Even today they can be useful – if prepared correctly. A press release could be written that represents a counter position to the risk and thus tries to override it. This text should not only be placed on your own website and your own social channels, but also on topic-relevant sites – for example topic portals, specialist media or specialist blogs. An interview with the management can appear authentic and credible. Such statements can be spread not only in the own channels. In the case of topics that affect a broader public, the media often pick up on such content in their reporting.
2. Social web
The best digital communication channels to use during a crisis are your own social media channels. Of course they are the first port of call for criticism and negative comments from the target group. But your own channel offers the opportunity to take a stand and use the reach possibilities of social networks to spread your message digitally. You have to think carefully about what content is created and distributed. The “added value” or benefit for the target group should not be underestimated even in times of crisis.
3. SEO measures
Many agencies that specialize in online reputation management offer potential clients the opportunity to push negative content out of search engine rankings. Onpage and Offpage measures are intended to help here. The onpage method still seems logical (to me). Here, the goal is to optimize the company website so that search engines classify the page and its contents as relevant. Contents with a clear added value for the own target group are known to achieve a better ranking on Google. However, I question the Offpage method. Here the aim is to generate as many backlinks as possible for your own website. A method that may have seemed legitimate in the early days of online marketing, but today can have a negative impact on your own search engine ranking. Both the SEO services offered by agencies and the methods themselves should be viewed critically.
Conclusion: One for communication - all for risk management
Reputation risk management is the task of the entire company, including online PR. Defending against risks and actively maintaining a company’s good reputation is a major challenge, especially in the digital sector. A cross-departmental team is needed to take over the management for the entire company.
No company divisions or individual departments are up to this task alone. Although communication and PR are important elements of reputation management, they can only convey what is done and change in the company. They are part of a holistic strategy that must be developed as part of reputation risk management.