The Power of Online Reputation

A company’s reputation is extremely important for its success. In the digital age, it’s even more critical. With consumers relying heavily on the Internet to make purchasing decisions, a company’s online reputation has an immense influence and can make or break its success. Effective online reputation management is essential to earning and maintaining consumer trust.

Consumers rely heavily on online reviews, social media discussions, and other online sources to learn about companies and their products or services. The decision to purchase a product or service is increasingly influenced by a company’s online reputation. A positive online reputation can build trust and ensure that customers choose a particular company. However, a negative online reputation can damage a company’s reputation to the point where potential customers are discouraged from making a purchase.

For these reasons, it is essential for companies to monitor their online reputation. Change is constant, especially in the online world. Companies need to be able to correctly identify what is being written about them online and how they can improve if people perceive them negatively.

Online Reputation Management

Online Reputation Management (ORM) is the process of monitoring, influencing, and controlling the portrayal of a brand, individual, or organization on the Internet. It helps to shape public opinion about a company and its products and services.

  • Build trust and credibility: Online reputation can lead to increased trust and credibility with the target audience.
  • Increase brand awareness: Online presence can be enhanced and more people will be attracted.
  • Improve search engine rankings: Online reputation is one of the most important factors for search engines like Google, etc.
  • Enhance customer relationships: It improves a company’s customer relationship management by strengthening customer interactions and increasing their loyalty.
  • Protect your reputation: Online reputation management is essential for protection. Negative comments or reviews can damage a company’s reputation and influence other customers.
  • Crisis management: A skillful crisis response can help to regain customer trust and protect the reputation.
  • Competitive advantage: By effectively managing online reputation, a company can differentiate itself from the competition.

The effect of social media

Social media platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and, most recently, TikTok have changed the way people communicate and make decisions. As consumer interactions have increased, so have the challenges companies face in managing their reputations.

People leave ratings, reviews, or comments on social media. These can be positive or negative. In general, customer feedback is key to a company’s success. Surprisingly, nearly 80% of people read online reviews to learn about a company. This fact underscores the importance of companies having a strong online reputation. In addition, about half of all people consider feedback from other people to be as trustworthy as recommendations from friends or family.

Reasons why customers follow a brand on social media:

Whether we want to admit it or not, people talk to each other, about each other, and about companies. This does not necessarily have to be negative. Word of mouth (WOM) spreads quickly and can be used as a marketing tool. The more interactions about your business, the greater the chances of attracting new customers or followers. The positive impact of WOM should not be underestimated. Word of mouth is a not-so-hidden advertising power. This also applies to the negative effects.

Reviews, whether positive or negative, influence customers’ attitudes toward businesses. Surprisingly, people tend to weigh negative reviews more heavily than positive ones. As a result, negative word-of-mouth communication is perceived as more informative.

How to build online reputation using social media?

Reputation management is more important today than ever before. Companies need to find out what people think about them. Social media is a great way to find out if customers are happy or unhappy. It is usually enough to read the online reviews or comments. However, to build a strong online reputation, you should also respond to them. That way, any questions can be answered. From complaints to compliments, proactive and positive responses to comments are opportunities to make a good impression.

Furthermore, customer feedback should always be personalized and never generalized. In addition, it should always be followed by a « thank you » and, if necessary, an apology. However, social media remains a big challenge because everyone has access to it. But companies can benefit and learn from it. It is important to listen, draw the right conclusions and make changes to strengthen your online reputation.

Internet Sources:

Hossein Shad Manaman, Shahram Jamali, Abolfazl AleAhmad,
Online reputation measurement of companies based on user-generated content in online social networks, Computers in Human Behavior, Volume 54, 2016, Pages 94-100, ISSN 0747-5632,
Stenger, Thomas. (2014). Social Media and Online Reputation Management as Practice: First Steps Towards Social CRM?. International Journal of Technology and Human Interaction. 10. 49-64. DOI: 10.4018/ijthi.2014100104.
Luethi, Anja P ., « Effects of Negative Online Word-of-Mouth on Consumer Evaluations of an Underdog Brand » (2016). Senior Honors Theses. 81.

Author: Gabriel Deppeler




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