Small Business Owner’s Introduction to Online Reputation Management

I know what you are thinking – Online Reputation Management (ORP)? Yet another foreign concept you need to learn in this fast moving world where business and the Internet is increasingly done in tandem. Learn about online marketing in orange county

The words may appear unfamiliar but reputation management has actually been around as a PR term. It is defined as the practice of (1) building a brand’s reputation (2) shaping/maintaining a brand’s positive reputation and (3) minimizing a brand’s negative reputation.

Reputation management used to only be relevant to multinational brands in the tri-media space (TV, radio and print). But in the age of the Google and social media, small business owners can no longer ignore the need to protect and maintain their brands within their audience scope.

Let me skip to an example that hits home to many entrepreneurs: When you google your company name, what shows up on the first page of results? Take a moment to do this.

Does your website show up on the first page of Google results? Does a different page show up altogether? Do bad reviews of your product or service come up on search results?

You may not be a huge business known cross-country, but in a business scenario where an overwhelming 73% of the people looking to make a local purchase research online before proceeding to purchase, traditional limitations no longer matter.

Taking control of your online reputation should now become your top concern.

If search results of your brand on Google was less than stellar (for example: search keywords don’t bring the audience to your website, or an unfairly negative user review of your company is visible high up on the search results), take comfort in the fact that there are easy ways to manage your online reputation. Below are two basic methods you need to know as you begin:

Blog often!

If your current website is little more than an online version of your brochure, begin to compose your company blog. How does a blog help? Firstly, a blog is a venue to generate fresh content for your site. The more you post on a regular basis, the higher the likelihood that your community gets bombarded with new information closely related to your business terms. Maintaining a regular blog (go for at least one entry every two weeks) will help keep search results on Google and other engines feature new products and services. It will also help flush down negative results (such as bad reviews) as time passes and readers click on fresh news and forget about the old ones.

Defend Your Brand w/Social Media

Social media is one other great way to manage your online reputation. I will talk specifically about Facebook in this post since this is the favorite among majority of your client base. Before implementing your rep management campaign, let me first point out the obvious: your number of social media subscribers will work like a charm only if you have a high subscriber base. Mass membership is key for showcasing your reputation to a big audience. This means that you must have a big-enough subscriber base to before you go about posting content to bolster your online reputation. Having said that, you have to work on coming up with fresh content for your Facebook page to help your audience warm up to the idea of your brand. In much the same way that writing good blog content improves your search rankings, constantly posting product information on you FB page will help a lot towards pushing for better keyword search engine results. Social media networks like Facebook provide a means for increasing the speed at which good news is spread, only because liking and sharing content requires little effort.

Video is the way to go.

Creating and maintaining a video channel, specifically on youtube will help a great deal with your online reputation. Video is far more easy for end-users to consume. At the same time, video content is easy to produce these days. A beginner business owner can do a low-resolution video of his wares using a basic phone camera and upload the file to youtube in minutes. It’s simple yet effective. Populate your video channel with new product information, quick reviews, demonstrations or testimonials. Fancy effects are not required. The important thing is to showcase videos that speak to your customer’s wants and it will be sure to generate hits.

Google has already established the practice of showing top videos on first page of search results. Your customers, will most likely click and view a video compared to text-based search content.

These two are just the tip of the iceberg in the increasingly progressing world of online reputation management. I will take up more ORP tools that can directly improve the way you manage your brand. ORP tools are not created equal, and I will cover only the ones that fit best into the special needs of entrepreneurs.

Reference links:
http://whatis.techtarget.com/definition/reputation-management
http://smallbusinessmavericks.com/online-reputation-management.htm
http://www.flyte.biz/resources/newsletters/09/04-online-reputation-management.php
http://outspokenmedia.com/guides/orm-guide/

There’s no need to fear – Bliss Drive can help you navigate the world of ORP. Call us for a free consultation via (949) 229-3454 – we’d be happy to let you know how you can leverage your online brand in these modern times.

The Power of YouTube for a Local Business

Most people associate YouTube with “the” place where you can watch a variety of different videos. Video marketing in Irvine, CA has changed the way local businesses advertise and sell their brand on the Internet. It has videos on almost anything you may be interested in, whether it is celebrities, music, how to videos, product reviews or even silly videos. But the power of YouTube extends far beyond this.

YouTube can help you promote your local businesses. It has the huge power of spreading the word about your website, service or product. You will be making a big mistake if you underestimate this power and fail to capitalize on this capability of YouTube.

A Site with Huge Popularity

Audio visual medium has always attracted viewers and YouTube is one of the most popular audio visual mediums having millions of users. It is widely popular among local businesses and they are actively using it to reach out to their target market and to increase their traffic. YouTube channels are just like your personal TV stations. Here you can broadcast to the world about your local business.

Do not be far behind your competition. Create your own channel and upload your videos in YouTube and share it with the viewers.  The process of uploading is extremely simple.

Power of YouTube

Believe it, Youtube is a great medium for demos, product launches, interviews, public relation communications, tutorials, advertisements and much more. YouTube offers a place where you can store all your video files and provide backlinks from your blog, website and social media sites. This can improve the SEO ranking of your business as it enables you to tag each of your videos with target keywords. This way you will have viewers who will subscribe to your video channel and thus increase the base of your local fans.

Drives Awareness

YouTube improves awareness among your target customers as well. It gets a huge traffic, even without the help of Google. If YouTube had been a standalone search engine, it would certainly have been the second largest search engine in terms of traffic. With millions of Americans watching a huge amount of videos every month, having a YouTube channel for your business is a useful way to increase your brand awareness.

Optimize Your Videos for Search

With the monthly viewership of over 20 million and literally millions of videos available, it is quite possible that you may be lost in the crowd. Work seriously on making your company’s videos rise to the top and rank high on the search engine. This can only influence viewers to watch your video and know about your products or services.

Be creative and make an engaging video, select the keywords carefully, ensure that the videos direct viewers to your site and actively participate in YouTube community. These will help you get noticed in YouTube.

If you need help on Orange County internet marketing to maximize your local business using YouTube, call Bliss Drive today at (949) 229-3454.