Have you Googled the name of your company or brand recently? Online reputation management is becoming more complex for businesses today, and requires regular monitoring to ensure positive content appears in the search results, and conversations online are managed correctly.

Many companies are often surprised by what they discover online when searching for their company. Much of the information is published on independent websites and blogs. And with more and more people now active on social media, review sites and forums are being increasingly used by customers and competitors to make comments about a company’s products or services.

Businesses are catching on to the fact that they need some form of social media to represent themselves online. However, social media is taking a further shift – and it is important for businesses keep up, to maintain a competitive edge.

How companies view social media

The ‘Exploring Strategic Risk’ report, published by Deloitte and cited in Igniyte’s Guide to Building Your Company Reputation Online, states that half of the survey respondents were ‘active or extremely active users of social media’. Of these, 63% said that ‘confidentiality concerns’ were their ‘top risk’ when it came to social media.

Social media can have a ‘real and lasting’ impact on a company’s reputation. Organisations using social media to promote their business are potentially at risk of confidential, false or defamatory information being circulated online.

Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and LinkedIn tend to be the more popular mediums for executives and businesses. A few years ago, Facebook was the market leader both for younger generations and for executives of companies. But trends are changing.

According to an article in The Times, usage figures are falling “because Facebook has become unfashionable among younger users”. And, Forbes, quite reasonably, believes that 2015 will be the year that “LinkedIn will surpass Facebook for B2B marketing”.

Meanwhile, evidence from Ofcom suggests that younger generations are heading towards networks such as Instagram, Snapchat and WhatsApp..

Tweeting is popular but not everyone’s keen

According to an article in The Sunday Times, “only seven FTSE 100 chief executives are active on Twitter”. The article argues that this is likely to be a ‘generational matter’ – as most chief executives are over the age of 50.

However, this figure may be due to an element of caution too. Social media can have a lasting and real impact on a company’s reputation. With the ability to publish information online within seconds, businesses using social media to promote their business need to be thoughtful and have a strategy in place.

How Igniyte works with businesses

Protecting company reputation is difficult for any business facing negative content online. With more and more searches being made over the Internet, it is important to take steps to monitor what is being said about your business online. Popular review sites rank highly in Google, making their content very visible to customers and the general public.

Igniyte works with companies globally, supporting them to establish appropriate strategies designed to help them maintain and manage their social media profiles, and to implement effective social media customer response strategies. We work with you to establish a customer service channel that represent your business, as well as helping you to develop strategies to tailor your response to customers.

We work with businesses and brands to monitor search results for key terms. This process helps ensure that a company is presented fairly and accurately online. We also provide staff training so you can implement the process internally for the long term.

You can find out more by downloading our free Guide to Building Your Company Reputation Online or contact Simon on tel: +44 (0) 203 542 8689 or email [email protected]. All enquiries are dealt with in confidence.