If you’ve ever experienced the wrath of an angry customer, or been the target of bad press or a dishonest competitor who has left a scathing review of your product or service, you know how easy it is to lose your reputation. A good reputation is the very thing on which most of us have built our business success.
What can you do to counteract the damage of bad press?
According to an article in The Sydney Morning Herald, there are “seven secrets” you must implement.
1. Know your enemy
Identify and list all negative feedback your business has received.
2. Think pictures
Post pictures and videos on sites like Flickr and Youtube. Include positive keywords in the description. Comment on your posts, again employing strategic keywords.
3. Blog vigorously
Write blogs featuring your chosen keywords. Build rapport with other bloggers in your niche. Be sincere.
4. Ping the changes
“Ping” your blog posts using services like ping-o-matic.
5. Link strategically
Link to popular websites from your blog.
6. Move on
Don’t dwell on the bad reviews.
7. All together now
Recruit others in your company and professional network to apply these same strategies, share positive reviews and comment on successes and wins you have achieved for them.
A few extra items you may wish to consider in negating bad press are:
8. Respond with courtesy
Be prepared to do anything in your power to make up for your customer’s bad experience. It is better to admit your mistake or negligence and apologise, than be proud or arrogant in business.
Most people will forgive you for being human and others reading may form their opinion about you based not only on the negative review or press but also on how you handled yourself and responded in crisis.
9. Review your processes
Are your operations letting you down? Identify any faults in your processes and procedures that make negative reviews less likely. Determine methods to improve or change the way you do business for better customer satisfaction outcomes.
10. Educate and role play
Educate your staff to understand your sales ethos, and after-sales service. Role play different scenarios of good and bad service and practice different responses.
Likewise with bad press, learn your personal response to challenging situations or media bullying by heart. Train your emotions to be in control and test your likely public responses by modelling them internally.
The SMH article gives a general broad view of how to hide bad press with good press. If your negative feedback, review or press has reached this stage, then yes, positive online activity is your counter-activity.
Before it gets to this stage, however, preventative measures are needed.
We are all human, but when we are in business or in the public limelight, we need to ensure our scruples are less publicly visible and our humanness is in our control.
Making mistakes is a natural phenomena. How we respond and react—or retaliate—determines the quality of our reputation.
Check it out here: How to push bad press off Google’s front page