What to Do When Your Reputation Sucks

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Nowadays, it seems like any company can suffer from a PR nightmare, and the news spreads quickly on social media. If you’ve ever browsed the comments or replies for a famous brand on YouTube or Twitter, you know that users aren’t shy about calling out the company when they feel it’s warranted. 

Reputation management is essential for dealing with the pitfalls of the comments section and other public relations (PR) disasters. Big companies like Uber, Pepsi, and United Airlines have all suffered public relations (PR) disasters in recent years, with mixed results. 

Although negative publicity is never welcome, there are occasions when it cannot be prevented (well, in the case of the brands mentioned above, most of the nightmares could likely have been avoided). 

But if you’re a business still feeling the effects of a tarnished reputation, we’ve compiled a no-nonsense guide to the best methods for repairing your image. If you follow these suggestions, you may be able to lessen the blow.

Be Quick to Respond

Be ready to respond immediately, respectfully, and earnestly if criticism or a calamity hits. The damage to a company’s reputation during a crisis can be mitigated, according to the study’s authors, if steps are taken to address the problem and disseminate information as soon as feasible. 

Make a public statement addressing the issue as soon as you become aware of a news report or viral post that could damage your brand, and try to sound as genuine as possible. Insincere apologies are, after all, terrible.

Be Accountable

Oscar Munoz, CEO of United Airlines, had a lukewarm response to the dragged passenger incident. Combining business talk with an apparent lack of remorse generated criticism and damaged the company’s brand. 

Accept responsibility for your actions if you or your business have been the target of valid criticism. Describe the steps you will take to ensure this does not happen again.

Care for your SEO

To be successful in today’s internet world, search engine optimization (SEO) is required. Your Google Search results will become a cesspool of negative headlines if you have a scandal or send out poor communications. 

You don’t want your company’s name to be synonymous with phrases like “poor service” or “scam.” You may clean up your Google search results after a PR problem by producing new content. 

Create your blog or become a guest blogger on a well-known site and actively generate positive searchable material.

Take advantage of Google’s alert system.

Creating a Google Alert for your brand or company name is a good idea. You’ll get a notification in case you’re referenced, either positively or negatively. 

With this method, you may deal with problems as soon as they arise, preventing them from escalating further than necessary. It’s essential to take the time to show appreciation for excellent feedback and build rapport with your online reviewers. 

Responding to positive and negative feedback shows that your clients are a top priority and encourages further interactions.

Seek assistance

Those unsure how to handle a PR crisis should not feel bad about themselves. Since the Internet can subject brands to a proper (and often unnecessary!) lynching, it’s understandable that your emotions can get in the way of your capacity to respond pleasantly and professionally. 

Get a public relations professional involved if you are unsure how to handle the situation. While the expense is understandable, your brand’s reputation is invaluable and deserves your highest priority. 

Effectively managing a damaged reputation is crucial to maintaining your brand’s popularity over time. When purchasing from you, a consumer should feel confident in their decision. The advice given by the best ORM agency helps you prevent serious PR missteps.

Keep your body language in mind.

Body language conveys a great deal of information. Have your feet aimed at the people you’re speaking to and your body facing them. Constantly nod your head in agreement, lean into the other person at appropriate moments, and flash a smile.

Maintain coherence.

You won’t get anywhere by pretending to be someone you’re not. Regardless of whether you’re having a good or bad day, it would help if you still exhibited the same admirable attributes to everyone you come in contact with. 

Your reputation will suffer if you are outstanding in some situations but unpleasant, rude, or unfriendly in others. People are more likely to talk about a bad experience than a good one. In addition, their prevalence can increase rapidly.

Exhibit moral rectitude

This should serve as the basis for all your efforts. But especially in the corporate world, even seemingly insignificant acts of greed, selfishness, or jealousy can backfire and reveal your lack of integrity. 

Put yourself in the buyer’s shoes before you sell a transaction. It isn’t very ethical to say you’ll get back to someone at a particular time when you know you won’t be able to.

Act civically.

A community can be as tiny as an office or as large as a whole city. How invested you get depends entirely on the things you care about. To be actively involved, one must make themselves known, offer assistance, and make themselves available.

Maintain a positive reputation.

How genuine you are is strongly linked to how likable you are. Try to light up more faces, extend handshakes, and more congrats. 

Incorporating any or all of these strategies can boost your likeability. Being false is what people hate. Avoid compromising your integrity to gain popularity.

Conclusion:

As a result, it is essential to maintain a good name for yourself. A person’s reputation plays a significant role in their social and professional lives. Don’t give up hope if you haven’t built a stellar reputation for yourself yet. 

Recognizing that your reputation is flawed is the first step. The next step is to alter your public persona. Depending on the situation, this could necessitate a shift in attitude or demeanor. 

Apologizing can also refer to admitting guilt for one’s actions in the past. Though it may be difficult, remember that you are ultimately responsible for the reputation you create for yourself. Your status can rise with hard work and time.

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