Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Save Your Reputation, Reputation Management

There are some pretty funny elements of reputation management. Reputation management is much like customer service; you could use some of the same tactics used in good customer relations. You need a good reputation so you deliver good service, right? Well, everyone else wants their customers to be happy too, right? Take some advice, if you find an article effecting the “reputation” of your company and the content is not true, simply ask the site which is hosting the article to take that information off. Hosting sites don't want a bunch of libel lies spun all over the place any more than you do; it's a liability. Some sites will actually take off the post in its entirety.

I would go about it by reading up on the terms of service of the hosting site; find out if they have an anti-defamatory clause in the terms of service. If they do, all you really need to do is send them the post with all the untruths highlighted and ask that those sections be removed on the grounds that they are libel and defamatory to your company or to yourself. So you know, libel is simply the written form of defamation, slander is the spoken form. Under that scenario, assuming the content is truly an untruth, the hosting company should remove it immediately.

Now, this idea won't work for everyone or for every site but it really is worth a try. You may be surprised at how willing social media sites are to take down any content which goes against their terms of service. However, be aware that some hosting sites will post your email on their site, for all to see. Knowing this, please write respectfully and only the facts; doing this will help save the reputation of your company.

Another thing you can do to counteract getting a negative reputation is to follow through with your promises. If the statements that are against your company are true, perhaps it's time to re-think your customer service strategy or even your marketing strategy. Do you have a customer service department? Are your customers' voices being heard? Put yourself in the shoes of your customer; would you be happy, would you be content, or would you be irate with your company too? If even you would be unhappy, perhaps it truly is time to rethink the way you run things.

Also, watch out for those kamikaze customers who are out to get you simply because they have some sort of personal vendetta against you, as a company or as a person. They're so into ruining your reputation that some of them don't even care about their own reputation. These are the irate customers who don't even want to be heard by you, they want to make a name for themselves and, therefore, do not wish to discuss anything in a calm and rational manor.

If you're the customer, call the company you have a problem with and ask to speak to a customer service representative. Simply explain, in a calm and rational manner, what's going on. If you truly are in the right, most companies will hear you and then either make amends for the wrong or come to a compromise with you.

You see, companies and customers need to realize that there is a happy medium between “the customer is always right” and “the company is always right”. Sometimes it's okay to come to a compromise; neither side has to surrender everything, roll over and say uncle. Believe me, there are easier ways of doing things. Please realize that business matters are delicate and that being calm and rational will substantially increases your chance of solving the problem.

No comments:

Post a Comment