Your reputation is perhaps your greatest asset. Looking after your business reputation is paramount. Your business reputation is the most powerful leverage you have and should be built into your marketing strategy. Consumers place great importance on the perception of the company.
6 Ways to boost your reputation:
1. Get Involved with your Community.
This means to volunteer, attend events, join your local Chamber and other organizations and network, network, network!
2. Get Your Customers Talking.
You want customers, vendors, and competitors to say very nice things about you. Build relationships with other brands and businesses and refer customers.
In the movie “Miracle on 34 Street” Macy’s department store was first appalled that Santa was sending customers to other stores as they sought their treasures. When one customer, reported that she had never seen a department store refer someone to their competitor and how much the knowledge shared was appreciated and valued and that she would be a loyal Macy’s customer from now on. This is a classic example of good marketing and building good relationships not only with other brands but how it returned by building loyal customers who also marketing you through word of mouth to their family and friends.
3. Value Your Employees.
They are your ambassadors! Your employees are the people your customers interact with the most. When employees are treated well and valued, it helps build your brand reputation and your business culture which is a win/win as your employees will have longevity with the company and customers will see a good business culture with happy employees.
4. Admit When You Mess Up.
We are all human, we all make mistakes. Not only do we need to own a mistake, apologize for the error but you also need to empower your employees so they can correct the situation.
We have all experienced situations where a mistake was made and it is frustrating for customers when a company apologizes for the inconvenience but does not offer a solution to resolve the situation. You will gain loyal customers when you do all you can to present good solutions to errors.
5. Include Social Media
Do not ignore the online social media. Be sure to post regularly, respond to comments regularly (both positive and negative). Ask for customer reviews.
6. Go the Extra Mile!
Go the extra mile for both your customers and your employees. Great customer service is the best marketing tool.
There are so many things that can affect the reputation of your brand, so this is something to keep an eye on. It can take years to actually build up a positive brand reputation and only seconds to destroy it.