Managing an online reputation is vital for any modern business. Companies of all sizes need to ensure they’re promoting a positive and professional profile – and avoid potential damage to their brands. Establishing yourself as an expert in your field is an effective way to enhance your reputation, but it can involve a lot of hard work. Here are five tips to getting started.
1. Be active on social media
A strong media presence is an important element to get right. Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and LinkedIn are the usual suspects in a lot of countries, and you could be forgiven to think that at least one of them, especially Facebook, would be the most popular in every country. This, however, is not the case.QZone is still the most popular in China, Zing is the most popular social network in Vietnam and Drauglem remains number one in Latvia. Similarly, VKontakte and Odnoklassniki are massive in Russia, while Cyworld is popular in Korea. You will want to study the chosen platforms of your customers and use them in a professional manner.For example, it won’t matter if you have a world class web design business that is ideal for China if you appear amateurish in your social networking communications on QZone.
Once you have identified the ideal platform, you’ll need to know the best way to communicate with its users. Cultures differ around the world, and as a result, online behavior in what is acceptable will also differ. You don’t want to appear to be aggressively pushing your business in cultures that will find it intrusive. If you get it right, you’ll be able to communicate with your customers in a more personable way.
You should also keep your language simple and accessible in order it doesn’t get confused when translated. You don’t have to translate your content if you are just keeping within English speaking countries, or countries that are predominantly fluent in English. However, you’ll not to avoid local colloquialisms. It’s not a necessity to completely internationalize your content at every turn, but it must be in tune with a wider audience.
Localizing your communications, whether it’s having a localized website or social network interaction, is a better way to interact within a foreign market.This way you can communicate directly to people of a specific nation or language. There are many free online translation sites, such as Google Translate and TransPerfect, but they only give a direct translation, which, if wrong, can damage your online reputation. Errors in language will be glaringly obvious to native speakers, and it will turn them away.You’ll have to make sure your communication is as clear as it would be in English. The best way to do this is by using a professional translator that is native to the country you are localizing to.
4. Be proactive
Don’t let your social network profiles stagnate. Keep active and engage in conversation. Respond to inquiries and stay involved. If you ignore customers, they’ll ignore you. Managing an online reputation across the world may sounds like a lot of work and perhaps overwhelming. It might seem easier to just ignore customers and keep your interaction at a minimum level. However, ifyou don’t monitor and respond to questions or negative feedback, you’ll suffer the repercussions.
Aim to encourage customers to review your business and leave feedback, regardless of what field you’re in. If you get positive reviews, your reputation will be enhanced. If you get negative feedback, you should use it to improve your business and make any necessary changes.