The fifth law of power: Reputation is everything - guard it with your life.
Robert Greene - author of The 48 Laws of Power - no doubt had humans in mind when creating this law. Almost two decades after the book was published, the law holds true for businesses.
Whether you know it or not, your business already has a reputation. This how the public perceives all the aspects that make up your business, including quality of products and services, workplace culture, and organizational values and ethics.
With a negative brand reputation, your business will experience sluggish growth or even collapse. With a positive reputation, it will flourish and conquer the market.
Keep reading to learn more about reputation and why it's becoming increasingly important.
The Modern Consumer Is Evolving
The consumer of the past didn't really give a hoot about the reputation of a business when making a purchase decision. If a product or service met quality and price expectations, there was no second look at the company selling it. Just buy and go!
However, times are changing, technology is advancing and, consequently, the consumer is evolving.
Today's consumer wants to buy from an awesome or cool brand or one that matches their personal values. If a shopper deeply believes in climate change, for instance, they'll hunt for brands with a reputation for environmental friendliness.
As a business owner, you've to focus on building a brand that speaks to your target audience. If you don't you will miss out on the 67 percent of consumers who will make a first-time purchase from a brand only because they share similar values.
Your Competition Is Killing It
If your business is lagging behind its competitors, you're probably wondering what the owners are doing right.
You look at the products, yours are vastly superior. You compare the quality of customer service, yours appears superior. What's the differentiator? The answer could be brand reputation.
Entrepreneurs who invest in reputation management have greater control over what the public perceives of their brands. By engaging brand listening tools, for instance, they're able to monitor what people are saying about their brands on social media as well as on review sites such as Yelp, and take the necessary steps to address negative reviews or comments.
If you want your business to gain a competitive edge in your industry, you've no choice but to invest in reputation management.
Brand Reputation Is Good for SEO
If your business relies on SEO, building a positive online reputation can help you achieve a higher search ranking.
Here is how it works.
You embark on cultivating a good reputation for your brand. Gradually, your social presence grows. More people start searching for your brand on search engines, and others link back to your site from their sites. This results in a traffic surge to your site, with catches the attention of search engine algorithms.
Google, in particular, considers brands that attract lots of traffic and backlinks to be highly authoritative and rewards them with a higher SEO rank.
It takes years, money and patience to build a strong brand reputation. The Nikes, Coca-Colas, and Starbucks of this world are what they are today because of continuous investments in branding and reputation management.
If you want to leverage the power of brand reputation, you need to invest in reputation management services.
At iWerx Local, we're all about helping businesses grow and maintain a positive online reputation. Get in touch and let us help your business protect its reputation.