Building Your Online Reputation

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Consider the following scenario. You have set up your website, your blog has relevant content, your fanpage is up and running and you are tweeting away but your business is not experiencing a strong ROI. What is the problem? What are you doing wrong? Simply put, having all of the online pieces in place to optimize your business is great but your business still needs to incorporate the most important factor. That important factor is trust. How can your business build trust into your online business platform?

A simple but extremely effective way to build a positive online reputation is through recommendations. Customers will always do business with people they know, like and trust. Having positive customer recommendations on all of your online platforms is key. For example, LinkedIn provides a place where you can have a client or customer write a recommendation, stating publically that your business is one that others should work with. Facebook reviews on Facebook Fan Pages are also a great way to have your customers write short testimonials, giving your business an instant online boost of credibility. Once people see that your business is trustworthy, the chances of them wanting to give you business will increase. A second way of building a positive online reputation is through consistency.

Building your online reputation is very similar to building your brand. An important factor is consistency. Your customers and potential customers want to make sure that your business is not fly by night. One of the ways this foundation of consistency can be built is by generating a large amount of content. Where you choose to have your content is dependent on where your target demographic spends their time online. Content can be generated via blogs, YouTube videos, and Facebook status updates or by providing useful tweets on Twitter. While it may seem daunting to try to produce great content for all of these outlets, it is important to note that you don't have to be everywhere, just be consistent in whichever online platform you choose to update your content. This establishes a consistent pattern of connecting with your customers. They will appreciate your effort.

Building a positive online reputation does not happen overnight. As with all marketing efforts, using online platforms to reach and engage with current customers and potential customers takes time. Your businesses efforts to establish yourself as reliable, trustworthy and honest is well worth your time and energy. Your business will increase its natural circle of influence and gain a loyal following. This optimal goal will generate faithful customers and increase your bottom line. The perfect combination of patience, content and consistency will result in your business having a positive online reputation. Simply put, you are building relationships with your demographic in a new forum, but many of the same rules do apply.

Once these online relationships are started, they can be fostered. This is the process of gaining the trust of your followers and fan base. While not all of your followers will purchase a product, they do have influence over their friends and followers. Your businesses positive reputation will trickle down to a very large circle of influence. This is the ultimate goal.

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