Reputation Management

Online Reputation Book Review: Repped by Andy Beal

Online Reputation BookMany years ago when the role of search in brand reputation was really coming into it’s own, Public Relations and SEO were becoming unlikely partners as way to position positive messages about brands and individuals in search results. The combination of Search and PR was actually the genesis of TopRank Marketing.

As Google became a powerful reputation engine, the need for individuals and brands to monitor and manage their online reputations increased too.

Today, with billions of internet users empowered to post content anytime, anywhere, the articles and presentations we originally published on Online Reputation Management (ORM) are even more important today. And yet there are thousands of brands and even more individuals that are oblivious and in dire need of ORM.

How to Maintain Your Reputation During a Social Media Crisis

social media crisisIn our digitally-driven age, most companies will eventually encounter a social media-driven crisis. Perhaps an employee accidentally tweets an insensitive remark on the company account, or the business is suddenly caught in a whirlwind of negative commentary on Facebook. Whatever the case, you need to be prepared for any blowback that might occur – and it likely won’t be comforting.

Whether the crisis was instigated internally or externally, it’s important to develop a social media crisis plan before engaging with your communities.

Here are six tactics to help manage a social media crisis:

1. Establish Social Media Crisis Guidelines

7 Ways to Improve Your Online Reputation Management Strategy

Effectively Manage Your Online Reputation

Is your reputation management strategy a turn off to your customers and critics?

Should we respond, get angry, fire back, ignore the situation, censor comments, or just see what happens?  Those are some of the many questions that marketers are faced with today.  With more and more consumers and customers turning online to share what they think of a particular brand or company it has become increasingly difficult to capture everything that is being shared.

In April of this year reached 50 million users with over 17 million reviews on their database.  If you are a professional responsible for online reputation management it makes you wonder how many other means are there for your customers and critics to share their opinion about your company.

2010 LeadingRE Conference: TopRank Digital Marketing Sessions

Last week, I was in Las Vegas for the LeadingRE annual conference and marketing technology event speaking on social media and SEO strategies for real estate professionals. It’s always interesting to see where different verticals are at with their willingness to embrace social channels, and I’m pleased to report the top realtors globally are already engaging, or at the least starting to define their path.

I gave the opening presentation to the MarTech part of the conference – a track of panels/sessions designed to help real estate professionals better integrate their marketing initiates with technology. Additionally, I spoke on two panels in the general sessions of the conference: one on online reputation management and one as an open panel Q&A answering marketing strategy questions.

Reputation Management for Affiliate Marketing

Digital Reputation ManagementOne of the best examples of the convergence happening between search engine optimization, social media and digital public relations is online reputation management. This is a topic very close to home not only because our marketing agency emphasizes these practice areas, but because the need for brand and reputation management continues to increase in importance as consumer time spent on the social web replaces traditional media.

Recently I presented on a panel at Affiliate Summit West on the topic of online brand management and it was eye opening for many merchants and networks what goes into a good brand monitoring program. Companies spend huge budgets, time and resources building their brands and reputation. Not paying attention to that investment can be disastrous.

Online Reputation Management for Direct Marketers – ACCM 2008

Lee Odden Rob Key
Lee and Rob at PRSA International 2007

On the marketing conference circuit, online reputation management is a hot topic now more then ever. Whether it’s search marketing, public relations or direct marketing, companies are trying to make sense of how to monitor and manage the brand impact of online conversations and their visibility in search results.

Last Thursday I did a national PRSA teleseminar with Kami Watson Huyse, “Reputation Management in a Google World” and tomorrow in Orlando, Florida the DMA’s ACCM conference is hosting: “Reputation Management: Protecting Your Brand in the Search Engines“, a session with myself and Rob Key of Converseon presenting. Moderater duties will be handled by Heather Lloyd Martin of SuccessWorks.

How Many Conferences Can You Attend in 30 Days?


Conferences are a big part of TopRank’s marketing and content promotion strategy and it looks like a busy summer is ahead of us. Numerous events are coming up quickly – enough to make your head spin. Here is a summary of our involvement with PRSA, DMA, PUSH, SIS, SES and SMX events over the next 30 days:

05/14/08 – MIMA: Duality Reality – Who Controls Social Media in the Enterprise?
The local interactive marketing association along with inspiration and motivation from Doug Pollei, there will be a very interesting panel of in-house Interactives discussing how large companies (General Mills, Best Buy, Target, Fingerhut and OptumHealth) are adopting and measuring social media programs. If you’re in the Twin Cities this week and involved with social marketing now or in the future, this is a MUST ATTEND event.

Online Reputation Management: Living Radically Transparent with Andy Beal & Dr. Judy Strauss


In the film Hollywoodland, Adrien Brody plays a private eye tasked with determining whether TV star George Reeves, famous for playing Superman, did indeed commit suicide or, as his mother suspects was murdered. Brody’s character remarks that if the biggest headlines are insisting that Reeves’ case is indeed closed, the only way to reopen it is to sway public opinion to the mother’s side by manufacturing their own headlines, simply too large to ignore.

I was reminded of this scene, and how far we’ve come in a relatively short amount of time, while reviewing Andy Beal & Dr. Judy Strauss’ excellent new book “Radically Transparent: Monitoring & Managing Reputations Online.”

Online Reputation Management for Individuals


Recently I’ve had several discussions with a reporter on how small businesses can effectively use blogger relations and PR to market themselves. Out of that conversation came another topic about Online Reputation Management – not for companies, but for individuals.

There’s a tremendous amount of content and in some cases debate, being generated in the search marketing and public relations communities about the need to measure brands and reputations online. The first step in a ORM program is to start monitoring and there are some pretty incredible and often times costly software tools emerging to do that.

That’s all fine and good for measuring brands or companies, but what if the brand is you?

Basics of Online Reputation Management

As much time and effort that marketers put into improving visibility within search results, not all search engine ranking pages (SERPs) are good. Increasing numbers of companies are experiencing the sharp edge of the sword from disgruntled employees or customers taking advantage of the amazingly simplistic process of publishing content to the web.

You may recall such situations as “Dell Hell” or Googlebombing “miserable failure” for examples.

Because these references occur within the search results, many companies percieve search engine reputation management as a SEO problem. But displacing negative search results only treats the symptoms of the problem. It’s not a cure.

While other companies see tarnished brand issues as more of a public relations issue, it’s important to understand that sometimes it’s the PR firm that is at the root of the problem. Look no further than the Edelman and Walmarting across America situation for an example of that.

TopRank Down Under with SEO, PR and Reputation Management

SunRise at 35,000 ft
Susan and I made it to Sydney, Australia early this morning and go to watch the sun rise over Eastern Australia during the descent. After a few hours getting through customs, then getting our bags x-rayed on the way out and then getting checked again to get into a line to get to the exit of the airport, we made it outside for the line to the taxis. It might have been a lot of hurry up and wait, but we were just thankful to be outside in the fresh air.

Tomorrow I’ll be doing a presentation on SEO and Public Relations. The buzz about SEO and PR has been strong the past few years, especially with Greg Jarboe, Jamie O’Donnel, Sally Falkow, Amanda Watlington and many others including TopRank making significant headway into developing new strategies and tactics for clients.

Tips for Online PR

[TopRank is a full service provider of digital public relations services]

I did an interview recently and thought some of the Q/A would be useful for Online Marketing Blog readers:

What’s the difference between online PR and offline PR?

Basically, online PR invlolves activities geared towards influencing media, communities and audiences that exist solely on the Internet using online channles. That includes search engines, blogs, news search, forums, discussion threads, social networks and other online communication tools. Brand reputation monitoring and management is also a focus area for online PR.

Offline PR deals with the same things except with print, radio TV, conferences/events and other “real life” venues. One difference between online and offline PR is in pitching. For example, before pitching a print journalist, the publication’s editorial calendar is researched to see if there are any planned story opportunities. The subsequent pitch is specific to the upcoming story.