In today’s fast-paced digital world, it takes only seconds for a negative spin to get spun out of control—thanks to the dawn of social media and the online community, bad PR can easily be just a click away. To keep a handle on your company’s internet image, consider employing the services of Houston PR firms that specialize in crafting and executing highly effective social media and web marketing campaigns.
You’ll also want to avoid these key mistakes to keep your business’ online presence on the up and up:
Mistake #1: Not monitoring industry forums and review sites
Regardless of what you put out there on the World Wide Web, don’t forget that there are plenty of online sources for your customers to have their say as well. Public forums and review sites like Angie’s List, Yelp and Citysearch—even Facebook—give a unique opportunity for the average Joe to weigh in on a business’ credibility—and just a couple of damaging opinions could lead to some majorly negative PR and lost business if you aren’t careful.
Be vigilant about what is being said about your business online by searching its name frequently and browsing sites like those listed above. If you see any badmouthing, do your best to rectify it by posting a response to the comments directly and offering to resolve the customer’s grievance. And of course, try to keep the bad review from getting out to begin with by providing excellent customer service!
Mistake #2: Not keeping employees’ personal social network images kosher
Remember that your business’ online PR doesn’t end with official company-affiliated communication alone. And while you can’t stop your employees from having their own social media accounts, you can require they keep their online conduct up to standards of professionalism you have set when representing the company. Make such standards part of company policy, include specific rules and limitations in employee codes of conduct and handbooks and, most importantly, communicate your expectations of online conduct to employees directly.
Mistake #3: Allowing bad-quality copy and design to define your business website (or, even worse, not having one at all!)
In today’s business market, not having a functional and efficient website is like heresy to public relations pros. A website gives your business a platform for its online identity, serves as a reference point for future and current customers and lends credibility and recognition within your specific industry—all fundamentals of good PR. That being said, just having a site is not enough—you need a good one. It doesn’t have to be flashy or technologically advanced, but it does have to have a clean and readable design, navigable features and professional-quality copy and images.