Social media is a powerful tool and can make or mar any business if it is poorly or terribly handled. It can be used to effectively and efficiently manage your startup’s reputation. To maximize the reputation-boosting benefits of social media, you’ll need to do some work to set up your accounts and keep them active.

Choose your name carefully

Be as consistent as possible when it comes to branding your social profiles, but this doesn’t mean that each of your accounts should be replicated. Sprinkle some diversity across your profiles to reflect the user base of each platform while keeping your brand’s voice, name and logos consistent. This will help your customers—and Google—identify your social media accounts.

Populate your profile

Your social profile is more than simply a photo and a username. Take full advantage of all fields, including description, location, and contact information. Leveraging these features will boost your legitimacy with users and help Google understand the connection to your brand.

Verify your accounts

It’s definitely worth taking time to verify branded accounts if the option is available. Verification informs potential followers that an account is authentic, and it prevents confusion if the owners of similar handles post abusive or negative content. Unfortunately, not all social platforms offer this feature and some only offer verification under certain conditions.

Share posts regularly

Note that simply establishing social profiles won’t improve your reputation or search profile. You’ll need to post regularly to show Google that your profile is active and relevant to your brand. Ideally, you should post different content across your profiles, but this isn’t always possible. If you don’t have the resources or aren’t sure what to post, you can set up an automation that shares your blog content across all social channels.

Train your team

It’s often overlooked, but ongoing training is essential to the success of social media reputation management. Complaints often languish in a brand’s feed rather than being addressed. Social media engagement training can prevent this common mistake and even help your team convert angry customers into loyal brand advocates.

Respond to messages professionally

The downside to brand monitoring is finding negative comments about your business. While your gut reaction may be to defend your company, this could actually be a mistake. Properly handling customer complaints takes empathy and understanding. Never, delete customer posts. It may be unpleasant to leave negative comments on your social feed, but deleting them can turn a few complaints into an angry mob. So, ensure that you respond to messages professionally.

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