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Can I Get My Business Reputation Back?
by Dave Thomas Thu, 02/21/2013 - 13:06
Without your reputation, what are you as a business leader?
Unfortunately for some business owners, their reputations are called into question at times, something that can certainly have a negative impact on their ability to conduct business.
If you have found your business reputation questioned at one time or another, here are some ways to improve it, moves that may very well increase your revenue stream:
1. Understand the problem - Determine why your business reputation has been called into question in the first place. Did you or one of your employees (where applicable) have a run-in with a customer? Is a current employee or competitor taking you task on social media and on online forums? If the answer is yes, how quickly did you act to rectify the matter? In many cases, delaying on resolving the matter can lead to not only lost business, but bad public relations;
2. Timing is important - When there is an issue at hand with a customer, how quickly do you act to solve the matter? Time is of the essence when you have such a situation arise, so don’t put the matter on the backburner. Customers have every right to expect you as a business owner will work to rectify the problem in a timely manner, not when you feel like getting around to it. If the customer feels like they are not important to you, they may give you the same message in return, meaning they end up with one of your competitors;
3. Treat them with kid gloves - Even though customers make mistakes too, you have to assume from the start that they have a legitimate beef. In doing so, treat the individual with the utmost respect, looking at all avenues available to not lose their business. You may think losing a customer here or there is not that important, but did you ever stop to think how those customers can add up over time? If not, do the math, realizing that it can have a negative impact on your return on investment (ROI);
4. Win them back - One of the best ways to regain your business reputation is by putting positive news out there about your company. By posting press releases, blog posts, customer testimonials etc. you spread the word about the good things you and your business offer consumers. In some cases, offering customers some rewards when there is an issue between you and them will help. If a customer purchased a product or service from you and was not happy with it, rather than having them tell the online world about their displeasure, offer them a discount on their next purchase. In doing so, you show them that their business does matter to you;
5. Be more attentive - Lastly, how did you let your business reputation get called into question in the first place? It never hurts to do a Google review of your business name from time to time, checking to see if there is negative discussion online about you and your company. Look at social media, relevant forums, and any other online vehicles where your company could come up in a discussion. The same holds true for talking with your employees (where applicable) about what they’re getting as far as feedback from customers (especially those employees in sales). Never assume your business reputation is spotless.
About the author
Dave Thomas writes for a variety of websites on topics such as human resources and running a small business.