Quality Client Communication

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Adverse online substance is a genuine issue for any individual or business. For good client communication there are better places online where individuals can discuss your business either in a productive or damaging way. These days, most buyers will do an examination first before purchasing a certain item or utilizing a specific administration. Customer dissention sites have gotten uncontrolled and are greatly powerful where they permit anybody to leave reaction and post audits. It may be confounding or you normally don’t know where to start regarding monitoring and dealing with your online notoriety so here are a couple of tips for you to begin.

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Building a Brand

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Building a Brand is more than simply settling a catchy name on an item. Brand is all about relationships: it is the way clients feel about your item. That inclination will either slant them to utilize your item or pass it by for something else. What control does a marketer have over the personalities and hearts of purchasers? Marketing authority David Jobber has distinguished seven factors in building a fruitful brand.

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How to Improve the Reputation of Your Landscaping Firm

Even the finest landscaping firms will leave customers unhappy from time to time. No one is perfect, and as such every company will make mistakes from time to time. Unfortunately, unhappy customers are statistically much more likely to state their opinion than happy ones. Happy clients generally don’t feel much impetus to speak up. They’re content, and as such they view their experience as complete. An example of such testimonials can be found here. However, for unhappy customers the story is still wide open. They have not yet reached a satisfactory ending, and as such they use platforms like Yelp and Angies List as a means of getting some closure and moving on. Some almost view posting negative reviews as a form of revenge or an attempt to right a wrong. However, dissatisfied customers are certainly within their rights to post negatively about less than desirable experiences they’ve had, just as those businesses are within their rights to defend themselves. However, if you feel that you’re business needs a reputation overall you’ll soon find that it’s not an easy process. Here are a few ways to better your landscaping firm’s online standing effectively:

Monitor: You obviously won’t know if there are issues with your company’s online reputation if you don’t monitor it carefully. Be sure to regularly check review sites for posts concerning your business and keep update on the popular consensus concerning your practices and performance.

Respond: This is one of the trickiest parts of the process, but it’s absolutely essential. When you respond to negative online reviews you’ll need to walk a fine line: you’ll need to state your case without being argumentative, provide an explanation without looking like you’re making excuses and correct the negative account with seemingly condescending or duplicitous. Be sure to keep positive and avoid personal attacks. Give your side of the story without being argumentative and readers may begin to have a better understanding of the situation. In fact, it’s a good policy to respond to both positive and negative reviews. This will make you seem less desperate and more open.

Solicit: As I said before, happy customers aren’t especially likely to leave good reviews, regardless of their level of satisfaction. As such, you should solicit them directly. When you finish a job, ask your client if they wouldn’t mind posting a review of their experience. Don’t beg for help or try to make it mandatory, but let them know that that their input would be helpful and that their kindness would really benefit your business.

Learn: When you receive a negative review it’s important to read it carefully and try to understand where the writer was coming from. Being in denial doesn’t help anyone. Responsible businesses learn from their mistakes and work to make sure that they won’t make the same error twice. Landscapers like Ann Arbor lawn mowing company Twin Oaks have learned over time to put the needs of customers first, and as such they’re earned their trust. Your business can do the same in time. Stay positive, keep an eye on your online standing and always do work that you can feel proud to stand behind.

Trust and Reputation on the Web

Reputation management on the web is at best a useful tool to help bury unflattering search engine results. However, it’s an inherently difficult thing to attempt for a few reasons:

  1. People still tend to trust what they read. This is a hangover from the days of print, where the barrier to entry to printing information was high. Anyone publishing material about someone therefore had to invest a great deal in order to do so.
  2. Search engines are getting better. All search engines ultimately aim to remove low trust and spam results, and only give relevant, specific material that closely matches the intent of the search term used. This technology is now getting advanced enough to take social cues such as shares, likes and forwards as an indication that content is high value.
  3. People will always, always prefer solacious gossip over dull, ordinary fact. Many won’t admit it, but we all do. Therefore search engine results that look more interesting and potentially more scandalous tend to have higher click through rates on search pages. This reinforces the value of these results in the search engines, pushing them higher.

Reputation management is essentially about replacing the information that we’d like to push down the results pages with information that is more favourable to the person involved. We can never delete it. Although there have been recent advances here in the right to be forgotten the content is still there on the web and can resurface. The goal therefore is to make that content appear less trustworthy rather than try to get rid of it entirely.

Re-Establishing Trust

The ultimate aim with reputation management is to help reestablish the trust of someone who is checking up on you using a Search Engine.

Part of the issue with trust on the internet is the difficulty in establishing who to trust without a centralized third party telling us it’s ok. As an example, if wants to know whether they should trust someone else on the internet, there are various methods they could rely on:

  1. They can know the person directly, in which case they will have already made up their own minds through experience.
  2. They can know of that person indirectly. That is, someone they know and trust can recommend whether to trust them or not. This is what happens when we trust an authoratative website when they print an article.
  3. They can look to see whether that person is vouched for by a third party, who they assume will independently check and maintain a record of how trustworthy they are. This is what happens with credit scores, cryptographic key authorities Government IDs, search engine results and so on.

Therefore if you don’t know someone directly, it’s only currently possible to establish trust by going through a third party.

That centralization of trust is problematic. In the example of the search engine results, by appearing on the front page we expect this content in some way to have been vouched for by that Search Engine. In reality it isn’t. However, the fact that it’s there still carries the weight of authority that the Search Engine brings to it.

There have been steps to decentralise trust through the use of technology; recent advances in cryptoassets and cryptocurrencies, the technology behind the popular digital currency bitcoin, has led to calls for an economy which does away with the need for trust entirely. This leads to a fourth possibility in the list above:

  1. Trust can be established through a decentralized unimpeachable process that can be run at a distance on both parties, and published for all to see.

We are probably some way away from this being a reality. Although it is perfectly feasible to establish trust through a process, the process itself would need to be well established. Being decentralized is also a double edged sword. It means no one can interfere with the results, but mistakes would be very difficult to rectify.

So for the time being reputation and trust on the internet needs to be actively managed, to ensure that the right information is found, and that inappropriate or incorrect information does not gain undue authority.

How ‘How-To’ Articles Sell Products, Build Trust And Rocket Your Reputation

Online, if you want people to buy your product without touching it and without talking to you face to face then you need to show them the product in use, show them out to use the product and show them how the product is made and then once they know the full story they will purchase from you. But until you do these things you will not build the necessary trust and reputation with your customer to sell your product through your website.

Apple does an amazing job of this. So does Saddleback Leather Company. And so does a little-known pressure cleaning website that we consulted for a while back. Let’s take a look at how these 3 websites build trust and rocket their reputations through how-to articles and videos.

Apple

Apple made this video to introduce their iPhone 5s. In case you don’t like watching videos the gist is that they show you everything the phone can do. They show you how they packed so much technology into such a light and thin gadget. They show you the apps and the real life situations where those apps will help you do stuff. Apple sells their products like no one else. You watch that video and you feel like they made each iPhone specially for you. You see that each curve and button and word that they say means something. It makes you believe in Apple. And that’s how they get you to buy their products. I speak for myself, but I feel like I trust Apple to make a great product and that is why I own an iPhone and Mac Air.

They don’t so much say this is how to use the iPhone there more build reputation by showing you how they built it and why.

Saddleback Leather Company

Check out this video Saddleback Leather made showing you how to make a bag like theirs. The comedy of the video is that they are encouraging you to copy their bag but at the same time showing you how much effort goes into creating them. Thereby preventing people from copying them cause so much effort is required. It’s pure genius. You can’t help but like the company and the product. Again, you don’t really need a how to use a leather bag article but Saddleback is able to build trust with a ‘how-we’ make our product and how others use our product theme to their videos and articles.

Pressure Cleaner Reviews

We consulted for a pressure washer reviews website a while back. They were worried about not being trusted as a review site. The guy who runs it is a mechanical engineer and has been involved in industrial pressure cleaning gear for 6 years. We advised him to build trust and reputation with real-life photos and how-to articles. he researched and then wrote an article on cleaning your driveway with high pressure water and then showed pictures of the end result of a clean driveway to encourage people that it was worth doing. Of course, the goal of these articles was to get people to buy the pressure washer to wash the driveway. And it worked – many did.

So there you have it. Three examples how providing back story and informational how-to articles for your product or service will help build trust and reputation online to rocket your sales.

Remove the Fear Out of Purchasing a Mattress

It’s important to start working on learning about the various ways to tell if a mattress company is reliable or not. This is so that it’s a little more simple to figure out if what that company makes is going to be worth the money. Here are 5 tips to get you started.

1) Reliability can be learned about through the Better Business Bureau’s website. This is a place where companies have customers rate them and even file complaints. If complaints are resolved, then it will help the company’s rating, while ignoring what people are saying will harm it. If a business is signed up for this then it’s safe to say that they’re not too afraid to show that they have great customer service and know how to take care of problems. It’s good to be wary of newer companies if they have no rating or aren’t signed up because they may not be reliable.

2) Serta is an example of a reliable mattress brand because they have been in the business for a while and people have had mostly good things to say about them. Companies are easy to research, it’s all about making sure that they’re well reviewed and in most cases this can be found if you just go online and search for product reviews. It should be noted that it’s good to read a review on a product using a website that doesn’t sell the product themselves. You want to see the experience people have had with the company that made the mattress, not a third party seller.

3) A company will be reliable if they offer warranties because then you’ll know that they have a product that can generally be trusted. They wouldn’t offer a warranty if they knew the mattress was not all that great because then they would have to honor a lot of them and lose money. Once it’s established that a warranty can be used with the company’s product, you should look up the terms and conditions associated with it just to be sure it’s not one that only lasts for a short period of time.

4) Check what the company uses to create the mattress so you can see whether or not they’re creating a reliable product. A good company will not only use top quality materials, they will use ones that are safe for the consumer and the environment. The Priage mattress collection is a great example of this. You’ll need to figure out what you can about what materials last longer than others when researching which company to work with. It’s easy to learn of what a mattress from a certain business is made of through searching online for consumer reports and other reporting agencies that work with informing the public.

5) Reliable mattress companies are not going to lie in their advertising. If you get a mattress and it’s not exactly what was advertised, then that indicates that you were lied to. It’s always good to avoid places that say they make something that’s priced in a way that’s too good to be true. Advertising doesn’t always ring true, but it should at least be presented in a way that mostly is truthful. If they say one thing all of the time and it turns out that’s not even true, then there’s no way that they are going to be reliable to work with.

You can also check out this website here for additional information and unbiased reviews on various mattress brands.

How celebrities can deal with reputation damage

Everything that is posted online is hard to get offline again. This is something we all become more aware of each year. Celebrities and branded businesses are known for getting involved in difficult situations when others have posted unpleasant information about them online. Private information is ideally kept private and doesn’t see the light of day on the Internet, especially not for those celebrities who live a hectic lifestyle. There are ways to avoid the most common issues in order to maintain a sound reputation that extends online without problems.

For example: a celebrity becomes part of serious income related problems. Since they live a more expensive lifestyle, being out of work for a longer while can get them into financial trouble. If their situation doesn’t changes it could get out of hand. In this case they sometimes have to turn to loan lenders in order to finance their recurring expenses. Turning to one of these lenders is not something you want to advertise out loud. This should be a discreet process to keep a clean and solid reputation. It is important to do thorough research on possible loan centers before calling them. Are they trustworthy enough when it comes to their customers’ personal details? A dollar loan center is known for being pretty solid when it comes to privacy matters. They run a tight business and have build up a reputation that speaks for itself. Here you can read more on these centers.

Less professional banks and private lenders sometimes tend to have online privacy issues. There have been situations where a temporary employee leaked information about the acquired loan by a celebrity. As soon as the wide spread media gets hold of this news it is practically impossible to contain it on the Internet. Such news typically spreads out like wildfire and can really damage a person’s reputation. The question really is: how do you act in situations like this? There are generally two options to go for. You either try to refute the story, or you keep quiet for a while to see how things pan out in time. You can naturally only counter the story if it holds any false accusations. If it does not, the best thing to do, is to wait it out a day or two. Then you could think of a way to confront the media with your part of the story. The hard fact remains that online spread news is almost impossible to withdraw from the Internet entirely.

Some claim it is best to be transparent at all times by coming out with your own honest version of the story. People make mistakes. We all have our ups and downs in life. When you’re a famous person all of this gets magnified: both the highs and the lows. While it can really bring damage to a person’s life, there is also a way out of it. Bring yourself down to a regular person’s life. Could he get himself in the same situation? The answer is often ‘yes’. Be open about what happened. Although this can be painful, you will find an opportunity to get the story off your chest. The public will respect you for being honest and everybody will eventually go on with their lives, as your story slowly fades into the background.

Protecting Your Online Business Reputation

There is one part of a business that many business owners believe you can’t control. This part of your business is not related to its expenses, its management, or its financial statements. In fact, this part of your business is completely external to your operations. This part of your business is your reputation, and without a good reputation, you can say goodbye to clients, customers, and revenues. Luckily, there are actually some ways that businesses can protect their reputations in the online realm.

One way that you can ensure your business reputation is kept safe in an online environment is to ensure that all points of contact with your customers are running smoothly and efficiently. These points of contact include call centers, web sites, and any other way that a customer will interact with your business. For example, a vacuum cleaner sale Web site should have a page that is pleasing to the eye, and all links and information should be functional and current. This site should also be sure to feature several legitimate reviews by actual customers displaying how well the vacuums they purchased worked as well as how great the service on the site and in the store was. Consumers know that some business owners make up reviews, and they are aware of when one person wrote all of the reviews on a Web site.

Another way of ensuring that an online reputation is kept safe is hiring an employee whose sole duty it is to check for items that could harm the reputation. These employees would search through rating sites, blogs, and do keyword searches to find information that would be harmful to a business’s reputation. If they find certain reviews or news items that are blatantly untrue, these employees can contact the site owner and have them take down the information. Litigation could be pursued under libel law, which states that it is illegal to make slanderous remarks in writing when the person making those remarks is aware that they are untrue. This will ensure that untruths do not make potential consumers biased against your products.

For small businesses, this could be hard to do due to monetary restrictions. The small vacuum business mentioned above may find it difficult to raise funds to hire a full-time employee to check for harmful blog entries or peruse the internet for bad reviews of the product. If this is the case, a part-time worker, even a high school or college student, would be acceptable for this position. In fact, because many young people are extremely tech savvy, you may be able to gain insight in this area from hiring a member of the younger generation. Also, this is not something that needs to be a 40 hour per week job, since it is unlikely that a substantial number of negative or untrue pieces of information about your business will develop over the course of only a week or two.

There are also other Web sites and companies that specialize in protecting a business’s reputation. Several of these Web sites require a monthly payment and will monitor key words and other information that gets posted online. These services will then contact your business when there is something that is potentially harmful being posted and take action or allow you to take action. These companies can be a great line of defense for many businesses that do not have the time or resources to search and monitor for these issues themselves.

Of course, the best way to protect your reputation is to provide excellent customer service and prevent bad reviews from being posted in the first place. This coupled with monitoring using an internal employee or external service, can ensure that your business reputation is protected. While these prevention, monitoring, and action items can be costly, the effect of a negative or untrue review can result in lost revenues that are many times more costly.

Auto Dealer Online Reputation Management


Auto dealers have always placed an emphasis on managing their sales process,inventory, and marketing. By doing this they were able to produce better sales results and improved bottom line profits.
With the advent of on-line marketing, a new form of CRM (customer relationship management) has emerged. It is no longer enough to get direct feedback thru telephone and mail surveys.
Now, with one click of a mouse, potential customers can came to a page that can either give the good, the bad or the ugly.
Online reputation is now an extremely important component of CRM. There is no business that wants a bad reputation. They cannot ignore their online reputation. It has to be made a priority of every dealership. The WordWeb Dictionary defines reputation as “the general estimation that the public has for a person/business.”
Google and Bing search for reviews for business to include in their search reviews. A search by a potential customer can display not just the dealer’s website but also blog posts, reviews, Twitter comments and more.
So the objective of online reputation management is that the top 10 search results for the dealership are positive. Here’s what has to be done to manage a store’s online reputation.
1. Track all online comments
You can do this by using tools such as Google Alerts, Yahoo Alerts and TweetBeep
to keep a constant scan of the Web for specific words such as the dealer name or
city with dealer name. These tools will email the dealer when new instances of
these keywords are found.
2. Respond to comments quickly
When a positive comment is made it should be recognized with modest thanks. Web
addresses of these positive comments should be recorded for use later. When a
negative comment is found, a public offer should be extended to revisit the
customer’s concern. It not only may create a new dialog with the customer but it
shows potential customers the dealership’s demonstration of its commitment to
customer service.
3. Be pro-active in Internet marketing
Ask happy customers review your dealership on the major review sites such as
DealerRater, Yelp, Google Maps, etc. Create a Facebook page for the dealership.
On LinkedIn, Naymz, Twitter and Google Profiles have personal profiles for the
owner(s), sales and service managers, service writers and salespeople. Press
releases should be issued regularly with the dealer’s name in the headline.
Pay-per-click ads should be used.
4. Push the positive
On the store’s webpage create links to the positive comments. If available, link
positive comments from other sources to the dealership webpage. These positive
links can help get the dealer’s website into the top 10 results on search engine
results.
5. Be constantly on guard
Online reputation will depend on the dealer’s willingness to constantly monitor
the Internet and Social Media.
Third party vendors are now providing this support in CRM software packages targeting the Internet. These software monitor social media sites and give real time reports. They also check and report search engine results. They monitor for negative comments and notify the dealership so immediate actions can be taken.
NADA has a listing of vendors providing these services.

Repairing the reputation of a London sports massage courses and Pilates teacher training provider

The Internet is an environment in which damaging information about individuals or organizations can spread very quickly. Such information often ends up being displayed in search engine results pages to people who are searching for information about the affected parties, owing to the fact that search engines are becoming increasingly adept at detecting when a webpage contains information that interests a lot of people.

As reputation management professionals, we have to know how to prevent lies or other damaging statements about our clients from appearing to Internet searchers. But how can we possibly stop search engines from displaying this stuff?

The answer is, we can’t. Search engines like Google and Yahoo are self-regulated. They, or rather, their algorithms, display whatever content they consider relevant to something to their users.

But while we can’t stop search engines from displaying whatever information they like, there is still a way to sometimes stop most of their users from seeing that information.

The way we can do this is to try to give search engines additional information about our clients that appears more relevant than whatever it is we are trying to conceal, in the hope that the search engines will rank webpages containing our information above webpages containing the information we want to conceal, this limiting exposure of the damaging content to people searching online.

This is sometimes described as using search engine optimization for online reputation management purposes.

The technique was recently used with great success to help London based Discovery UK sports massage courses provider. Discovery’s business was suffering because shocking details about their sports massage courses were appearing on UK based gossip websites.

It seemed the young men who had been employed at Discovery’s London training academy to teach their massage courses as well as these Discovery Pilates teacher training courses had been using the venue as a front for selling drugs. Many of the massage course and Pilates course students were believed to have purchased some of their illegal substances.

The Metropolitan Police had somehow found out about it and the venue had been raided and the tutors in question arrested. They were later released on bail and still awaiting trial.

Discovery had since hired new tutors, but the reputation of these courses and the venue where the training takes place had been badly damaged. Details of the criminal investigation were appearing on the World Wide Web.

The marketing manager of Discovery UK wanted to make sure that the accounts of these goings on that had appeared on pages of numerous websites didn’t appear to potential customers in Google search results. So the agency handling their reputation management came up with a plan to minimize the risk of this happening.

They had the staff of Discovery draft a number of routine press releases about innocuous events taking place within the company. Then they supplied each of these press releases to the largest and most authoritative press release and news websites on the Internet.

Then, they used a software application called GSA Search Engine Ranker to build a large number of hyperlinks on random websites all around the Internet pointing at the webpages the Discovery press releases had been published on.

The large volume of hyperlinks, combined with the authority of the website domains that the Discovery press releases had been submitted to, made it appear to Google and the other search engines that the webpages containing Discovery’s press releases were more popular and relevant than the webpages containing stories of the drugs scandal, causing them to rank those webpages above the unwanted ones in search results pages that get shown to any Web users searching for the company by name.

This significantly reduced the chances of people seeing the controversial stories about Discovery, as most of the webpages containing information about the company that appeared in search results pages, aside from the company’s own official website, were the harmless official press releases.

How to Deal with Negative Reviews From Patients

Even the most reputable, trustworthy businesses can’t make every customer happy every single time. You are human, as are your employees, and no human is infallible, try though we might. As such, even the most skilled professionals out there may, and probably will, get negative reviews from time to time. Unfortunately, even if you have a number of positive reviews just one negative review can inspire doubt in the minds of potential clients, making them unsure and cautious and potentially causing them to walk away altogether. Customers and clients who have been wronged or inconvenienced certainly have every right to complain, just as you have every right to defend the reputation of your business. That being said, restoring and maintaining your online reputation requires a bit of delicacy. You can’t outright battle negative reviewers, and you can’t make them go away. Here are a few suggestions from Toledo Dentist, Dental Health Associates for ways to deal with negative reviews from patients.

Convince Positive People to Speak Up: This issue is compounded by the fact that people are more likely to review your business if their experience has been negative. Those who have had a good experience with your business have less impetus to write about the event. If something positive happens to us we tend to smile and carry on, perhaps telling a few friends verbally but otherwise continuing our day and hoping that our good luck will persist. If, on the other hand, one of us has a negative experience with a business we often feel compelled to tell as many people as possible, to, essentially, get some minor form of retribution. Often, happy customers have to be encouraged to write reviews or testimonials. Be sure to follow up with them, using their email to send them non-invasive follow-ups containing low-pressure calls to action. You could also give them a card with a web address where they can leave a review. You can even specifically ask patients to leave reviews. This is particularly useful if your business has a lot of regular customers, as those are people you know you can rely on to talk about you positively.

Respond to Negative Reviews: When you get a negative review, the worst thing you can do is just let it sit there. You’ll need to respond, but when you do you can’t be argumentative or dismissive. Be sure to apologize, to explain yourself, to make it clear that you understand and care about their complaint and to let them and other readers know that you’re working to find (or have already found) a solution. Alternatively, you can contact reviewers privately first, speaking to them about their experience and asking them if there’s anything you can do to right the situation. If their issue has been resolved sometimes negative reviewers will agree to take down or amend their original review. Whatever you do, don’t bully or threaten them. Remember that your company is at least somewhat in the wrong here and use the situation as a learning experience.

Allow Yourself to Breathe a Bit and Consider the Overall Impact: Nobody likes getting a negative review. However, before you panic and lose control, consider your overall situation. As I said before, everyone makes mistakes. Every business, not matter how well run, will make customers unhappy occasionally. However, if your company does its job well you may have to deal with an occasional bad review, but you won’t have to worry about dealing with a lot of them. Poorly run businesses can drown in negative reviews, but if your company is really as strong as you believe it to be that will almost certainly never be a concern for you. No matter a negative review might make you, bear in mind that, overall, you’re staying on the right course, that your business will move past this and that there will be plenty of positive reviews in your future.

By providing expert advice on patient questions about dental services, Toledo Dentist, Dental Health Associates established itself as a credible go-to office for its customers.

When Silence Serves You Better than Self Defense

Once you realize that someone has made damaging claims about you or your company online, your natural instinct is to set the record straight. You want to ask further questions to determine where this person is coming from and why they are saying those negative things. If what they are saying is inaccurate or false, you want to make sure that everyone reading their claims understands that they are not being honest.

Unfortunately, many people do further harm to their reputation when they try to jump to their own defense. One comment pointing out inaccuracies or false information leads to an Internet war that doesn’t look good for anyone involved. When this happens with a representative of a company, then the reputation of the company is negatively impacted as the virtual war escalates to hundreds, if not thousands, of messages through social media or online forum.

While it takes discipline to see those negative comments about yourself or company without trying to defend yourself, it is often the best thing you can do to preserve your integrity. You don’t want to reduce yourself to the level of a bitter customers, ex-girlfriend or unprofessional competitor. If you refuse to open yourself to further assaults via messages, you maintain your integrity while coming up with a better strategy to defend your reputation.

Consider an Example

Imagine you are the owner of a popular protein powder site. You invest all of your time and money into your site and it starts to become profitable. Just as you are getting excited about your growing online business, you discover an online fitness forum that features a discussion about your website. The person starting the discussion is anonymous, and they claim that you steal all of your content from a competing website and are dishonest in your protein powder reviews.

You may instantly get upset, knowing that you spend a lot of time personally testing protein powders so that you can create unique reviews and other content. Your first instinct may tell you to post a reply to the discussion, identifying yourself as the owner of the site and speaking the truth about your hard work.

If you do this, you will be met with even more comments from your anonymous accuser, and other people may join in on the accuser’s behalf. Before you know it, people are scouring your website not for protein powder information but for signs that the accusations are true. As you continue to defend yourself, the forum discussion grows longer, attracts more search engine attention, and draws in more people who start to view your website with doubt and concern.

The snowball effect is damaging even if you are trying to speak the truth about your site. That anonymous poster could very well be the owner of a competing protein powder site, but you have no way of forcing them to be honest about their true intentions. However, you can decide to monitor the forum discussion without participating. If it gets out of hand and starts popping up on the top of the search engines, you may need more substantial help that won’t snowball out of control.

Analysis is Crucial

When determining whether you need to remain silent or intervene on your own behalf, analytics are critical. For our example, you would use analytics for your website to determine the likelihood of the forum discussion negatively impacting your business. If the discussion is not prominently featured in search engine results for keywords associated with your site and your analytics show that your website is growing and becoming more profitable and popular, you may decide that the forum is not damaging your reputation.

If you do start noticing dips in your website traffic or see that the forum is getting out of control, you need to step in professionally. Posting to the forum on your own behalf is almost never a good idea.