“If we hope to go anywhere or develop ourselves in any way, we can only step from where we are standing. If we don’t really know where we are standing… We may only go in circles…”
― Jon Kabat-Zinn, Wherever You Go, There You Are: Mindfulness Meditation in Everyday Life
Mindfulness is the practice of observing one’s thoughts as they flow and learning how to be in the moment. A benefit is better self-awareness so your actions are more meaningful towards your goals. So to know where you’re going, we need to know where we are and we can use this practice in marketing.
With reputation management and SEO, one can get too focused on increasing visibility without thinking about what content is amplified. It is not just your website and Yelp page that gets boosted in your SEO efforts. There are many local directories that will display syndicated reviews about your business that you were not aware of. Blogs, news stories, Facebook pages–anything mentioning your business can show up and it’s good to know what’s out there.
No matter your SEO strategy, if you are not actively managing your online reputation, you’re not doing much good. If you don’t know where your business is standing, you may only go in circles (with a bad marketing strategy).
Start first by managing the content you already have online. You may find your business mentioned in forums, Facebook groups, Twitter conversations, or blogs. If you don’t see a lot of customer complaints, don’t take that as a good thing right off the bat. This can be a sign of a lack of customer engagement. If there is negative feedback, this is a great opportunity to respond to them with a comment that shows prospective customers just how important feedback is to you.
It’s a bad idea to start a blog or Facebook page and never update it. Or only update with coupon deals or advertisements. People will quickly mark your content as spammy, and you’ll find low engagement on posts. You will only see the value of social media if you make it valuable for your customers. You don’t have to go viral, in fact, it’s better if you don’t worry about that at all. Just focus on what your customers are interested in, and what they respond to. Reputation management is about engagement not just visibility.
In summary, managing your reputation starts by knowing what you already have. Whether repairing a reputation or finding ways to fill the void, know where you stand so you don’t find yourself going in circles.