Reputation Monitoring and Management

This session gave a valuable and detailed overview of how to monitor and manage your online reputation, from recovering from a damaged online reputation, to some tips on how to be ready for damage control.

Krista Neher
Brian Chappell, Sr. Social Search Strategist, Ignite Social Media
Rhea Drysdale, Co-founder and COO, Outspoken Media
Jennifer Laycock, Director of Marketing/Editor, SiteLogic/Search Engine Guide
John Carcutt, SEO Manager, MediaWhiz
Jennifer Laycock, SiteLogic/Search Engine Guide

Jennifer’s presentation was titled “Avoiding a Social Media Conversation Catastrophe”, and she gave some really valuable tips on how to monitor your online reputation to avoid a catastrophe.

According to Jennifer, when it comes to online reputation management, you always have to listen, you usually have to respond, and you sometimes have to change.

Five things to measure (put in your order of priority):

  1. Awareness
    1. Number of friends & followers
    2. social media mentions
    3. branded search volume
    4. new links
  2. Conversions
  3. Relationships – how much conversation, tone, who is initiating? What percentage of comments are positive / negative
  4. Sentiment – do they like you or not, how is that changing over time?
  5. Engagement – unique visitors, time on site, frequency of visit, inbound links.

What to do when you get slammed online:
Don’t respond immediately, call a trusted advisor, and then correct the problem without defensiveness.

The second presenter up was Rhea Drysdale of Outspoken Media. Rhea’s presentation was oriented more towards reputation management as it relates to search.

Rhea presented on “Reputation Management – Making it Work”. Some of her key points:

  • Consumer trust in brands has fallen from 52% in 1997 to 22% in 2004.
  • It takes 4 years to recover from negative brand perception.
  • The key is to find out what’s ranking well, before you spend time in effort on fixing it.
  • is a great tool for registering for multiple social media sites at once. Secure your brand name across social media sites, so you can take up more of the SERP, even if you’re not active.
  • For local listings, register via
  • Build company profiles on Linkedin, Facebook, Hoovers, Indeed, Business Week, etc.
  • Stop hurting yourself – if you respond to a negative post, don’t use your company name, because then that post or review will start ranking for it.
  • How to fix – In the long term, focus on link development, videos, and blogs.
    Rhea Drysdale Speaking at PubCon

    Rhea Drysdale Speaking at PubCon

John Carcutt of MediaWhiz was up next, with a presentation that focused on his work with clients who have serious ORM problems.

Typical ORM client profile:

  • upset, angry frustrated, panicked, needs immediate resolution

The company should respond by:

  • Being brave, prepared & having a plan
  • Be confident – confidence is experience based. More confidence= less craziness.
  • ORM: target terms – what are the terms that are bringing up the negative reviews/ comments? Capitalization matters, sometimes there are ORM longtail issues.
  • ORM focus – personal, focus on social. Brands, focus on content.
  • Set expectations – which engines, how many positions deep do you want to bury negative reviews? Plan for modifications. Agree on what you’re doing prior to initiation
  • Listing Assessment – go through listings with client one by one.

Finally, was Brian Chappell of Ignite Social Media, who talked about the differences in reputation management between large brands and small businesses.

No matter the size of the organization, you should:

  • Get the most important data
  • Make sure that the right people see the right data
  • Figure out the right issues &  keywords to monitor
  • Choose the right tools – make sure that the data goes back at least 6 months
  • Break out keyword buckets to clarify distinct campaigns, like sub brand, important people, competitors.
  • Eliminate the noise – determine negative keywords. Don’t modify keywords too often, because it can cause data to become inconsistent.
  • Assign specific posts & threads to specific people.
  • The final step is to take action – do something about the data & you need to work on this on a long term basis.

One of the most interesting aspects of this session was the idea of your reputation in terms of the SERPs. The presenters talked about how important it is to not have any negative reviews or blog posts in the first page of the search engine results pages, and how you can use SEO & linkbuilding to move those negative comments down.

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