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According to a G2Crowd article: Years ago, your company would be fine with a simple website and email address for customer support. Now, consumers’ tech habits have gone multichannel (and omnichannel), and our marketing has had to adapt accordingly.

Your team likely manages at least half a dozen different properties and profiles, from websites, to micro-sites, to social networks.

And these aren’t just communication channels. Your customers are actually looking to do business with you on Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, and beyond. Millennials are around as likely to buy products on these social networks as they are from your own website or physical store, according to data from BigCommerce’s “2019 Omni-Channel Retail Report.”

What is online reputation management?

Online reputation management is simply actively monitoring, managing, and engaging with the public perception of your brand online, with the goal of proactively crafting brand sentiment.

Because of how democratized and open publishing is now, you’re less in control of your brand than ever before. It’s easier for any coverage, positive or negative, to amplify and spread – giving more power to the members of your audience.

Not so long ago, if a disgruntled customer complained, it would only reach whoever was in earshot. Today, it can reach hundreds of their followers. If a critic wrote a poor review, it would appear in their local paper for thousands to read instead of their website, available to millions.

However, while other people have the ability to reach exponentially more people, so do you.

Online reputation management is when you take advantage of that. It includes both proactive and reactive measures and both talking and listening, depending on the circumstances and your brand’s goals.

Why is online reputation management especially important today?

Before online marketing changed everything about how we do business, word-of-mouth (WOM) existed in more of a vacuum.

Now, anything said about your business or brand has the potential to impact your digital footprint. The same footprint that potential customers, employees, and investors see when they’re researching and considering your brand.