Because of the viral nature of Internet content, something posted online could easily bring down the reputation of someone who took years to build it. But what is destroyed could also be rebuilt, much faster if the damage is controlled early on in its appearance.
Trying to live down negative publicity in the Internet age is a herculean activity, particularly if it has long since been entrenched in the public consciousness. For instance, Microsoft’s Internet Explorer has been reduced to a laughing stock in the computer community, having a reputation of unreliability over the years despite improvements. Microsoft launched a tongue-in-cheek ad campaign to shrug off the old perceptions of the browser. Although it has garnered a fan base not long after, Internet Explorer has a long way to go before moving away from its tarnished image.
Of course, protecting your corporate image is a slightly different game from protecting that of a product, with much more at stake. Making sure that the reputation of your company stays clean is of paramount importance. As the saying goes, prevention is better than cure; taking a more proactive and appropriate action toward addressing negative content is better than spending nearly a lifetime trying to live it down after the damage is done.
Noticing negativity early quickly can lead to many benefits: legitimate criticism and customer reviews have their place in the growth of a company, allowing you to serve your customers better. In addition, keeping track of unscrupulous black propaganda could help preserve your company’s good name. Likewise, if the damage has been done before your knowledge, online reputation repair could come to you or your company’s aid. By working to push down negative results in search engines, online reputation management could help in an integrated campaign to clear your company’s name.
Managing and protecting the online reputations of yourself and your company could seem like an impossible task. But the benefits gained from dedicating time and resources to online reputation repair are unmatched. A good name shouldn’t be allowed to be tarnished that easily, after all.