As social networking has become broadly integrated into the fabric of daily communication, the ways in which businesses and their consumers ‘communicate’ with and ‘assess’ each other has rapidly evolved into an ‘out of user control’ environment. The ability to evaluate business or individuals based on online information prior to initial contact has turned the traditional pattern of interaction on its head.
Online Reputation Management is the process by which conversation and interaction in the social-networking environment is managed. ORM leverages social networking interactions to achieve the greatest return on time and resources spent, and this includes both positive and negative images/statements.
The market demand for ORM is already well established and is growing exponentially. Because information travels at the ‘speed of light’ – especially negative information – the ability to perform damage control and to differentiate one’s brand from competitive brand circumstances is critical. Within five years, “social media strategy” will simply be a necessary and integral part of overall brand strategy.
In the meantime, entities that leverage social media technology/phenomena, as almost all entities are now doing or will do, need an effective way to tie the impact of campaigns and viral marketing to their brand to protect their bottom line. Traditional analytics can show coincidental activity, and possibly a correlation between social media efforts to the bottom line, but current metrics are totally inadequate at determining causation between activity and how the market qualitatively or quantitatively views a brand.
Trendicy believes that enterprises and individuals should have access to the information by which they are being evaluated, and be given the tools necessary to respond to the online image/statements as they deem necessary. ORM is a new, critical, and evolving Internet skill. What you don’t know about – or just don’t react to quickly enough – can seriously affect your business brand (e.g.: store name, or product/service), your personal brand (e.g.: a lawyer’s or physician’s reputation), or even personal reputation in a matter of hours.