When you think of a big red bull’s eye, what store comes to mind? Is it Target? Now how about the golden arches? Is it McDonald’s? These are just two examples of why it’s important to not just create a brand but do all that you can to protect it—both online and off.

Branding is what people use to associate themselves with your company. Branding is what develops your reputation. In short, branding is essential to the success of your business. Therefore, there is simply no way that a company can thrive in this day and age without making sure that it does all that it can to be seen as both professional and reliable in every way. So, if you are looking for some suggestions on how to protect your own business’s brand online, we have five tips for you below:
Monitor your brand. One of the best things about having a presence on the internet is that there are all kinds of ways to monitor what is being said about you and your company. Google provides you with the option of putting in keywords that can be sent as Google Alerts to your email account. Twitter has tools like Hootsuite or downloadable apps like Tweetdeck. Social Mention is also a website that assists you in locating what different social sites may be saying about your company as well.
Get your news out. It’s definitely important to have a blog on your website where you can regularly update readers about what’s going on with your company. But, if you want to increase the visibility of your business, make sure that you also draft formal press releases that can be sent to online publications and that can also be submitted through PR Web (they have a vast database of contacts who you can pay to send your information to).
Provide good customer service. Although there are a lot of companies who solicit comments from their clients and/or prospective customers, sometimes they are not quick to address the questions, comments or concerns that they might have. When you’re not quick to engage your customers or if you have someone who is not satisfied and you don’t personally address the matter, this is a surefire way to start getting a reputation for not providing the best customer service; that can ultimately provide detrimental results. So, make sure that you can be reached by phone, email, mail and even video chat during business hours and that you are proactive in finding resolves to customer complaints.
Look into having negative comments removed. If you’ve done some research on Reputation, then you know that it’s a company that is devoted to assisting you with protecting your brand online. When it comes to dealing with the negative comments on other websites that directly relate to your business, one thing that the company will probably recommend is that you contact the site to see if the comments can be removed. If the website chooses to leave them up, ask them to consider doing a feature article that addresses your business from a more positive point of view. If they agreed to do so, that could help to provide their readers with a more balanced perspective about your business.
Create business profiles. The more positive visibility that you have, the better. That said, some websites that rank high in search engines like Google and Bing are LinkedIn, AOL Hometown and Google Pages. Remember, the more professional you appear and the more consistent you seem to be about providing good service, the stronger, in time, your brand will become.