You’ve been working hard to establish your brand. After months of social networking, content creation, and super marketing strategies you feel secure that you’ve done everything in your power to create a great brand. People are responding to your efforts and sales are rolling in.
Suddenly you find that one of your competitors have been speaking ill of your brand. What do you do?
Some people use new marketing strategies, some go on the PR offensive, and still others hire a lawyer. What options do you have if the competition is taking pot shots at your brand?
What’s The Truth?
If your competition is bad mouthing a bad move on your part, then take it in stride. As long as the competitor is telling the truth, this isn’t considered libel or slander. What you can do is empathize how you have changed, how you have improved the product or service, and use that to your advantage. Being gracious is better than turning on your offensive – when you’re admitting to a fault and showing how you have bettered your company or product.
However, if the entity badmouthing you is making up lies, you just might have a lawsuit. You will need to retain a lawyer and prove that the lies are just that, lies. This type of behavior is grounds for considerable fines and even a large award in a lawsuit.
Going on the offensive can sometimes work against you. Usually this backfires and can make your clients or potential customers run right into the arms of your competition. To create a great offensive strategy you might need to employ a reputation management company. These companies can help polish a tarnished reputation. Be careful in the company you employ, as their behavior can reflect on your company. Check their practices and if possible talk to their previous clients.
Don’t discount humor as an effective counter-strategy. Some companies have laughed at their own faults, then picked up their reputations – with great results. Consumers love a sense of humor, when a company can laugh at itself, very often it wins in the end.
It can be difficult to know just what avenue to take if you find that a competitor is trying to hurt your business by speaking ill of you, your product, or service.
It pays to know what the laws are concerning slander or libel in your state. When the competition crosses the line you may need to contact them with the help of a lawyer. Never rush things when it comes to these matters. Small business owners suffer the most with this sort of feud, especially if their competition is a larger company with more finances at their disposal. A large company may have a team of lawyers and a large PR staff.
Don’t despair, because as we all know, the underdog can come out on top.