Your online reputation is how others see you, when they look for you online. Done right, online reputation management creates positive and lasting impressions, prevents misleading trends, and gives you the opportunity to shine and tell the right story – your story.
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Successful businesses are built on a good reputation. Having a good reputation will lead to business advantages like networking and referrals. They happen to be the least expensive form of marketing and they tend to bring in huge sales. You cannot be connected though or get referrals if you don’t develop your reputation. How then do you develop your reputation as a growing business?
Here are three steps to develop your reputation.
1. Write and Speak
This is a method of building your reputation that most business owners don’t pay attention to. Writing is an excellent way to let people know about the level of expertise of your business. Publish as many articles about your business as you can. This will allow you to get to a larger audience. Always keep your articles informative vs.promotional, and provide value around tips and knowledge related to your expertise. If you can do this, then more people will be eager to read your content and follow up on your business.
Another tip is to mix with networking groups, service clubs and other relevant organizations looking for speakers. Volunteer to speak at events around trending topics that are fresh, informative and relevant. More people will be interested in you and what you do. The groups you are addressing should either be your potential customers or people who influence them. You can even get creative, and find ways to entertain via games, workshop practices or quick learning hands on exercises.
Your reputation can only grow if you network with the right people. Find like-minded networking groups in your area and attend their events regularly. Meeting face-to-face with people helps build stronger bonds and opportunities that you didn’t expect. Ensure that you attend mentoring events where you will meet with fellow business associates and make connections from there.
You can build your networking groups online via Meetup or EventBrite, as they have their own benefits. Connect with your friends and associates and consider sites where your services or products are needed and devote some of your time to that. You also should communicate with others constantly. Reputation isn’t built on silence or a single meeting, but they grow from an on-going dialogue and conversations.
3. Always Follow Up. Contribute and Help.
The fastest way to develop your reputation is to network more than others do. Always follow up with the people you met and had relevant conversations with. Hand out your business cards and collect theirs. Send them an article or direct them to your website where they will have more information about what products you sell or what services you offer. Always be dependable, as this will help keep you top of mind.
You should also volunteer your products or services to a cause you believe in. Volunteering is a huge way to develop your reputation, and over time, people will see your capabilities. Help out when your help is needed. Answer questions either on social media or from your associates. Get people to follow you and join groups that you participate in, or create. Helping people is another way to build your reputation very quickly.
And don’t forget, always be professional. Address people professionally, and maintain a professional appearance at all times.
The steps listed above will help your build a reputation for you and your business in no time.