Reputation Management is both an art and science at once. Although there are many facets to successfully bumping down highly ranked negative reviews or posts, the techniques involved are easy to learn and do not require a ton of investment in the vast majority of cases. In this article, we are going to go over how to use Facebook for Reputation Management purposes.
To begin with, the whole idea of getting involved and posting information on social media sites (from a Reputation Management perspective) such as Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, and Yelp is to eventually have a high ranking profile page that will appear higher in a search engine’s results than negative, incorrect or inflammatory information does. There are a multitude of examples when it comes to information you may want removed altogether (but are unable to get the post removed). Some of these include a negative business review posted on a personal or business blog, public law enforcement data that refers to another individual with your same name, or perhaps even a criminal database of minor offenses that does in fact refer to you, but is no longer relevant or needs to be pushed down as far as possible in order to secure employment.
Using Facebook To Create Profile
Facebook is one of the most widely used social media sites worldwide and is a constant source of customized information that members use to received updated data on their friends, family, favorite brands, and more. The Starbucks page I’ve pasted in the screenshot above has the standard “Profile” and “Background” images that all users are allotted, plus a row of key statistical figures that let fans of this particular company know how many people have “Liked” that page, how many are talking about the company, along with how many page views have been generated from the Facebook entry.
In this case, we see that Starbucks’ Facebook page has more than 35,000,000 Likes with nearly a quarter of a million individuals talking about the brand. The total page view stats show that the page has been visited well over 8 million times. The ability for other Facebook members to “Like” the brand as well as send a personal message can be found on the right-hand side. You’ll also notice boxes for Photos, International page, Pinterest page, Videos, etc. Clicking on the “About” link at the bottom left of the screenshot will provide those interest with additional facts (set by the company itself) about the brand, its corporate headquarters, retail locations, and so on.
The reason why it is so important to have as much information as possible included in your own social media profile is because you will eventually use it to outrank another less flattering or incorrect page that refers to you or your company. Try searching for “Starbucks” in the Google Search Engine. You’ll quickly find that its Facebook, Twitter and other social media site pages are ranked highly. This is the advantage of using social media for Reputation Management. Assuming you’re not able to completely remove an undesirable post from the Internet, you’re next best bet is to get up to speed on how to use social media profile pages (such as Facebook) to outrank those other unwanted pages.
If you are creating the profile as an individual rather than a company, the process is extremely simple and requires your full name, valid email address, telephone number, date of birth and gender. Facebook will promptly send a verification email to the account you entered.
Even if you already have a Facebook account, it may be a good idea to create a separate page for you or your business; especially if you’ve used a misspelled or otherwise non-precise page name. Remember, in order to outrank those unwanted pages in the long term, you’ll need to be as specific as you can. Inputting any number of random characters into your URL may come with the woeful result that you are unable to bump that slanderous review or post from another website off of the top search ranking page.
Although there are reasonable arguments when it comes to privacy and the use of data within the social media website realm, your main goal in Reputation Management is to publish a large amount of correct data, not hide it. That’s the best way to ensure that your Facebook page outranks another less flattering or incorrect page in the future.
Facebook For Companies, Fan Pages, And Brands
There is a link at the very bottom of the Facebook Sign Up page that asks if you want to create a profile for a Celebrity, Band or Business. Click on that link if it refers to your case then choose from the options of Local Business or Place, Company Organization or Business, Brand or Product, Artist Band or Public Figure, Entertainment, Cause or Community.
All of the basic requirements to create a page are straight forward. The “meat” of your Reputation Management project comes from updating your profile page after it has been created with content. This can range from product sales to multimedia entries, but we’ll get into that later. If a company page has already been created for your business or band, you can easily Claim Your Brand Online by following the steps in the article I’ve linked here.
Updating Your Profile And Obtaining Followers
It is important to keep in mind that you may want to tightly control Who if your Facebook friend if this page is being created for an individual. However, if you’re creating the profile for business purposes, there will be a generic “Like” option for fellow members and the bulk of your effort will be geared towards providing updated information in the form of posts, links, photos, and videos.
Fortunately, you do not have to worry about Facebook’s SEO efforts – you only have to work on your own page and chances are it will be ranking highly for keywords within a relatively short amount of time.
Once you have Followers, Fans, Friends and Likes, you’ll begin receiving feedback on your page. Again, this will vary depending on whether your particular page refers to an individual or business entity. At some point, you will undoubtedly receive a Friend request or comment that is unwanted. For a personal profile page, the simple solution to this is to simply remove it from your profile and timeline.
However, this can be a much more tricky process for companies and may need to be evaluated on a case-by-case basis. Let’s analyze the negative comment that Starbucks received on its Official Facebook Page in the screenshot below.
Here, a Facebook user has entered an opinion that is negative towards the business. As the owner of your own Facebook Profile Page, you will need to decide how to handle each post and decide whether to ignore, remove, or reply. These decisions fall more into “Brand Management” rather than the actual search rankings aspect of Reputation Management, but is vitally important if you are using the page for any purpose that may affect the public perception of your company in the future.
You’ll notice that the Starbucks representative who manages this particular Facebook page decided to reply and provided links to a page on the firm’s official website for the member to refer to. Of course, this may not always end the debate, but it is very important for your company to decide early on how it will respond to negative feedback as well as positive comments. Adding multimedia content can be a great way to keep current Followers up to date while attracting new “Likes” to your Facebook page. When all is said and done, the more information that is available on your Facebook page, the more likely it is to begin ranking high for specific keywords that may eventually knock off a competing negative review or post on another site.
You can imagine how many negative articles or reviews have been published on the Internet when it comes to high profile companies. But those reviews have been successfully outranked by social media site pages (as well as the firm’s official website) due to Reputation Management efforts.
Do It Yourself
As you can see, it may not require a huge budget in order to begin doing your own Reputation Management work. There is definitely some investment of time required to study up on different techniques along with data entry, but you can save quite a bit of money by doing the research yourself and simply getting started on your specific project.
I hope this article has been helpful to our readers who have questions regarding how Facebook and other social media sites can be used as a successful means of bumping down website pages that are unwanted. As always the best option is to have those pages completely removed by the website that has published them, but when that’s not possible, you’re next best bet is to get those pages to rank less importantly than your Facebook profile, which contains information you have a greater amount of control over.
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