Whether you work for a small company or a huge corporation or even work for yourself, you know how important reputation is in the PR business. Essentially it’s the word of mouth of the industry; just like the product or company you represent, if word gets out it’s no good, people won’t buy it. It doesn’t matter if the word of mouth is true or not – you’re sunk, and you have to fix it.
Seeing as your reputation is your “product” so to speak, you have to make sure word of mouth is good. If not, you risk losing out on opportunities that ordinarily would come your way with no problem.
Find out below how to handle your reputation as a public relations professional.
Check on a Regular Basis
I know you’re busy. You’re stressed out to the max as you have twenty things due today and another fifty tomorrow. On top of that, two of your clients keep calling you up demanding to know why no media outlets have picked up their latest HR hire story.
The trouble is your stress level is causing you to be a little short with your clients. Unfortunately, you didn’t really realize it…until you decide to Google yourself one day. Lo and behold, there are reviews on various websites saying what a great job you did “if only they weren’t so angry all the time.”
If you don’t know there’s a problem, you can’t correct it. If you really need an opinion, ask away on social media or send out an email asking clients to take a survey. The last thing you want to do is find out at the wrong time that people think you’re an ornery jerk when you’re clearly not!
Fix it Immediately
What do you do when someone talks bad about a client? You jump on that immediately, right? You don’t want anyone to see the bad comment and notice nobody responded to it, so you hop on Facebook or wherever and answer it ASAP.
However, you may not do the same with your bad reviews of your PR reputation simply because you don’t think it’s as dire. This is not the case, though. That very same company you defended could find your review and decide to drop you, even though you’ve done nothing but back them up for months.
At the very least another potential client will notice this bad review of you and turn away without a second thought. The longer you wait, the more likely it will be that someone notices the awful comment. That’s why you should jump on it immediately – you don’t have to get it deleted, and in fact answering it honestly and kindly can go a long way in reassuring a potential client you’re the one for them.
As a PR pro, you know how quickly public opinion can change…and spread. You have to take your reputation as seriously as your clients’ reputation, or you won’t have any clients to worry about
Have you ever had a bad review online? How did you handle it?
This article is written by Mickie Kennedy, founder of eReleases (http://www.ereleases.com), the online leader in affordable press release distribution. Download your free copy of the Beginner’s Guide to Writing Powerful Press Releases here: http://www.ereleases.com/insider/beginnersguide.html