Whether you’re trying to build, repair, or maintain your company’s reputation, hiring the services of a
reputation management company is a good idea. A lot of companies don’t see it as a necessary expense, until something bad happens that negatively affects their once sterling reputation.
Something as simple as a Yelp review can make or break your company image, so you need to start taking your brand’s reputation more seriously. You can do this by hiring an agency or professional to help you out. Before making the big investment though, schedule a consultation and ask the reputation management experts these questions.
Do you perform audits?
An audit is often the first step in repairing a reputation, or even maintaining it. You need to see what is working and what is not working for your online presence, and an audit will allow you to do that. It is basically just an extreme analysis of every aspect of your company, from your social media presence to the functionality of your website. In order to come up with the best game plan possible, an audit should be done before anything else.
What are your main reputation repair strategies?
You shouldn’t even have to ask this question; the experts should tell you right away about the services they provide and the strategies they utilize. Is the main focus social media marketing, or are online reviews everything? Most agencies focus on a number of strategies and combine one with the next, but some have one main strategic path to follow.
Can you give me a few references?
You should be getting an idea of their reputation too, not just focusing on your own. Just like your customers have a perception of you and your brand, so will their clients. After you get an idea of the services they provide, ask for references and reach out to their clients. If you’re not comfortable with this, at least Google the name of the agency and read some reviews to get an idea of their success rate.
How much do you charge?
No matter if cost is a concern or not, you should ask about their pricing model. Sometimes an agency can’t give you an exact answer during the consultation, but a ballpark number needs to be given at the very least. Depending on the firm, they might charge a fixed package rate or you might be charged with each separate service you choose. Also ask if an audit is included in the price or if that is paid for separately.
When will I see results?
Repairing a reputation takes work, so try not to let your instant gratification tendencies get the best of you. It could be several months before you see any improvements related to public perception. Ask the agency about the timeframe and when you can start to see some of these improvements. If they say you will see change instantly, be wary of hiring them since instant results are not likely.