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In today’s media-driven environment, business leaders are exposed to near-constant public scrutiny. This makes CEO reputation management more important than ever before.
Long gone are the days when leader image solely impacted brand reputation. These days, executive reputation affects nearly every aspect of the business, including internal management, customer trust and loyalty, investor assurance and more.
And because executives in the US have a reputation problem, companies now must do far more than the right thing. To protect themselves during a reputation crisis, modern brands need to set themselves apart from industry peers.
Surviving today’s cutthroat business environment requires a deep understanding of CEO reputation. Knowing how to protect leader image can help companies reduce business risk, solidify market position and build strategic partnerships.
How Bad CEO Reputation Management Can Destroy A Business
Like it or not, bad CEO reputation management is bad for business. And the actual costs of a negative online reputation for a company can be substantial.
And while many online review platforms often seem fraudulent or manipulative, consumers continue to trust what they say.
According to a 2020 Bright Local survey:
- 93% of consumers use the internet to research businesses
- 87% of people read online business reviews in 2020, a 6% uptick from 81% in 2019
- Less than half of consumers consider using a business with fewer than 4 stars
Of course, these numbers are not entirely related to CEO reputation. In many cases, bad personal management and lack of attention to professional exposure are the main culprits.
CEO and brand reputation go hand-in-hand
As a company gains notoriety, so does its CEO. And as those handling high-profile media interviews and public updates, CEOs become highly visible targets, especially for those looking to inflict harm. A negative CEO image can sometimes even lead to an 80% loss of sales.
Waiting until the damage is done increases recovery time and cost. That’s why working with proactive reputation management consultants to handle publication and media strategy is important.
First, targeted CEO reputation management can make your company more noticeable and successful while also controlling how your audience perceives your brand.
Second, an effective ORM campaign helps prevent most attacks before they even get to happen.
The main problem is this: a bad personal brand affects more than just sales or new business opportunities. It also has a serious impact on the entire company, affecting hiring, team morale and even creating an employee retention crisis.
According to a CareerBuilder survey, 71% of U.S. most workers won’t apply to a company with negative publicity. Female prospects are even less likely to interview with brands with a bad public reputation.
That same survey revealed that of those with bad press:
- 26 percent of employers took a hit in hiring
- 61% of employers had fewer job offers being accepted
- Fewer enjoyed candidate referrals from employees, resulting in fewer job applications
- A significant number suffered lower employee morale
- Many had higher voluntary employee turnover
- Quite a few experienced a decline in sales
Common Attacks Quality CEO Reputation Management Consultants Can Help Prevent
Did you know ex-employees and unscrupulous competitors often damage your reputation without your knowledge? And unless you’re constantly searching your CEO and brand name online, you really don’t know what customers, leads and employees are finding.
Often, online reputation attacks are malicious, purposely causing damage to an individual, business, or entity through unfavorable, publicly-visible content. Without solid CEO reputation management provided by experienced reputation consultants, reputation threats can create significant, long-term damage to your brand.
And not only are these attacks highly destructive. They’re also often completely unpredictable, coming at any time from anyone (journalists, bloggers, customers, competitors) across the web.
Common reputation attacks include:
- Bad reviews (from former employees, angry customers or unscrupulous competitors)
- Unfavorable articles
- Negative reports
- Critical social media comments
- Anonymous entities
What’s worse: many customers, investors and employees can’t tell the difference between credible reviews and purely fabricated online commentary. While loyal customers can usually overlook a few stumbles, repeated exposure to criticism or one wrong statement can really sink in.
The result? Customers and other stakeholders flee your business in droves, ultimately hurting your image, revenue and long-term success.
Proven Online Reputation Management Tactics For CEOs
At Net Reputation, we take CEO reputation management seriously. Lacking visibility or a positive reputation online can limit your ability to attract investors, putting the future of your company at risk.
To help CEOs embrace their image and build a positive reputation on the web, we apply these five proven tactics:
1. We Help Control Your Online Narrative
The first step in CEO reputation management is searching your name and taking the pulse of your online presence. After all, there is no excuse for not knowing how you look on the web.
And since the brand discussion doesn’t only occur on your website or social pages, we don’t just rely on your Google results. Instead, We also search main review sites, blogs or forums across the web.
Searching your name is one thing. But considering all mentions of your brand offers a bigger picture of online narrative and reputation. While it’s unlikely that usernames will link to your profiles, it’s always better to be safe than sorry.
2. We Identify Main Risks And Opportunities
Equipped with a better sense of your overall online presence, we map out the main risks and opportunities for your digital brand. Reputation repair is a tactical mission to swiftly control or eliminate negative content online.
And while many CEOs are familiar with enterprise risk management, things are bit different when it comes to reputation management.
Occasionally, attempts to hide, remove or censor information can make the situation worse. That’s why we not only identify existing and potential risks, but also pursue solutions and opportunities to maximize and protect your online image.
3. We Help You Optimize Your Existing Content
Want to own your search engine footprint? Optimizing your existing content around the right keyword groups is essential.
And once you optimize your online assets, you’ll need plenty of backlinks to ensure customers and shareholders discover the positive content that tells your story.
Although time-consuming, quality, optimized content is key to CEO reputation management and vital to entrepreneurs building a better reputation online. Unique, well-optimized content sets you apart from rivals and attracts customers to your business.
Other than helping you with content, we also show you how to incorporate keywords. Keywords are phrases potential customers enter into Google when they’re seeking a solution to their problem.
4. We Help Coordinate Your Social Media Presence
Many CEOs don’t see the value in crafting a reputation on social media. But for reputation management to be effective, your social media presence must be active, engaging and delivering your value on a daily basis.
Being active on social is one of the best ways to generate goodwill for your brand. An active social presence helps steer your brand narrative and conversation in the right direction.
Connecting with customers on social media allows you to promote your value, nurture brand loyalty and advertise your services in remarkable ways.
5. We Suppress Unfavorable Search Results And Article
Deleting all negative news and articles about you may be impossible. This is especially true when content rests on well-known news platforms.
Still, suppression and SEO are effective ways to push bad news off of search and out of sight for good.
A study by Moz found 93% percent of users don’t look past Google’s first page. So, when negative content is pushed out of the first 10 results, most searchers will never see it.
Net Reputation’s Reputation Management For CEOs
For many, CEO reputation management can improve brand success, value and income. When implemented well, good reputation management has the potential to turn you into your company’s greatest asset.
Yet, protecting your CEO reputation can hard to do on your own – or even with the help of your in-house marketing team. And that’s where we come in!
We know that building the ideal reputation for you and your brand doesn’t happen overnight. That’s why our management consultants work by your side day and night to strengthen your CEO brand and empower your business for long-term success.