At BOALT, we take the guesswork out of navigating the ever-changing world of establishing your brand online.

Review sites can be a powerful way to elevate your brand. But left unmanaged, they can devalue your reputation.

We helped build a mobile app that allowed a major automotive retailer to solicit positive reviews from their customers while they were in the store.

We’ll start by telling you something most marketers won’t, because it works against their ability to sell you on a management opportunity. Taking charge of what people are saying about you isn’t about making sure your business is listed on every possible review site or network. Yes, in a lot of cases, without your control, customers will review you on networks you don’t manage. This is an inevitability, especially for large brands with many franchises and locations. But one thing that most companies don’t consider is that the more review networks you’re listed on, the more potential exposure you have to unflattering reviews that could negatively impact your search marketing.

Focus on the review networks that will give you the most visibility and provide more ways to increase your SEO marketing efforts.

In 2010, Adam Boalt was invited to speak on a panel at the J.D. Power and Associates Internet Roundtable on the subject of Brand Reputation best practices.

Joining in every review site that exists only gives your audience more opportunities to voice their displeasure. The key thing to remember is that most satisfied customers don’t necessarily feel the need to endorse your business, whereas most spurned ones will feel motivated to hurt you any way they can. It’s just human nature. If you’re working with a third-party provider that is charging to set you up on every review network, selling you on the idea that it’s part of some SEO strategy, they’re right. Unfortunately, that strategy could have an effect you don’t want.

Procuring positive reviews can have rich search benefits.

The strategy we advocate most strongly for is creating an awareness program with your employees. Teach them how they should communicate with their customers to solicit positive reviews on valuable networks that can produce the results you want for your reputation and help drive traffic in ways unimaginable with your search engine marketing efforts.

The combination of positive reviews and a solid search marketing strategy can help you increase your click-thru-rate (CTR) and drive more sales.

Soliciting positive reviews is a part of a long tail strategy that can help you close the loop over time with your sales and brand strategy. We find that it’s more important to educate you on how to leverage brand reputation as opposed to approaching it in simplistic terms of just managing small conversations with disgruntled customers on Facebook and Twitter. Let us help you pave the way and take control over your brand reputation online.

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