Since the whole world and his brother has gone online it is no wonder that managing one’s online reputation is really a big deal. Yet, not many of us are really aware of how to do it, the various processes involved and the basic knowledge behind this endeavor. I mention the word knowledge because in this day and age making an informed decision is even more important than ever before. Marketing, publicity and brand building have always been important exercises for any company but the Internet has made the whole scene more volatile so every step should be taken with caution.

A lot has been said about the revolutionary way the World Wide Web has affected our lives. From our personal, social to professional presence everything has a face on the web now. This makes an impact in every aspect of our lives and more so in the business, whether big or small. It is no longer difficult to gather information about a brand or company, read about its history and performance and most importantly read what others are saying about the brand. Together they make a brand and its online reputation which is so much more than the regular ads and PR exercise that one indulged in before.

It is therefore important to know how to manage this online reputation that can make or break a brand in minutes.

Profile – First and foremost one has to create an impressive online profile, which means that the static and boring websites that you have had so far will no longer do. Go for an interactive and dynamic website that will tell your story through great content and images and pull in the audience right into the heart of your message.

Content – As mentioned above a profile is important and it is only rich content that will make it possible. Being online is no longer a novelty but a necessity and in this crowded market one has to ensure uniqueness to keep the interest alive. That is only possible with rich, useful and meaningful content.

Social – Online marketing has gone a sea change in the last decade. Now the paid ads and the banners are no longer the tools to create the brand but the strong presence on the social networks that does. One has to identify which social platforms works best for their individual business and then set about creating a winning presence there.

Active – But just being on a social platform is not enough. One has to be actively put in regular efforts to be heard and seen at all times. The message and content has to be unique and interesting to hold on to audience attention and create new following. A brand that manages its online reputation well is reflected by the increasing number of people following its rise and progress.

Reviews – There are risks to being online as well and one of these includes the direct consumer reviews. As more and more people look at reviews before they buy or choose a product managing your online reviews is imperative to your success. Ensuring high quality at every step and anticipating problems and working on them can go a long way to manage your online reputation effectively.

Gary Takacs is the founder of The CEO University is a US-based, CEO and Executive Peer Group Organization that creates opportunities for accelerated business growth and personal development  through CEO Peer Group Meetings that are CEO-led, one-to-one mentoring focused on unique business and personal challenges, and purposeful  learning events.