5 Ways CEOs Can Boost Corporate Reputation

Brook Zimmatore | August 1, 2014


Despite the economic quagmire faced by company CEOs in this day and age, client expectations continue to climb the ladder – especially when it comes to corporate reputation. Creating a reputation is easy, boosting a positive reputation is extremely daunting.

CEOs need to keep on their toes when handling the image of their organizations. Whether its negative reviews, dealing with hate sites, or a bad crisis, bad reputation will often negatively affect your corporation, and at times, companies can get caught up with a bad name even after several years of running operations.

But, what are the perks of boosting a reputation? Higher product and service sales, expanded media and press, higher company stock, increase net worth, improve investor relations and everything required to further grow your organization’s bottom line.

There are several ways to go about boosting your corporate reputation in a positive way – so many, in fact, that it can seem like an overwhelming endeavor to make – but there are a few steps that should never be ignored. Read on for the best 5 ways to improve the credibility of your organization.

Remove Rip-Off reports

The founder of the website Rip-Off report has successfully ripped off the credibility of many good corporations. For unspecified reasons, major search engines seem to credit Rip-Off report as a credible site, similar in order to other internet giants such as Wikipedia, The Guardian, etc.

For CEOs, the best solution to get rid of such listings is online defamation attorney services. Search engine giants like Google and Bing do listen to court orders to remove such listings even if the site owner doesn’t.

Court orders can make Google remove the Rip-Off report listings from search results completely so that they never show up again. This is viable compared to traditional reputation management services that can only make listings go far as to page 3 or 4 of search results (they can still be discovered easily in this instance). Credible reputation management firms like Massive can connect you with such attorneys, without asking for commissions.

Remove negative content

Dealing directly with a reputation crisis is the best course of action. In most instances, CEOs face crisis in the form of defamatory content that can result in a spew of negative search results in Google and other search engines.

Simple cases can usually be done by yourself or the internal reputation department of your company. However, heavy defamation requires submitting press releases and blog posts, filling up social networks and corporate blogs with unique content, asking partners and business to feature company profiles on their websites, and a lot more.

The effectiveness of these measures are determined by the resources you apply towards them. CEOs with shortage of resources to take these actions and sync them in an appropriate manner can utilize reputation management agencies that have a high success rate in their results portfolio. This is also a great way to free up resources to focus on other important tasks such as handling customer service and corporate communications.

Encourage transparency

Honesty and openness are two critical factors that influence how your company image is perceived by its clients. These two factors especially impact your reputation as a credible, trustworthy business.

An infographic shows how Nestle tried to censor its negative reputation and how it made matters worse for the company. The company took 50 percent longer to return its image to pre-crisis levels, possibly due to its lack of response to consumer concerns, while other companies compared in the image to Nestle’s approach recovered faster because of being honest and upfront about their actions.

Most clients will be willing and confident to deal with corporations that allows them to feel their concerns are being taken seriously – and there are no surprises behind honesty. Be transparent in your client and investor relationships, PR, and throughout the communications of your company. You can also identify reputation attacks with solutions like Strixus ClearView and respond in a transparent way; an early response goes a long way in bringing back the positive sentiment about a company after a reputation backlash.

Turn employees into brand advocates

When employees volunteer for something, they still want to benefit from it, whether it’s resume-building or self-fulfillment. Let your company’s image benefit by making staff members advocates of your corporate brand which directly affects your corporate reputation.

After all, a corporation can devote unlimited business advertising proclaiming its client-focused, but nothing conveys this more clearly than the reception greeting and the client service hotline. Ultimately, identifying what increases the value of a corporate brand and then helping employees to become advocates who live and breathe ‘the company promise’ results in a great boost for the company’s reputation.

Include advocacy as a core element in your company’s working culture so that it gets easier to share important communications and it’s more likely that employees will tune it. Once they do, share your brand’s image, story and reputation and let them work with you to define the way forward.

Keep innovating

CEOs who don’t keep up with technological and corporate advances and often get too comfortable with their approach tend to have the shortest positive reputation building tenures. The key to keep building and boosting a robust company reputation is to think ahead and adapt to industry changes.

A research paper focusing on the impact of research and development of corporate reputation how the innovative capacity of companies can have a positive impact on their reputation in all aspects of the business.

Findings from the Industry Reputation Study 2013 also reveals that innovation drives reputation. A prime example is Apple; the Cupertino Company has given a major boost to its reputation over the years, courtesy of continuous innovation that leads to development of new smartphones, tablets and smartwatches. Food for thought.

How is your digital wall representing you and your reputation? Are you taking any steps to boost your current reputation?

CEO / Co-Founder
Brook Zimmatore is the Co-Founder & CEO at Massive.