It is very refreshing to see someone give good reputation management advice — you know, one that involves really helping your customers and being a good business. This blog post at Imavex, a marketing company out of Indiana, hits the nail right on the head.

Kevin Burzynski talks about his trip to a golf course where the management lost an opportunity to wow him as a customer by not letting go of a $2 charge. That made the difference between him thinking “meh, it is a decent golf course but nothing special” rather than “wow, they’re awesome and I should give them a shoutout on my social network!”

VendAsta’s reputation management platform is built around the principle of putting customers first. As we develop a white label online platform, our focus is on helping your local business clients become better Internet citizens. When you further break it down, you get these components:

Increasing visibility: If customers cannot find a business online, it is losing already.

Monitoring reviews: Ignoring online reviews in today’s market is like ignoring a customer who walks in your door and complains about something.

Monitoring chatter on the web: People have a lot of avenues where they can talk about a business without writing a review. They could use their Twitter accounts, blogs or websites to say things that could affect a business’s reputation. Keeping an eye on this chatter is important so you can make as many customers happy as possible.

Becoming mobile-friendly: Mobile search traffic is soon going to exceed desktop search traffic. This means that if your website is not mobile-friendly in the near future, you are potentially going to upset over 50% of your online visitors.

Taking social media seriously: From the President of the United States to your teenage child, everyone is on social media. That’s where customers spend a lot of time online, and that’s where they get recommendations from friends. Any business that doesn’t come to grips with this fact will have a hard time winning in the digital economy.

Helping customers a.k.a finding leads in real-time: Most people who are active on social media today declare their intent before they take an action. E.g., they say “I’m hungry for pizza” before they pick a phone and place the order. They say “moving to a city” before they hire a moving company. Local businesses can pay attention to these declarations and step in with an offer when necessary. This way, not only do they build a reputation for having good customer service, but also get good word-of-mouth from customers.

These are some of the things that we identify with online reputation management and have built into our system. That is also why our partners have succeeded in selling our platform to over 100,000 small and medium businesses across North America.

(Image courtesy of pen3ya)