Online Presence Management: A Simple Guide

The average person spends over eight hours a day online, which translates to about 128 days a year. Shocking, right? When you think about it, though, it really shouldn’t be… 

Almost everything we do involves the internet. Work-related research, catching up with family on social media, the latest Netflix binge—they all require the world wide web.

What does this mean for you, a small business owner, freelancer, or marketing professional? It means that, in all likelihood, potential customers will discover your brand online before they ever walk into your store or hear your ad on the radio. This is important!

To succeed in 2021 and beyond, you need to do a little online presence management for your brand. Keep reading and we’ll show you how!

What is Online Presence Management?

Online presence management is the process of managing a brand’s online footprint so as to ensure the general sentiment surrounding it is as positive as possible.

This includes updating brand-owned websites and social media profiles, generating and responding to online reviews, and even hosting virtual events. Basically, if it has to do with your brand’s reputation online, it falls into online presence management.

How to Properly Manage Your Online Presence

Proper online presence management will lead to a better online reputation, more website traffic, and, ultimately, more paying customers for your brand. The question is, how do you manage your brand’s online presence effectively? These tips will help:

1. Your Website

Before you do anything else, assess your brand’s website.

Does it invite potential customers in and make them want to hang out for a while? If it’s badly designed, difficult to navigate, and filled with subpar copy, the answer is probably no.

When revamping your website, make sure it’s optimized for mobile devices and includes:

  • Stellar Design and Imagery
  • Accurate and Relevant Content
  • Positive Customer Testimonials
  • Clear Calls-to-Action (CTAs)
  • Strategic SEO Elements

To build an effective website, you have to know who your target audience is. That way you can create something that draws the right people in and speaks to them the right way.

Let’s pretend, for example, that your company sells custom-built motorcycles. Since 81% of motorcycle riders are male, you probably don’t want to build a pink website and write blog posts about the “most romantic motorcycle rides in the USA”.

Why? Because these things won’t appeal to the vast majority of motorcycle fanatics, AKA the target audience. But of course, you need to research your own customers to determine what they want from your brand. Then do what you can to give them these things.

2. Social Media

Social media is an important business tool that allows brands to connect with their customers directly and build lasting relationships with them. Unfortunately, it can be difficult to post consistently when you’re busy completing other business-related tasks.

But here’s the thing: your brand’s social media profiles play an important role in your online presence management strategy. As such, they shouldn’t be ignored.

Do your best to post quality content on sites like Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn. Then respond to the comments you receive back. This is vital! Your social channels should spark engagement between you and your audience. Don’t use them as one-way message boards.

What does “quality content” look like? It depends on your brand, but here are a few ideas:

  • Links to relevant articles about your industry
  • Funny videos and memes about your industry
  • Glowing testimonials from happy customers
  • Sales, discount offers, and other money-savers
  • Employee spotlights and work-in-progress updates

The key is to publish these kinds of things on a regular basis. That doesn’t mean you have to post twice a day, seven days a week. But it does mean that you should find a posting schedule that works for your brand and do your best to stick to it.

Pro Tip: There are hundreds of social media sites on the internet. Do NOT join all of them. Find the ones your target audience uses the most. Then engage them on these platforms only. It’s better to be consistent on one or two sites than it is to be inconsistent on many.

3. Online Reviews

Your brand’s online reviews are an important aspect of your online presence management.

Think about this: 89% of consumers read reviews before purchasing a product. And 79% of shoppers say they trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations.

What does this mean for your brand? Reviews matter a lot to your target audience, which means they should matter a lot to you, too. Use this four-step strategy to generate more reviews for your business and increase the power of the reviews you already have:

  • Respond to Every Review: 97% of people who read reviews, read responses to reviews as well. By responding to every online review your brand receives, good and bad, you’ll show new potential customers that your brand cares about them. 
  • Ask Customers For Reviews: The best way to generate more online reviews is to ask your customers to leave them. Recent studies suggest that 70% of customers will leave a review if a brand asks them to. Don’t miss this opportunity!
  • Display Your Positive Reviews: Online reviews are powerful, which is why you should use them to propel your business forward. Display glowing reviews on your website and post them on social media. This will improve your online reputation.
  • Use the Feedback You Receive: Finally, learn from the reviews you get. Do many of your customers have the same complaints? Fix these things. Do most reviewers mention a specific feature they enjoy using? Keep providing it.

If you want to succeed at online presence management, you have to learn how to generate positive reviews at a consistent clip and use them effectively.

4. Search Engine Optimization

Search engine optimization is important for online presence management as well.

If you’re not familiar with the term, search engine optimization, better known as SEO, is the process of improving a website so that it ranks higher in search engine results.

The higher your website ranks for specific keywords, the more traffic you can drive to your site and the better reputation your brand will have. But, of course, getting high rankings is difficult—especially for high-volume keywords. This is because competition is fierce.

Don’t let that deter you! Use the following three tips to improve your website ranking:

  • Optimize For Keywords: Keywords are the words and phrases that people type into search engines to find information. If you were looking for new shoes, for example, you might type “Men’s Black Shoes” into Google. You need to discover the keywords your target audience uses. Then include them on your brand’s website.
  • Start a Company Blog: Blogging is an excellent way to improve your website’s SEO efforts. By targeting specific keywords in your blogs, you give your site extra chances to rank in search results for those terms. Just remember to avoid keywords-stuffing, AKA including as many keywords as possible without regard for flow and readability.
  • Google My Business: If you run a local business, then you definitely need a Google My Business profile, which will help your website rank in Google search results. Share as much information as you can in your Google listing, including your company’s name, address, contact information, hours of operation, and pictures.

SEO is a long game. Don’t expect to publish one blog and automatically start ranking for its chosen keyword. You need to put in time and effort. But if you do, you’ll reap the rewards.

5. Virtual Events

Finally, you can host virtual events such as webinars and industry conferences to improve your online presence. Doing so is one of the best ways to engage your audience!

There are a few different things you need to host a successful virtual event. They are the right piece of software, valuable content to share, and an audience to market your event to. Let’s take a look at each of these things in greater detail:

The Right Software

You need software to host a virtual event. There are plenty of options available to you. But none of them can compete with ClickMeeting in terms of usability and power.

With our software, you’ll be able to host intimate get-togethers and mega gatherings for 1,000+ people. No matter which you choose you’ll have access to audience engagement features like custom branding, screen sharing, in-app chat, polls and surveys, social media streaming, virtual event recording, and detailed analytics.

The best part is, you can try ClickMeeting for free right now. Sign up for a free 30-day trial to see if our software is right for your needs. After that, prices start as low as $25 a month.

Valuable Content

Why should people attend your virtual event? The only correct answer is because they’re going to learn something valuable from you that they didn’t know before. It could be a new skill, a new process, a new way to save money on your products—anything really.

Ask yourself this question: “What does my audience want from my brand?” Then deliver this to them during your webinar or virtual conference.

For example, people come to ClickMeeting to get access to the best webinar and virtual event software on the market (see above.) If we were to host a virtual event of our own, we could teach people how to host amazing webinars with our platform. Or how to market a virtual event and make sure people show up. Or how to save 25% on a subscription to ClickMeeting.

You can’t use virtual events to improve your online presence without valuable content.

An Audience

Who is your virtual event for? If you don’t know who your target audience is, it will be extremely difficult for you to market your event and get people to come.

When you know who your audience is, you can start promoting your virtual event to them via email, social media, blogs on your website, paid ads on Google and Facebook, flyers around your hometown—the way you promote really depends on your unique event and audience.

The point is, take a moment to identify your audience. Then find ways to reach these people.

3 Tips For Online Presence Management

1. Aim For Consistency

First, make sure your brand is consistent across all platforms, from your website to your social media channels to the virtual events you and your team host.

If a potential customer visits your website, then clicks on a link to your Instagram page, they shouldn’t feel like they’re looking at two different companies. Color schemes, tone of voice, content types, etc. should be similar—not exactly the same, but similar.

This kind of consistency builds trust between companies and their customers. Since it’s extremely hard to make sales without trust, you should definitely keep this in mind.

2. Increase Your Activity

Once you get the hang of online presence management, look to increase your activity.

When we say “increase your activity” we mean, post more on social media, publish more blog posts, host more virtual events, and otherwise engage with your audience more frequently.

Doing so will give you additional opportunities to build relationships, prove your authority, boost your brand’s reputation, and turn strangers into paying customers.

3. Ask For Feedback

Last, but certainly not least, ask your customers how to improve your online presence. This is especially important if your brand’s reputation is down in the dumps.

But you can’t just ask, you have to act. When you receive feedback, use it to improve your brand’s online presence. Make the changes your customers suggest. Then measure the results. Did it work? If so, keep doing what you’re doing. If not, go back to the drawing board.

Wrapping Up

Online presence management is essential in 2021.

If you don’t work hard to build and maintain your brand’s reputation on the internet, your company will never be as successful as you want it to be. 

Fortunately, online presence management isn’t as difficult as you might think it is. Yes, it will take effort. But if you implement the tips and tricks we shared with you in this article, your online presence will improve—we guarantee it. Good luck!

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