Best Practices for Improving Brand Reputation in Social Content

Written By: Seth Redmore

On Thursday, June 2, 2016 I had the pleasure of doing a webinar with HFTP on high-level best practices for improving your brand reputation on social and I wanted to share a few of my recommendations. If you want to get the whole picture, you need to be an HFTP member and watch the webinar itself.

There are three sections to the webinar:

  1. What is the single most important thing to do when considering a social media/review strategy?
  2. Maximize your results for effort spent on social and reviews.
  3. What is actionable, and what actions are the most appropriate to take?

I’m going to just focus on #1 – “The Single Most Important Thing.” Here it is: “Start from the goal, not from the data.”

Many people have the temptation to say “Hey, what’s happening on Twitter? We need to respond to ALL THE PEOPLE!”  Stop.

First, you need a good goal. Good goals are SMART: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Time-bound.

Here’s some examples of good goals:

  • Increase average customer ratings by 20 percent by March 1.
  • Reduce time to respond on Twitter by two minutes within two months.
  • Answer a specific question within a month. (This is a special case that I’ll discuss in a second.)

Here’s some examples of poor goals:

  • Answer bad reviews. (No bound on time, no measurability.)
  • Do more tweets. (Measurable, but you’re not measuring the result, and no time bound.)
  • Get 10 million followers. (Not achievable unless your last name is Kardashian, no time bound.)

Let’s discuss the goal of “answering a question.” There are two main types of questions:

  1. Exploratory Questions: “I don’t even know what’s going on, I need to get a feeling of what’s happening before I can even form a reasonable goal or question.”
  2. Constrained Questions: “I want to understand the quantity of X, over Y time, so that I can figure out Z.”

Always put bounds on exploratory analysis. Limit the amount of time you’re going to spend. Limit the amount of data you will look at. Limit the stuff that you’re going to attempt to extract. Always be thinking about the exploration as a way to get to a SMART goal or constrained question.

Once you’ve explored the data, you should have an idea of the specific question you want to answer, again – consider the question in the context of creating a goal. You’ve noticed that you tend to get a lot of poor reviews around your pool. You can take that impression and actually measure it in comparison with the reviews around other aspects of your property (giving you an actual number to work with), then from there, you can decide how to best approach fixing this – or if you fix it at all.

To sum up: If you work with a SMART methodology, you end up with a defensible, measurable process by which you can demonstrate real impact to your business.

Redmore_SethSeth Redmore is CMO at Lexalytics, Inc. Follow Lexalytics, Inc. on Twitter at @lexalytics, Facebook and LinkedIn.

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