Reputation is important in business because it isn’t just one aspect of your business. It is made up of all of the aspects of your business. It doesn’t affect one area of your business, it permeates and influences all aspects of your business. Your business reputation is an interconnected system that fuels itself. As a result, a good reputation is a must for businesses that want to continue to grow.
Why Your Business Needs a Reputation
People need information in order to form opinions about a business, and they need opinions in order to decide how to relate and interact with it. Having no reputation is just as bad as having a bad reputation. After all, at least businesses with a bad reputation still have a presence. Your business needs a reputation because it puts your business on the map, helps it to stand apart from the competition, and gives people a starting point for engaging with it.
The Importance of a Good Business Reputation
You know that your business needs a reputation, and you know that you want a good reputation, but do you know why you want a good reputation? Of course every business owner wants people to like their business, but feeling good shouldn’t be your only reason for pursuing a positive image. Here are 8 reasons why having a good reputation is important to your small business.
A Good Business Reputation Facilitates Engagement
Your business reputation helps people to determine how to engage with your business, but a good business reputation determines whether people engage with it in the first place. If you have a bad reputation—even if that bad reputation is skewed or misconstrued—you are at an automatic disadvantage with all of your marketing campaigns. It is going to take more effort to get people to trust you, let alone even warm up to you.
Your Business Reputation Is Not 100% In Your Control
While your products, services, and brand are in your complete control, your business reputation is not. Yes, you can do things that build your reputation and influence how people feel about your business, but ultimately you have no control over the minds of outsiders. A good business reputation is important because even if it gives you little influence over the minds of your target audience, it gives you the most influence you will ever have, and you’ll take what you can get.
A Good Business Reputation Gives You a Competitive Advantage
Having an online presence and good products and services is great for getting customers. However, what about getting customers to choose you over your competitors? A good business reputation is important because it can help distinguish you from competitors, and even be the deciding factor in whether someone chooses you over them.
Your Reputation Amplifies Itself
Your business reputation is not only what current and potential customers use to form an opinion about your business; these opinions are that which influence other peoples’ and future customers’ opinions as well. Your business reputation amplifies itself, so having a good one is crucial.
Word of Mouth Marketing is Real
With all of the social media applications, online customer review sites and content platforms available today, people have more encouragement, ability, and convenience than ever before to voice their opinion about a business. Furthermore, people trust the opinions of other people, even if they are total strangers. Having a good business reputation is important because it’s not just you that spreads the word about your business, it is everyone. Plus, with a good business reputation, customers will feel more confident referring you to others.
A Good Reputation Mitigates the Impact of Bad Reviews
Unfortunately, people are typically quicker to share negative experiences than positive ones. Even worse, one negative review can hold as much weight as ten positive ones. Online reviews are powerful, and negative reviews can cause serious damage, but a good business reputation can help mitigate that damage. When your business does encounter difficult customers or unlucky experiences, the negative reviews that result will have less clout. Far less people will adopt or be influenced by that unhappy customer’s opinion if they already have a good opinion of you to start with.
Reputation Is More Than Just Among Your Target Audience
Your business reputation impacts all of your relationships—not just those with your customers, niche markets, or target audience. Your reputation also applies to the people who work for you, invest in you, welcome you into their community, partner with, and provide services for you. A good business reputation is important because it will facilitate growth in your most valuable relationships and will have a ripple effect throughout your entire network.
Good Begets Good
As mentioned in the previous point, a good reputation leads to better relationships in your network. The more people you know, and the more people who like you, the more opportunities you will have to spread the word about your business, which in turn increases the number of people who know and like you. If you do not have a positive image in the eyes of people in your community, it is going to be harder to plan events and carry out the very campaigns that you need in order to build your reputation.
Benefits of a Good Business Reputation
If you want to get more customers, you need more customers to want your business. Having a good reputation is crucial to getting people to pursue, trust, and engage with your business. While people have the last say in what they do and think, your business reputation is a major factor in their decision making. A good reputation benefits a business because it:
• Distinguishes from competitors
• Attracts supporters
• Builds resiliency to non supporters
• Creates opportunities for growth.
Reputation isn’t just about making your business look good. It’s about ensuring that your business survives in the in the larger business ecosystem and continues to grow. So take your reputation seriously, and make having a good reputation your priority.