B2B Reputation Management: 7 Effective Tools

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Tags: reputation management

What is the article about?

  • We will tell you the difference between working with online reputation in B2B and B2C segments.

  • Let’s give an answer to the question – what do potential B2B customers want to see when they are looking for information about you.

  • Let’s show what information influences the client’s decision-making.

  • Let’s take a look at 7 effective tools that will show your level of professionalism, solve the problem with trust and help maintain a favorable information background.

Who is this article useful to?

  • ORM specialists, especially in the B2B segment.
  • Reputation, Advertising and External Communications Directors.
  • For marketers – for interacting with the audience, assessing consumer experience.

Online reputation management is essential for businesses to differentiate themselves from competitors and build trust with their customers. The problem is that the tools for working with reputation in B2C are not suitable for working with the information background in B2B. What are the differences?

1) B2B has a narrowly segmented audience with high demands.

2) B2B has long purchasing cycles that are getting longer and more complex. 58% of customers said their decision making process took longer in 2017 than in 2016 (data from Business2Community, 2017). Therefore, feedback and image are especially important.

3) Standard PR tools do not work without a good information background on the Internet, from which it is clear what the company is doing and what its advantages are.

How is reputation management in B2B different from B2C?

Let’s take a closer look at the differences that determine the choice of reputation management tools.

1. Lecture hall… B2B demonstrates a classic set of parameters for a narrow audience. As a rule, this is the age of 40-60, higher education, high level of income, professionalism, high business qualities.

Expert opinion

Anastasia Pakhomenkova, Project Manager for Reputation Management at Ashmanov & Partners:

Paxomenkova1.jpg

“B2B has a professional interest in a particular industry. These people follow fashionable status trends, attributes and accessories are important for them. When making decisions, they trust the recommendations of mid-level professionals and advertisements in reputable publications. “

2. Communication style… In B2B, you are expected to have a business approach, not entertainment, unlike B2C. You need to know the specifics of production, terminology, details of professional activities.

Example: in the VKontakte or Instagram B2C community, you can reply to comments with pictures or funny gifs. This does not work in B2B, you need a professional tone of communication.

3. Tasks… In B2C, the main task is usually to respond to the negative, to reduce the share of negative references. In B2B, the main thing is the image and increasing recognition among a narrowly segmented audience. In B2B, more money is usually spent on reputation management.

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Expert opinion

Anastasia Pakhomenkova, Project Manager for Reputation Management at Ashmanov & Partners:

Paxomenkova1.jpg

“Reviews and issues on the Internet are becoming more and more important, even for the industry, from year to year. People get all the information about the company’s activities by searching, without contacting the company itself. “

What influences the choice of customers in B2B?

B2B expects two qualities from the counterparty: professionalism and ease of interaction.

What a B2B customer expects from you

Professionalism should be shown through any platforms (see diagram) where you can receive publications about yourself, reviews, comments, etc. For example, a manufacturing company writes articles in Yandex Zen about the secrets of the production of valves, the choice of flanges, etc. These are narrow topics, but they resonate with a specialized audience that is targeted by B2B. You should communicate in detail, in detail, with production terms and details.

Ease of communication and convenience of interaction is achieved through the company’s website and its pages or groups in social networks. On them you can quickly get all the necessary information and interact in the future.

A common mistake is to start with PR tools such as charity or sponsorship, conference attendance, awards, speeches, press releases, media interviews. In B2B, they do not work until the idea of ​​professionalism and ease of communication with online tools is formed.

Expert opinion

Anastasia Pakhomenkova, Project Manager for Reputation Management at Ashmanov & Partners:

Paxomenkova1.jpg

“B2B has a professional interest in a particular industry. These people follow fashionable status trends, attributes and accessories are important for them. When making decisions, they trust the recommendations of mid-level professionals and advertisements in reputable publications. “

7 effective tools for managing a company’s reputation

1. Articles Is the most popular tool. In 2019, 81% of B2B companies reported that their blog was critical to lead generation (according to Nurture). What matters is not the number of articles, but their quality and adherence to SEO rules. For publication, use Yandex.Zen, specialized sites (such as Exkavator.ru, Wood.ru, etc.), website, press releases, social networks)

2. Review sites… Register official representatives on large traditional sites (Otzovik.com, Irecommend.ru, Yandex.Market, Zoon.ru, etc.). This will help solve customer problems and even contact administrators to remove a negative review if there are grounds for this (for example, you offered compensation to an unhappy customer with a comment on the review, but he did not respond to the offer). By the way, here you can see how to recognize fake negativity.

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“67% of B2B customers want to see both negative and positive reviews.” G2 Crowd, 2017


Another type is professional reviews like cataloxy.ru, postavshhiki.ru, stroyportal.ru, etc. They are often in distant positions in search results, but this is not a reason to neglect them. So, in 2019, 92% of B2B customers studied review sites before making decisions (according to G2 Crowd).

3. HR reviewers… In the absence of feedback about a company or a product, customers are highly likely to study the reviews of your employees on HR reviews like pravda-sotrudnikov.ru, neorabote.net, otrude.net, antijob.net, etc. Negative reviews are very difficult to remove here, and sites track the publication of artificial reviews.

An example of a review on a otzovik

Alternatively, create a social media group for your employees. She will be present in the search results and show that life in the company is not at all bad.

4. Forums – a tool that should be used in the following areas:

  • Transport (transportation, spare parts, special equipment, roads, airplanes, water transport, etc.)

  • Electronics, software

  • Construction (of any scale – from private houses to infrastructure facilities and residential complexes)

  • Agriculture

  • Flower business

Forums are a great way to establish yourself for a small company. How to build a reputation for a young brand can be found here. Today, unfortunately, the official representative of the company is a rather rare occurrence on the forums.


“70% of B2B Clients watch video before making a decision.” Blue Corona, 2019


five. Video it is advisable to use different types, approaching them creatively. For example, official videos created by the company. Or video testimonials from employees that will help improve the brand if there is a lot of negative feedback from employees. Don’t neglect usage videos where the brand is featured but not the main topic.

B2B doesn’t necessarily have to spend a lot of money on video production, as customers want to make choices, not have fun.

6. Map services are often the only place where there are reviews for B2B companies. You should create cards in Yandex.Maps, Google.Maps and 2GIS services – the latter is especially popular in the regions.


“More than 50 million users visit Yandex.Maps every month.” Yandex, 2019


7. Wikipedia appears on the first search page in half of all searches (data from Perficient, 2015). This tool is suitable for large backbone enterprises, companies with a history, holdings, people. Remember, they don’t like ads. In addition, in connection with the publication on Wikipedia, a discussion of the negative past of the company may begin, and pages with such a discussion may be shown in the search at about 12-13 positions.

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Prove that it will be easy with you

Here, as we have already said, there are only 2 tools – social networks and the company’s website.

1. Among social networks, the most popular are Facebook, VKontakte, Instagram, Odnoklassniki, Twitter. It is impossible to predict which social network will be most effective for you. Use one title for pages across all social networks, add widgets through which you can view products, and create a chatbot. This speeds up the acquisition of information and builds a good reputation.


“In B2B, 75% of shoppers and 84% of executives use social media information to make purchasing decisions.” Forrester, 2017


Content on social media should be written more concisely and simply than in articles or blog posts, and should be nicely designed. Organize live broadcasts to answer popular questions. Indicate email, instant messengers, and phone number. Some people prefer to write, but others like to call: give them all opportunities to interact. Use social media to work with negativity.


“One bad site experience reduces the likelihood of a return visit by 88%.” Blue Corona, 2019


2. It is important to have a chat and a section with reviews on the site. Configure the latter so that it is easy to find. Submit written testimonials, printed / handwritten thank-you photos, customer photos with comments.

Reputation Tips

Conclusions:

1) In B2B, it is necessary to communicate with the audience in a professional language, operate with data and facts. You need to show that you are professionals and that it is easy and convenient to interact with you. The number of publications, reviews and other forms of online presence should not prevail over quality.

2) The cycle of decision making in B2B is lengthening. Amid the coronavirus pandemic, when people receive more and more information via the Internet, online reputation comes to the fore. Create a favorable information background in classic reviews, professional communities, social networks.

3) Do not use offline tools until the necessary online reputation has been established. Direct the work to both potential contractors and company employees.

Minina Tatiana, copywriterThe article was prepared by Tatiana Minina. Professional journalist, copywriter. Hobbies: journalism, text, SEO, sports.

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