Marina Shabalina Shares Insights on Navigating the Online Reputation Waves
Recently I had the privilege of a short talk with Marina Shabalina, the CEO of ADVES, a prominent PR agency known for its expertise in enhancing online reputations. Marina shared her insights on the evolving landscape of reputation management, the growing importance of corporate social responsibility, and the key trends shaping online promotion today.
The Evolution of Corporate Reputation
Marina Shabalina began by reflecting on the evolution of corporate reputation. She highlighted how the methods of shaping and maintaining a company's image have transformed significantly over the past century. In the era of Edward Bernays, a pioneer in PR, traditional media channels like newspapers, television, and radio played pivotal roles in influencing public perception.
Today, the digital realm, particularly the internet and social media, has become the epicenter of reputation management. Marina stressed that a company's online presence is now inseparable from its reputation. Ms. Shabalina emphasized that customers conduct thorough online research before making purchasing decisions, paying close attention to a brand's online profile, reviews, and its behavior on social media platforms.
Marina also noted that a brand's declared values have gained paramount importance in today's landscape. Consumers seek brands that align with their beliefs and principles, making it essential for companies to reflect these values authentically.
Building a Positive Reputation
When asked about the essential steps for establishing a positive reputation, Marina Shabalina emphasized the need for a comprehensive approach encompassing both online and offline spaces. Online efforts involve responding promptly to negative feedback, creating neutral and positive content, and engaging with customers on review websites and social media platforms. This requires collaboration between PR, social media marketing, SEO, SERM, and reputation marketing specialists.
For businesses operating globally, Marina stressed the importance of having a team familiar with regional nuances and international markets. She also noted that the reputation of top executives plays a significant role, with 88% of people believing it is integral to a company's reputation.
Ms. Shabalina acknowledged that reputation management often involves collaboration with business owners or various departments within a company, depending on the specific needs and challenges faced. ADVES, with its international scope, leverages specialized teams and partnerships worldwide to meet diverse reputation management needs.
Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)
Marina Shabalina underscored the growing significance of CSR in the contemporary business landscape. She explained that CSR extends beyond the online realm and has gained prominence, particularly since COVID-19 pandemic. Companies now engage in social and charitable initiatives, aligning their activities with social responsibility to build a positive image.
Emphasis on Reputation for Industrial Enterprises
Marina highlighted that a positive reputation benefits not only product sales but also aspects like employee relations, HR policies, production safety, environmental responsibility, and social responsibility. Industrial enterprises, regardless of their size, can leverage reputation management to strengthen their market presence, expand their influence, and improve their performance.
Addressing Negative Online Content
Marina Shabalina acknowledged the abundance of unverified negative content online. She explained that readers often gravitate toward negative publications, which can be exploited by unscrupulous competitors. In cases where legal action is feasible, ADVES engages legal experts to assess potential remedies. In more delicate situations, they counterbalance negative content with positive content through strategic SEO efforts.
Dealing with Employee Review Websites
Marina discussed their approach to employee review websites, noting that outdated negative content can harm a company's image. ADVES assists clients in addressing such issues by writing complaints, justifying them when appropriate, and engaging with platform moderators to rectify misleading information.
Reputation Management on a Budget
Ms. Shabalina advised that creating content and publications in the media can be effective for enhancing a company's reputation. Even with a limited budget, she recommended starting with external blogs and social media profiles. Engaging with niche journalists and aligning content with the company's values can help create a positive online presence.
Marina cautioned against hastily attempting to create viral content, as it can backfire if not carefully crafted. She stressed the importance of considering the audience's interests and the company's values when developing content.
Marina Shabalina's insights shed light on the dynamic world of online reputation management, emphasizing the need for a strategic, comprehensive, and authentic approach to building and maintaining a positive reputation in the digital age. As the CEO of ADVES, her expertise continues to guide businesses in navigating the complexities of the modern online landscape.
About the Creator
With a deep passion for the inspiring success stories of businessmen and their remarkable achievements, I find myself endlessly captivated by the pace at which they conquer challenges and reach their goals.