4 Scary Reasons Why You NEED to Remove Negative Content, Pronto
The internet can be a cruel place.
Have you ever googled your business and discovered thing but criticism on the first page of Google SERPs? Maybe you found a complaint on your Google My Business page from a client who didn’t even come on board!
Sadly, in spite of extensive efforts to build a professional brand image, you might encounter a truckload of haters on the internet who might have been disappointed with your services. Some of the accusations could even be false!
In these circumstances, you MUST take necessary action to remove negative content.
But… Definitions First
First and foremost, what exactly is negative content?
Negative content isn’t defined by negative reviews necessarily, but rather, it refers to pieces of content that slander your company. Publication of negative content could be both legal and illegal.
Here are 3 examples of negative content:
- Plagiarized content (yes, some people still resort to plagiarism)
- Negative reviews based on insufficient evidence or bias
- False and inaccurate news articles
Your Online Reputation Matters
If you have been keeping up with our content, you would know that reviews matter when it comes to building a professional brand image. 90% of users actually do their own research of your company before patronizing your business.
Similarly, according to Reputation X, 65% of users trust what they encounter on Google SERPs. This means that whatever results they get on Google when they research for your company would form their perception of your business. Whether the statements are true or false, people will tend to believe it.
In other words, if all they find are hate sites, you are in deep trouble.
At this point, you might feel like its unfair that a fake review is implicating your business and professional image. Sadly, life’s not fair – that’s just reality.
Why You Need to Remove Negative Content
We have only just skimmed the surface of the impact of negative content. There are various other reasons and ways it can poison your online reputation and affect your business. Read on to find out why you MUST take action to remove negative content.
1. It Could Cause Headhunting Difficulties
Has a job applicant ever changed his mind about joining your company at the last minute?
Maybe he got a better offer, or maybe… He found a negative review of your company on a job recruitment site!
According to Removify’s Mollie Gough, websites like Glassdoor provide a platform for former, current and prospective staff to articulate their opinions and experience with a business. In fact, around 70% of jobseekers check out Glassdoor reviews before making a decision to join a company.
While opinions on these platforms might be biased (or even false), they could still affect your applicants’ perception of your company. These reviews could tarnish your company’s business reputation and misled potential applicants and business partners.
Whether the accusations on recruitment platforms are true or not, they would still reflect poorly on your company. In this sense, it is imperative for you to take action and remove negative content.
It Works Both Ways
On a personal level, negative content could also affect your chances of getting hired. These days where recruiters do their homework on potential candidates, you would want the search results to display only positive attributes and information about you.
Recruiters might find it hard to trust you when all they find are negative reviews.
2. Negative Content Can Tarnish Your Online Reputation
Whether the negative content is based on the truth or mere conjunctures, it would affect your target audience’s perception and dissuade them from choosing your products and services.
When it comes to digital marketing, it is important to gain the trust of your target audience. This means assuring them of the quality of your products and services.
In this case, SEO and reputation management isn’t enough. You would probably have to remove the negative content completely.
3. It Could Harm Client Relations
If your clients are exposed to negative content about your company, it could damage existing relations and cause them to lose trust in your business.
This is especially detrimental if you are just a startup in the growing phase.
Ultimately, if you want to expand your clientele by engaging prospects while retaining existing relations, you need to ensure that your clients hear only positive accounts of your company.
4. Negative Content Has a Snowballing Effect
Have you ever observed how rumours spread?
It starts from one person who passes it on to another, and another and another. Soon, the whole community would come to know of the rumour and believe it – whether it is true or not.
Plus, with social media, word spreads like wildfire.
In even more devastating situations, the truth could be twisted along the way and what you might hear may be far from the reality.
Similarly, the publication of one negative article could have a domino-like effect and spearhead the publication of other negative works online.
Essentially, you would want to stop the very first domino from even falling. So, when you spot one negative article about your company online, you HAVE to take action immediately.
Its Time to Fight Back
Just because you find nothing but negative content on Google SERPs doesn’t mean that you should throw in the towel and accept your failure. You have a chance to fight back. When you have the means to remove negative content and push positive content up on Google SERPs, all hope is not lost.
At the end of the day, reviews still matter. Make sure that you accumulate as many positive reviews as possible and craft a solid content plan that can help you build trust with your target audience.
Take it one step further by having a well-rounded user engagement strategy. Click here to learn about the best ways to engage with your target audience.
Negative content aside, make sure you’re not committing any of these common social media sins.