-by Reputation Maxx
When it comes to choosing the right fit for hiring an online reputation management firm to represent a small or large timeshare resort or travel club, there are several warning signs to be wary of.
It is no secret that consumers are smarter – and more wary – when spending their hard-earned money these days, especially in the timeshare and travel club industries. Hundreds of resorts and travel clubs are struggling with rescission rates because of negative press and a less-than-perfect online presence. Cancellation rates are higher than ever before resulting from damaged online landscapes.
With so much online negativity and name calling, the emergence of the timeshare and travel club online reputation management industry has been a lifesaver for many resorts and clubs around the world. Even for those resorts and clubs that do not currently have a negative online presence, experts agree that building up a positive online landscape with assets that are controlled by the company is the best way to protect against unfortunate occurrences in the future.
“Five years ago, there was hardly anyone doing online reputation management in general, let alone for an industry as specialized as the timeshare and travel club industry is,” said former timeshare project director and current CEO of Reputation Maxx, Walter Halicki. “Now, there’s hundreds of companies out there claiming that they know what they’re doing when it comes to online reputation management, but you need to be careful.”
The experts at Reputation Maxx have years of experience in both the timeshare industry as well as the online reputation management industry. In order to better assist resorts in choosing the best reputation management firm to represent their property, Reputation Maxx is providing these tips.
1. Beware those who claim to do it all.
Online reputation management and especially online reputation management for timeshare properties is a highly specialized industry that is always evolving and growing. Search engines like Google constantly come out with new updates that change the way that content is indexed, how pages are ranked on search engine results and more.
As more and more companies emerge claiming to be “experts” at online reputation management, it’s important to know how long the firm has been in business. If they opened just 90 days ago, it’s important to question whether the company truly understands how Google and it’s search engines work, or how they will be prepared for the next time that an update comes out.
“Obviously, no one knows what the Google update will be or how much it will affect the way that things are currently indexed, except for Google, until the update comes out,” said reputation expert and President of Reputation Maxx, Walter Halicki, Jr. “We have a team in place that immediately goes into action as soon as the update comes out so that we can adapt as quickly as possible.”
Knowing why and how something works in the field of online reputation management is of the upmost importance to running a successful campaign.
“It’s a full-time job just keeping up-to-date and on the cutting edge of what’s going on with all the different search engines and best practices for getting content and profiles seen on the Internet,” said reputation expert and CEO of Reputation Maxx, Walter Halicki. “If a company claims to be able to offer reputation management on top of several other services, you might want to question whether they really have expertise in any of these areas.”
“It’s incredible how many people think that they can do online reputation management because they smell the money in the industry,” said Halicki. “It’s a lot more than press releases and Facebook.”
2. Look for a firm that understands the industry.
Escalating rescission rates due to a poor Internet presence, tour costs skyrocketing and marketing the timeshare resort properly are all issues that are very specific and very targeted in the industry. While some resorts may opt to go with an online reputation management firm that seems to have a larger presence, this might not always be the best choice.
“Think about it…would you want your realtor as your dentist too?” asked Halicki. “Vacation ownership properties need to make sure that they find an online reputation management firm that understands the struggles and the triumphs of the industry as a whole, as well as the issues that resorts face on a day-to-day basis.”
3. Offering white-labeled monitoring platforms for outlandish fees.
One of the hottest trends in the online reputation management industry today is that of brand monitoring. Brand monitoring is basically is service that many companies provide that highlights all of the places a company has been mentioned on the Internet. In the case of those in the timeshare and travel club industry, this can include TripAdvisor, social media, RipOff Reports and much more.
One of the most well known and widely-used services for brand monitoring is that of Revinate, which offers social media monitoring for resorts around the world for about $300/month. This easy-to-use service aggregates all of the mentions of a company online in one place so that the resort can respond to the mentions accordingly. This service in itself is not a scam – the scam comes into play when other companies white-label this service as their own and sell it to resorts for $4,500/month.
Some companies even claim that online reputation management and brand monitoring are one in the same. This is simply not true. Brand monitoring detects the problem, but the solution to that problem is the active approach that online reputation management takes.
4. Act sooner, rather than later.
The number one folly that timeshare reputation management firm Reputation Maxx sees that vacation ownership properties make time and time again is that they simply wait and do not act on negative posts once they appear. The longer they wait to take action, the more powerful these negative posts become, because they are clicked on and visited time and time again. Once any sort of threat to a company’s online reputation is detected, action should be taken immediately.
For more information about the timeshare reputation management solutions that Reputation Maxx offers, visit http://www.reputationmaxx.com.
SOURCE: Reputation Maxx