Three Ways To Protect Your Small Business From Reputational Harm

Insurance Blog

If you're new to the small business world, you're probably experiencing a simultaneous mixture of excitement and apprehension -- and naturally, you want to do everything in your power to get your business off to a great start. Like many new entrepreneurs, you understand that protecting your business from burglary, flooding, fires, and vandalism is an important part of making sure your business remains stable and solid, so you've got the appropriate insurance policies in place to guard against monetary loss if any of these should become a part of the picture. However, many new business owners fail to realize that one of the most valuable things they can have is a good reputation. 

Reputational harm is one of the least likely reasons for business owners to file an insurance claim, but it also causes the greatest amount of financial damage to businesses that are affected. Most of the damage done to business reputations happens online -- a disgruntled customer may leave a bad review, for instance, or competitors may masquerade as a customers and plant negative reviews of your business on online review sites such as Yelp and Trip Advisor. Here are several strategies you can take to guard against the damage that bad reviews can create for your business. 

Create a Positive Online Presence Using Social Media

If a customer leaves a bad review of your business, there isn't much you can do to get it taken down. However, using social media to create a positive online presence helps to lessen the impact of any bad reviews that may be out there concerning your business. You can do this by maintaining active social media sites that encourage engagement and discussion among customers and potential customers. Always strive to be upbeat, make sure your social media is updated at least once per week. Social media sites that have been neglected not only fail to provide a clear defense against bad reviews, they may give the impression that your business no longer exists. If you're like many small business owners and don't have the time to maintain social media accounts for your company, you can hire a professional to do this job. 

Offer Customer Incentive for Leaving Reviews 

Good reviews will eventually counter the bad ones, so hedge your bets by offering customers incentives for leaving a review. Naturally, it would be unethical to ask them to leave good reviews only, but customers may be more inclined to leave a good review if they've received a token of appreciation from a business. However, it's important to avoid any hint that you may be buying reviews, so make the incentive something everyone gets to participate in, even if they leave a bad review. For instance, you can hold a monthly drawing for a prize among each person who has left a review for your business during that time period -- and make good on it even if the winner has left a terrible review. Who knows -- you might even turn this customer around by being a good sport. 

Be Insured Against Reputational Harm 

The damage reputational harm can cause a small business is no joke, so take it every bit as seriously as threats of fire and flooding when making decisions on business insurance coverage. Businesses that are just starting out may be far more vulnerable to reputational harm than their more established counterparts, and these same counterparts may see your emerging business as a threat to their status on the marketplace. Being covered for reputational harm provides fledgling businesses with the safety net they need to survive in the event that their reputation takes a hit while they're in the process of become established. 


30 August 2017

Preparing for the Future

Ten years ago, I married my best friend in a beautiful, intimate ceremony. My husband and I have been nearly inseparable and we’ve enjoyed this special time in our lives where it has been just the two of us. However, we’re finally ready to have a baby. Because I only work part-time, my husband is the primary financial provider in the family. If something ever happened to him, I wouldn’t be able to instantly support myself and a child. Because my husband worries about an uncertain future, he is considering purchasing a larger life insurance policy. On this blog, I hope you will discover the best types of life insurance policies for young parents to invest in. Enjoy!