Marketing Pilgrim's Reputation Channel

Marketing Pilgrim's Reputation Channel is sponsored by Trackur.

Target Learns Exactly Why it Should Engage Bloggers

Last week I watched the blog storm surrounding Target’s decision not to talk to a blogger, because it only focused on traditional media outlets.

Today, I see the story has made the New York Times. Yo, Target, is that traditional enough for ya?

“Unfortunately we are unable to respond to your inquiry because Target does not participate with nontraditional media outlets,” a public relations person wrote to ShapingYouth.

“This practice,” the public relations person added, “is in place to allow us to focus on publications that reach our core guest,” as Target refers to its shoppers.

Word of the exchange quickly spread and the blogosphere did not appreciate the slight. “Target doesn’t participate in new media channels?” asked the Web site for the Word of Mouth Marketing Association. Target “dismisses bloggers” commented the blog for Parents for Ethical Marketing. “Ahem! So bloggers don’t count!” Ms. Jussel chimed in on ShapingYouth.

Why Your Google Reputation Can Hurt Your Career

Canada’s Globe and Mail takes an in-depth look at how your Google reputation can cost you that new job, and I was happy to offer my advice for the piece.

More and more recruiters are turning to Google as part of their due diligence efforts for hiring decisions. The article quotes a couple of incidents where potential employers backed away from offering a job, once they Googled the candidate.

One Toronto-based hirer, who asked not to be named, said that a search of a promising candidate’s name turned up a dating advertisement posted by the applicant that contained “sex-related information that could be seen as bizarre.” When she revealed what she had found to a senior executive in her office, he told her that the applicant “wouldn’t be a good fit for their corporate culture.” As a result, the company discarded the candidate’s application.

Online Reputation Management Advice via Podcast

As I mentioned yesterday, Roger Bauer was kind enough to invite me on to his show The Bauer Pauer Hauer to discuss Radically Transparent and online reputation management.

We chatted for almost an hour and discussed:

  • how to monitor your reputation online
  • what to do first, when you discover your reputation is under attack
  • how to respond to an attack and seek resolution
  • how to clean up your Google reputation

If you didn’t get to listen to the live show, you can listen at your leisure, thanks to this “Managing Your Online Reputation” podcast.

Ripoff Report Ripping Off Those Reported?

Chris Bennett of 97th Floor is being unfairly trashed by Ripoff Report, and he’s not the only one.

In case you’re not familiar with Ripoff Report–you may wish to pray that you never have to be familiar with them–the site exists as a platform to allow consumers to air their gripes, complaints, and allegations about a business. Unfortunately, Ripoff Report appears to exist purely to make money from the various negative postings and it’s a rare occurrence to see something negative removed–even when resolved.

Both Chris and Rand Fishkin provide an excellent breakdown of some of the questionable tactics used by Ripoff Report–each concluding that Rip Off Report is doing its best to make money off of negative reviews.

Unfortunately, when you help individuals and business with their, it’s very common to see a Ripoff Report listing for them. Sure, you could argue that the company deserved the complaint–that may be true in some cases. But I’d challenge you to show me evidence that Ripoff Report is completely unbiased and willing to remove, or substantially update negative complaints that were subsequently resolved.

Five Steps for Recovering from an Online Reputation Crisis

>> Check out Andy Beal’s online reputation management book and online reputation monitoring tool. <<

It has been an interesting week for blogger faux pas. Search Engine Land found itself taking flak for it’s sensational post about obtaining links from Wired’s wiki. Meanwhile, Gizmodo suffered at the hands of its peers for its CES television monitor prank. Both serve as examples of how it’s sometimes impossible to look ahead to the future and determine what the consequences of our actions will be. It’s this lack of prophetic wisdom that pretty much guarantees that despite your best efforts to protect your online reputation from harm, at some point your good name will come under fire.

How you handle the fall-out will pretty much determine how your stakeholders–in this case, readers and fellow bloggers–will adjust their perception of your brand.

1-800 Contacts Sues Over Keywords Again

1-800-Contacts is suing again. They filed suit against LensWorld.com this past Tuesday, Jan. 8th. Competitor LensWorld.com bid on the keyword “1800Contacts” so when someone types it into the search engine, a LensWorld ad would show. Nothing new here (this is a routine practice in many industries, with both sides participating).

1-800 Contacts lost a case against another rival WhenU.com on the same issue. This set a precedent and following rulings were that keyword advertising isn’t considered a trademark violation. 1-800-Contacts is based in Utah and that’s where the irony starts. 1-800-Contacts was part of the opposition this past April to a controversial law to ban bidding on competitor’s keywords. Even though they were guilty of the same. The law was dropped the day it was to go into affect after Utah lawmakers had some discussions with search engines. In the meantime it was an embarrassment, as is this new development.

Facing a Reputation Crisis, Network Solutions to Change Front-Running Practice

As we reported yesterday, Network Solutions has been in a lot of deep-water after many people discovered the company was guilty of "front-running"–the practice of registering a domain name after someone has checked on its availability.

Today, CNET is reporting the company is reeling from the backlash and has announced they will make changes to their practice.

One change is that the company will offer only an "under construction" page for sites that it has reserved…Another change coming soon is that Network Solutions will register domains only when people search for domains from the company’s home page. No longer will it do so when people use the company’s Whois search page.

It make you wonder what went through the minds of the executive that make these reputation-risky business decisions–probably just dollar signs.