When What They Say is True

Here is a common question for online reputation management firms:

“What if all the negative online information about people and companies is true?” Our advice: Acknowledge the truth. Share how you are taking steps to address the issue, or have addressed it. If you are a successful CEO but spent part of your high school years overcoming a substance abuse problem, don’t wait for commentary about it to surface online. Approach an online publication and offer to write a piece for them about how you turned things around – and how others can, too. Look for an agent to get you a book deal.  Donate the proceeds to an appropriate charity.

If it is a company issue, present the facts. Admit the problem. Share what you plan to do to fix it. And follow up with examples of how you are doing that. Invite your customers’ input by setting up an online platform where they can contribute ideas, commentary and feedback. For public companies, this will mean convincing your legal team that the concept has merit.

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