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Reputation Management for Schools: Why It Matters

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How does your school appear online? Reputation management for schools is a necessity. Do you wonder why it matters?

Consider these facts:

Your school's reputation can affect funding and community morale.

Not only that, but a negative reputation will send prospective students looking elsewhere.

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According to Eduventures Research, 80% of college students say they picked their school because of its reputation.

With so much at stake, schools shouldn't leave their image to chance.

Do You Know Your School's Reputation?

These days people learn what they need to know about an organization online. A quick Google search can bring up all kinds of information. It's not only your website and social media profiles that show up in a search.

Other people talk about your school. There could be interviews, professional listings, and more that you don't know about. All these things affect your school's image.

You'll find out quickly what people think about its programs, instructors, and community, by searching your school's name online.

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Next, expand your search and monitor school mentions. Make a search list including things such as:

  • Keywords and topics relating to your school
  • Its programs
  • Instructor names
  • School competitors
  • Backlinks to your school's website

Use this list to monitor your school's mentions. Do people speak highly of your institution? Or are there things to address?

Either way, reputation management for schools will make your online presence more robust. Here's how.

Reputation Management for Schools: Promote the Positive

It's important to refine your keyword and mentions list to weed out the noise. Hone in on specifics that affect your organization. Then you can use social media, your website, and other online platforms to produce positive content.

First, ask a few questions. How can the school reach students? What about prospective students? What makes your community special?

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Highlight things like scholarships, groups, and community events. Likewise, your school's core beliefs and mission should guide your strategy.

Be proactive. Promote student achievements. Feature popular programs and instructors who stand out.

The bottom line is that everything the school does, from marketing to programming, is part of reputation management. That's why it's equally important to consider how to respond to negative feedback. And it's crucial to make a plan.

Reputation Management for Schools: Address the Negative

The idea behind creating positive content is to educate, build authority, and highlight your school's missions and goals. Another key point in reputation management for schools is to address negative comments and feedback.

Your school can suppress negative chatter with plenty of positive content. But the negative should never go unattended. Everyone is watching.

Think of it as a chance to build better relationships. To emphasize the point—over 53% of consumers expect an organization to respond to their concerns within a week. Most are disappointed. Over 63% say they never heard back.

A negative comment could be valid. It's an opportunity to recognize and fix problems. Most times, you can turn the negative into a positive just by showing you care.

If you combine positive content creation and a plan to address the negative, you can build a robust online presence that puts your school in the driver's seat.

Here's How to Address Negative Comments

Administrators don't have to be at the mercy of negative comments and poor reviews. Remember, reputation management for schools is about driving and directing online perception. Make a plan.

People often write reviews when they feel frustrated. Acknowledging their complaint and offering help goes a long way. If you don't avoid them, it shows you want to help.

Publicly respond to the review and address the situation. Take it offline to work out the details.

Work together to find a solution. Then ask them to address the negative review. Research reveals that students who get help with their problems are more likely to recommend your school than those who never had an issue.

On the other hand, negative feedback holds more power if you ignore it. Openly replying will let your audience know the school cares about their concerns.

It's Time to Make a Plan

Consider that auditing, monitoring, and producing new content is a full-time job. And a vital one as well. Who in your organization can head up this task?

You can train administrators to do the job. You'll want to do the following to get started:

  • See where you stand online
  • Devise a plan to monitor what needs to change
  • Develop a new content strategy
  • Set up best practices for addressing negative content

By the same token, students judge a school based on their experience on its website. It's often the first impression. Ensure that all of your pages are user-friendly. Additionally, check for broken links. Also, make sure to optimize all your pages so search engines can find you.

Don't Underestimate the Power of Social Media

Social media is one of the best solutions for reputation management for schools. Produce great content that your audience wants to like, share, and comment on. It will increase your reach.

Likewise, highlight the good news. Join the conversation. Encourage students, staff, and others to share. They can post photos, talk about their accomplishments, and comment on their programs.

Students and staff are your school's ambassadors.

Work with Professionals in Reputation Management

Does reputation management for schools seem daunting? You can hire professionals to get the job done. And they can maintain your school's online image.

Reputation Sciences provides customized reputation management solutions. We start with an online audit. Then we offer insights regarding your school's reputation.

Next, we customize a plan for creating content to get your school ranking higher on search engines. You also receive monitoring, 24 hours a day, to ensure you're on track.

Do you need help managing your school's online reputation?

Reputation Sciences is here to help. We've provided comprehensive reputation management services since 2015.

You can learn more about us online. Or schedule your free consultation by calling 844-810-6755 today!

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