Brand reputation, brand defamation and brand investigations – how social media is changing the legal brand landscape.

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Brand Reputation, or the reputation of a brand is seen as “what people feel about your company when you are not around”. It may be defined as the way that the brand is seen by the public, its customers and clients and other businesses.

There is no doubt any business owners or managers’ feel that social media has changed the way in which businesses can advertise or market themselves but few would have been able to predict the ways that social media has changed, and continues to dramatically affect the way that branding a legal practice is performed and how quickly a reputation can be changed or lost. Social media effects experienced by legal firms can be broadly classified into two heads, Brand Defamation and Brand Investigations. Both these facets can be devastating for any business owner on social media. But what are they?

Every business using social media should be up and ready to face criticism if they do not live up to the promises. Social media is after all a platform for mutual exchange of thoughts. Business owners are heavily tapping into social media for its word of the mouth sales power. While a good feedback can do world of wonders for your business, adverse criticism can significantly dent online marketing prospects. Business owners should take justified criticism as a challenge. But, when there are unfair rants, statements or comments ruining the prospects of your brand there is every need to take legal steps. Law firms can sue others intentionally defaming your brand on social media. The person posting such derogatory comments can be taken to court and asked to prove the points.

A Business logo is an essential emblem for your brand. Many people will recognise your law firm through the logo. In the recent past there have been many instances when the logo of a well reputed law firm has been minutely tweaked by less known names to drive business. This is an unlawful practice and can create severe harm for your business prospects. If there is any issue of logo misuse, then it should be resolved swiftly. Otherwise your loyal clients will be driven to another site, harming your reputation.

Brand reputation as mentioned before can be significantly hampered by irresponsible comments from internal staff, clients or close business competitors. Most law firms are tracking the actions taken by their internal staff on social media. Employees within your firm should care about their actions. In the case of clients, if the comments made are justified, then they can help firm better its services.  In a case where they are biased and unjust you have every right to take legal steps.  It is also true in the case of business competitors too.

What this means: any legal firm should monitor what is being said in the social sphere. They should judge whether the comments made have logic or truth.

Brand investigations are the various stages which marketing professionals and managers of any business go through while deciding on brand reputation. Brand investigations help businesses project themselves in a favourable way for clients.

While good comments and feedback help a law firm in popularity, negative comments on the other hand will spread like wild fire and spoil all bids for building a significant brand reputation. Brand investigations are needed to monitor and take steps before you incur irreparable losses.

Peter Wilkinson

About Peter Wilkinson

★★Marketing and Social Media Strategy, KPI and ROI | Marketing and Social Media Consultant | Trainer | Speaker | Blogger ★★Runs The Social Media Business Club | Jobs, projects to bid on training - www.socialmediamarketing.eu.com ★★Runs Marketing Freelancer Portal | www.socialmediabusiness.uk.com ★★Social media strategy blogger | www.socialmediastrategy.org.uk/blog ★★ Backpacker and lover of the outdoors | watch this space!
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