“It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it. If you think about that, you will do things differently.” WARREN BUFFET

With Internet, information and its consumption are shared between digital and social media giants. In this immense playground, Internet users create their own sphere of influence until they find themselves compartmentalized. Our browsing on the internet or on social networks conditions the content that will be offered to us. Very quickly, you find yourself in a forum where all the information is alike … It is your sphere of influence. By creating these silos, information spreads ever faster, until it goes viral. Virality on the web may seem like an obscure figure to us, but COVID 19 has given a life-size illustration of what virality means. It paralyzes the whole world in a few weeks… and for several months.

Reputation and online reputation are being built. Today, in the age of individualism, of social media, blogs and influencers, you are your own brand. Reputation is the image perceived by your audience: comments, texts, articles, images and more generally all the speeches your audience makes about you. It doesn’t matter what you say, what really matters is what Google, Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter say about you or your business. It is clear that the reputation is therefore built and also protected.

Reputation has a significant impact: it acts on the confidence of employees, future employees, customers, prospects and potential shareholders. In addition, a mix of company and individual prevails. The reputation of the company and of its leader are on the same pedestal. The correlation is no longer to be proven. It is essential to consider the subject in its most complete version, from the big picture, to adapt the adequate protection shield.

Finally, the question today is not whether a company will face reputation issues, but rather when it will face them. And, a reputation does not clean itself despite the promises of the right to be forgotten on Internet. The brands which manage to preserve their e-reputation following a crisis are those which are well prepared, those which have been able to anticipate.

A strategy to protect its e-reputation is therefore essential both upstream and in response. Everything is going fast. Too fast.

Whatever the situation, information is power.

See you next week for the next article. 😊