There is a discourse about the ethical aspect of reputation management. A section of the consumer industry feels that only brands who have something to brush under the carpet use online reputation management services. The perception is that if you are conducting business according to best practices, you cannot have a tainted reputation in the market. It follows from the same argument that brands that have failed to live up to the expectations of their customers and clients resort to reputation management services to ensure that people dont get to know about their failure. This idea is not just flawed, but it doesnt take into consideration a very important aspect of modern day business: competition.
Brands in every consumer pocket are battling it out with competitors and rivals. They have to be vigilant about their brand and peoples perception about it. Online reputation management is not about burying negative feedback through search engine reputation management services. Its about pushing the right kind of content and information for your prospective and existing customers. You have a right to reach out to your business networks with authentic and correct information. Leaving them to fend for information from indigenous sources is not just unprofessional, but also wrong. You must speak about your brand instead of allowing others to do so for you. Reputation management services ensures that your brand get the proper voice and channel. You have to view reputation management in a positive light to find out how it helps your brand.
The Internet is a medium that offers everyone to voice their opinion. Anyone, including ex-employees, competitors or business rivals, can speak about your company. While running a business, you cannot keep everyone happy and you are also not liable to do so. This disgruntled and slyly plugged information does serious damage to your brand reputation. If you do not protect your own brand from this onslaught, you will be going ethically wrong with your own work. Online reputation management provides you with the necessary tools. When you are using the content you generate to promote your brand, you are only trying to expand your network and business, two aspects that you are very much entitled to do. There is no ethical dilemma here. You have to keep working towards a favorable reputation to stabilize your brand reputation, more than anything else.
In this context, you cannot rule out the possibility of your competitors stoking the bad press about you. Online reputation management is necessary to nip the problem in the bud. You have every right to respond to comments that are inaccurate and designed to fabricate negative notions about your brand. Reputation management services allow you to do that. Of course, online reputation management services include responding to feedback in a genuine, concerned way. If your consumers have a problem that they want you to address, they will be expecting you to respond to their complaints. You cannot ask the ethical question there and step away from the responsibility of being accountable to people who buy your products/services.