What Your Employee’s Digital Footprint Says About Your Business Brand?

Welcome to the digital age, where businesses need to be more mindful of their online presence and the impact it has on their brand.

One crucial element to consider is the digital footprint of employees. Every staff member leaves a trail online, comprising their social media activity, shared content, and overall online presence. These individual footprints contribute to the company’s overall online reputation, which can either enhance or damage its brand image.

As an employer, you should recognise that your employees represent your brand, and their digital behaviour can impact it significantly. Therefore, managing and leveraging the digital footprint of your team members is a critical aspect of brand management.

In this article, we will explore the concept of an employee digital footprint and why it’s essential for businesses to pay attention to it to build and maintain a strong brand.

What Is A Business’s Digital Footprint And What Does It Mean For Your Brand?

A business’s digital footprint refers to all the information available online about the company, its products or services, and its employees. This includes everything from the website to social media channels and online reviews.

Managing a brand’s online reputation is crucial in today’s internet-driven world, and the digital footprint of a business and its employees plays a vital role in this. Prospective customers often research a company and its employees online before making a purchase or applying for a job. Therefore, negative information or unprofessional behaviour online can quickly harm a brand’s reputation and lead to negative consequences.

On the other hand, a positive digital footprint can help build and enhance a brand’s reputation, attract new customers and top talent, and create a loyal following. By leveraging the digital footprint of your employees, you can strengthen your brand’s online presence, boost engagement with your audience, and foster trust with potential customers.

In fact, 97% of leads who read customer reviews also read business responses to help them make a purchasing decision.

This is why managing a business’s digital footprint is a critical aspect of brand management success. By proactively managing your digital presence, you can create a strong and positive brand image that drives the success of your business.

How To Run An Online Brand Reputation Check For Your Business

As mentioned before, it’s crucial to manage your online branding and the first to achieve that would be to run an online reputation check.

The easiest and most effective way to do this is to use a third-party online reputation check service to ensure you cover everything and remove any bias in the generated report, or you can do it yourself. Here’s how you do it.

  1. Start with a Google search: Type your business name into Google and see what comes up. Look at the search results, images, and news articles to see if there are any negative reviews, mentions, or comments that require your attention.
  2. Check social media: Analyse your social media accounts to evaluate your engagement rate, the content you post, and how customers interact with your brand. Look for any negative comments, reviews, or mentions, and respond to them professionally and promptly.
  3. Assess online reviews: Check out review sites like Yelp, Google Reviews, industry-specific review platforms, or Glassdoor. Analyse the reviews to see if there are any common themes or issues that need addressing. Respond to negative reviews by apologising and offering a resolution and thank positive reviewers for their feedback.
  4. Evaluate your website: Your website is a crucial element of your digital presence. Ensure that it is user-friendly, mobile-optimised, and contains updated information about your products or services. Check for broken links, outdated content, or poor design elements that can negatively impact your brand image.
  5. Use online reputation management tools: Several online tools can help you monitor your digital footprint, including Google Alerts, Social Mention, and Hootsuite Insights. These tools can alert you to any negative mentions, help you track your social media performance, and provide insights into your online reputation.

By conducting an online brand check, you can identify any areas that need improvement and proactively manage your digital footprint. This can help you maintain a positive brand image and ensure that potential customers see your business in the best possible light.

How Does Your Employee’s Digital Footprint Affect Your Business Branding?

It goes without saying that your employees are a reflection of your business, the same applies to your business brand. The digital footprint of your employees can significantly impact your business branding, one crucial part being your sales, in fact, a single negative article can lead to a loss of up to 22% of customers.

Here are some ways in which your employee’s digital footprint can affect your brand.

Growth/Reputation: Your employee’s online behaviour can impact your company’s reputation. If an employee posts inappropriate content or makes negative comments online, it can reflect poorly on your brand and harm its reputation.

Trust: Customers trust companies that prioritise professionalism and ethics. If an employee’s digital footprint showcases unethical behaviour or inappropriate content, it can damage the trust between your business and your customers.

Recruitment: A positive digital footprint of your employees can help you attract top talent to your company. Potential employees often research a company’s online reputation, and if your employees have a positive digital footprint, it can help you recruit talented individuals to your team.

Brand advocacy: Your employees can be powerful brand advocates, and their digital footprint can help build and enhance your brand’s reputation. Encourage your employees to share positive content about your company on their social media channels and reward them for their efforts.

Compliance: Certain industries have strict compliance regulations, and employees’ online behaviour can be subject to compliance audits. Ensure that your employees are aware of any compliance regulations that apply to your business and educate them on how their digital footprint can impact the company’s compliance efforts.

By managing and leveraging their online presence, you can enhance your brand’s reputation, attract top talent, and create a positive online presence. Encourage your employees to be mindful of their online behaviour and lead by example, promoting a culture of professionalism and ethical behaviour.

Successful Branding: Why Content And Reviews Are Your Most Important Lifeline

Successful branding requires a strong digital presence that incorporates content and reviews from both your business and your employees. A company that delivers great online content, and has great reviews from both clients and employees, will always grow faster and further than a company that doesn’t.

According to Glassdoor, 75% of active job seekers apply to jobs if the employer actively manages their employer brand and digital presence.

Content: Quality content is a powerful tool for building brand awareness and engaging customers. Consistently creating and sharing relevant, informative, and engaging content on your website, blog, and social media channels can help establish your business as a thought leader in your industry. Moreover, high-quality content can improve your search engine ranking, drive traffic to your website, and increase customer engagement.

Reviews: Reviews are an integral part of your digital presence and have a significant impact on your business branding. Positive reviews can build trust, establish credibility, and influence purchase decisions. Moreover, online reviews can help you identify areas for improvement and provide valuable feedback to enhance your products or services. Responding to reviews, both positive and negative, can also demonstrate your commitment to customer satisfaction.

Social media: Social media platforms are powerful tools for brand building and customer engagement. By leveraging social media channels like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram, you can increase brand awareness, drive traffic to your website, and engage with customers. Social media can also be used to promote your content, share customer reviews, and showcase your brand’s personality and values.

Employee activity: Encouraging your employees to become active on professional platforms such LinkedIn can greatly impact your business branding. A business that has employees who positively engage with their content and is active online, posting the right things for their line of work, will positively add to a business’s own branding.

Consistently creating high-quality content, actively engaging with customer reviews, and leveraging social media can help you establish a strong digital presence, build trust and credibility, and increase customer engagement. By prioritising these key elements of your digital presence, you can enhance your business branding and grow your business.

Extra Things To Do To Build A Positive Digital Footprint And Branding

Of course, good branding can’t be built overnight but bad branding can, this is why it’s crucial to be on top of your business branding and online reputation.

In addition to creating quality content and managing customer reviews, here are some extra things you can do to build a positive online footprint and enhance your business branding:

  1. Monitor your online presence: Regularly monitoring your online presence can help you stay on top of any negative comments or reviews and address them promptly. Tools like Google Alerts or social media monitoring platforms can help you track mentions of your brand online.
  2. Engage with your audience: Engaging with your audience on social media or other digital platforms can help you build a stronger connection with your customers. Responding to comments, sharing user-generated content, and running social media campaigns can all help increase engagement and build a positive brand image.
  3. Encourage your employees to engage with your business: Employee engagement with brand content is someone everyone looks for; a dead business page or negative employee review will do more harm than you might think whereas a positive one can go a long way in aiding your business success.
  4. Collaborate with other brands: Collaborating with other businesses or influencers in your industry can help you expand your reach and increase your brand’s visibility. Partnering with other businesses on joint promotions or sharing content on each other’s platforms can help you build a stronger brand image and reach new audiences.
  5. Prioritise customer service: Providing excellent customer service is essential for building a positive online footprint and enhancing your business branding. Make sure your customer service team is well-trained, responsive, and attentive to customer needs. Responding to customer inquiries and complaints promptly and professionally can help build trust and establish a positive brand reputation.

In conclusion, your employees play a major role in building a positive online footprint and enhancing your business branding. It requires a multi-faceted approach that includes quality content, customer reviews, and proactive engagement with your audience. By monitoring your online presence, encouraging employee involvement, collaborating with other businesses, prioritising customer service, and actively engaging with your audience, you can establish a strong digital presence and enhance your business branding.