Ethical Considerations in Reputation Management
In anything you do in life, there are always ethical considerations to think about and to take into account before you make any decisions. These ethical decisions will play a big role in how successful you may be in your life. This is especially true when it comes to reputation management and how you decide to manage your online reputation. While many methods of improving your reputation are very tempting, they may be considered unethical and should be considered carefully before deciding on proceeding with these methods.
With the access to so many tools and resources on the internet, individuals and businesses can choose a large number of ways to try and make their online reputation better than it currently is which may be beneficial in several ways. There are both ethically acceptable and ethically unacceptable methods to achieve a positive improvement in your reputation. It is up to you to choose the proper way to improve your online reputation in the best way possible.
Some of the popular methods of boosting your reputation that are considered ethically wrong by many people include such things as paying people to post reviews or to give five stars to your company or product. Other people are trying to have their criminal history hidden from search results so that they will look like they are better people than their criminal history may otherwise indicate. These are often those who are in the process of trying to get a job and want as much of their history hidden as possible.
There are some methods that can help improve the standings of your business or yourself without being unethical that are just as effective. One popular method that is used is offering a product to someone to try out at either a reduced cost or for free. These people are then obligated to post a review of the product and their opinions of the product. This is in fact one of the most popular methods that is used to help enhance the appearance of a product on many websites and can be used to help boost sales while not crossing the line into being unethical. What keeps this from being unethical is the simple fact that many people will add a note into their review that they received the product in return for a review. This allows for transparency which is very important when it comes to doing business on the internet.
Beyond the moral and ethical connotations of your activity when it comes to improving your online reputation, there are several other consequences if you do something that is considered unethical. For a business, you can see a loss of sales and customers if it were to get out that you were creating fake reviews or paying people to falsely push your business in a positive light. This is especially true if what is being written is either not true or has not been proven. In certain circumstances, you may even face legal action for your activities.
Another serious consequence of unethical behavior is lawsuits. There have been cases where people and businesses have been sued because they have either been paid or were doing the paying for fake reviews. This is something that is very serious to many shopping websites and is often not tolerated in any capacity.
Whatever your goals are for monitoring your online reputation, it is very important to consider the consequences of each choice you make. There are both ethical and unethical methods to improving your social reputation and you should take care in deciding how to proceed.