“The online reputation scam is one of the greatest threats a business owner can face today and many are not aware it exists,” said The March group Chairman George E. Gifford. “We developed The March Group Scam Prevention Program to alert entrepreneurs, s
Coral Springs, FL (PRWEB) May 20, 2010
While the majority of adults use the internet to access valuable information and locate services, a surprising number of business owners have done little to protect their reputation online.
The March Group Scam Prevention Program was developed to educate firms about the risks posed by online reputation scams. The March Group Scam Prevention Program today issued five basic steps to minimize online scam potential.
“The online reputation scam is one of the greatest threats a business owner can face today and many are not aware it exists,” said The March group Chairman George E. Gifford. “We developed The March Group Scam Prevention Program to alert entrepreneurs, so they can respond before it is too late.”
Online reputation scams occur when a business’ reputation is targeted by another party and attacked online. Typically perpetrated, not by clients, but unscrupulous competitors, disgruntled former employees or even personal acquaintances of the business owner, an online smear campaign can quickly and significantly devastate the firm’s bottom line.
The actual scam occurs when a website that ranks well with Google refuses to remove libelous postings and offers to “investigate” the accused firm for a large fee.
Online or offline, legal success against libelous material is expensive and evasive and requires vast public disclosure of proprietary information. Celebrities rarely sue tabloids for this reason. Thus, many companies are held hostage by negative posts and pay exorbitant fees to have false information removed.
Entrepreneurs should protect themselves with five basic steps toward brand control:
1. Have a website that clearly explains your business and services
2. Ensure your firm’s name is in the website address/domain name
3. Know your competition – 74% of US adults, 18 and older, use the internet routinely. Today’s competition is anyone who outranks you on brand name search. Also, competitors routinely purchase Google Ads with their competitor’s brand name to divert customers to their site. Check your free listings under your brand name, this could spell trouble and lead to a scam
4. Know your negative press – is there negative information about you online? This is fertile ground for a scam. Search your brand name, but also search user complaint sites. Establish Google Alerts to monitor what is being said about your brand name.
5. Develop a plan – seek guidance from experts. If you don’t control your brand, someone else will!
For more information on how The March Group Scam Prevention Program helps business owners or to learn more about our services, contact us at http://www.marchgroup.com and http://www.marchgroupscam.com
For nearly a quarter-century, The March Group has advised business owners of value-enhancement techniques designed to maximize value and meet exit strategy objectives. Contact: Kelli Matonak, Corporate Marketing Director, kmatonak(at)marchgroup(dot)com