The ‘Reputation Report 2021’, published by Igniyte, presents the results of a survey of 500 UK business owners and managers into reputation-damaging incidents and how businesses attempt to manage such crises. The report highlights the damaging impact that fake customer reviews and negative social media posts have had on UK businesses: 48 percent of UK businesses felt an impact on their company’s reputation and sales in the last year due to negative content about their brand online.
Other key findings include:
- 39 percent of businesses say that they have been directly affected by fake reviews on platforms such as Google, Trustpilot, Trip Advisor, Reevoo and Reviews.co.uk in the last year.
- 68 percent of businesses are now worried about fake reviews and 84 percent of managers say online reviews are critical to the financial and reputational state of their business.
- Fake or negative online reviews are now seen as the biggest threat to the reputation of UK businesses. However, the data shows that 47 percent of businesses do not actively deal with or respond to their online reviews.
- 71 percent of businesses say critical posts and malicious comments on social media are the most damaging form of online content to their business – across platforms such as Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Tiktok, Pinterest, YouTube, and Reddit.
The research asked what businesses felt were the biggest threats to their company’s reputation and aims to help guide businesses on how to improve their negative reputation. As such, the biggest threats to a business’s reputation in 2021 are:
- Negative reviews
- Online crises (including social media crises)
- Offline crises (e.g., operational or product failure)
- Other businesses undercutting
- Incidents with employees or board members
- Lack of company social media activity.