Brand Safety is a strategy developed to protect a brand’s reputation and image from unfavorable situations, especially on social networks and the internet. A negative comment or association can create a big problem even for your sales.
What Is Brand Safety?
Some strategies are gaining more and more space in organizations, regardless of their segment. And among them is Brand Safety.
It is a series of tactics that the company adopts to protect its image, especially on the internet. Through monitoring and care when establishing partnerships, it is possible to identify situations that may harm the company’s reputation — avoiding them or reducing the damage when they occur.
The image of a brand is something precious: a positive reputation helps to gain public trust and engagement, in addition to more sales; In contrast, a negative reputation ends up alienating buyers and even business partners, harming the company’s performance and reducing its relevance in the market.
Therefore, it is essential to know how the public sees your organization, solve trouble spots before they turn into fires, avoid negative associations and protect the company’s credibility.
The Importance Of Brand Safety For Organizations
The truth is this: people are always watching what is said about companies on social networks, whether to find good recommendations, find out what they consider inappropriate about them, or check out other buyers’ experiences.
Just a single comment can have serious consequences for an organization’s image and even profits. This message can pass from user to user — through likes, shares, and interactions — and reach many people. Like a snowball, more and more customers or potential buyers end up having a negative view of the company, reaching the point of abandoning it (and going to the competition).
A harmful situation can still spill over its credibility even if the brand is not directly involved in something unfavorable. Currently, there are several movements in which citizens demand companies that they sponsor or in some way have relationships with other organizations/people involved in scandals or in contexts considered negative — such as the propagation of hate messages, for example.
There are several recent examples of companies that withdrew their sponsorship due to campaigns like these, taking this decision as a way of showing that they do not agree with the comments and ideas expressed by a certain individual. This is a way of “stanching the blood” to prevent the brand’s image from further damaging.
However, with the speed at which everything happens on social networks, it is impossible to react when something negative appears: it is necessary to avoid — and even anticipate — problems before they happen. This is especially important because, no matter if the organization does the best image management, there are always individuals who will be left with the first (and negative) impression of the brand after a complicated situation. Therefore, prevention is always the best medicine.
Tips For Taking Care Of The Company’s Image
Some guidelines are essential to preserve the organization’s image and avoid problems.
Invest In Monitoring
Imagine that someone comments on social media about a problem they had with your company, and that message reaches thousands of people… but your company only finds out about it days later — when the negative comments pile up and spread everywhere.
Social networks ask for quick responses: therefore, it is important to be attentive and cautious in case of problems, investing in monitoring mechanisms to release any flame before it spreads like wildfire.
Deeply Research Those Involved With The Brand
It’s not for nothing to say, “tell me who you hang out with, and I’ll tell you who you are”: it’s natural for people to think positive or negative things about someone depending on their company — and it’s no different with companies. For example, if she sponsors someone with a history of domestic violence, it’s not hard to imagine what the general public’s opinion would be of that partnership.
It is important to conduct in-depth research on the people, events, organizations sponsored, and other business partners before entering the union. It would help if you looked for their placements (or lack thereof), comments, opinions, and any situation that may positively or negatively impact the image of those who associate with them.
Beware Of Marketing Strategies
Just as it is important to choose the people involved with the company well – such as influencers and poster boys/girls – it is also essential to consider how other marketing actions need similar care.
Imagine a branded ad appearing on a website in a segment that is not a good idea for the organization to associate with or be a platform linked to criminal activities: what would the company’s reputation look like in this case?
Stay Consistent With Your Values
A business needs to define its organizational culture, thinking about which values will guide its positioning and actions. However, it does not help that these ideals remain only on paper, advertisements, and marketing strategies. Otherwise, they will be of no use, and worse, they can be seen as “proof” of the company’s inconsistency.
Therefore, it is fundamental that the company follows its organizational values, both internally and in its partnerships. For example, a vegan business appearing on the list of sponsors for a Rib Party is a reputational crisis begging to be blown up.
The company’s image also does not sustain itself just by avoiding problems. It would help if you built a solid reputation — and in line with your values — to be credible with the public and awaken their engagement. After all, more and more people want organizations that positively impact society.
Therefore, companies are investing in actions that benefit marginalized groups or the general population, associating their image with the community’s well-being.