3 Options for Managing Reputation Management Services as a Marketing Agency

As a marketing agency, there are countless services you can offer your clients, from social media to search engine optimization (SEO) to digital advertising. However, reputation management is one of the most useful and often underrated services that can net higher margins than almost any other service in the agency ecosystem.

Nearly all of your local business clients with an online presence understand the importance of maintaining a positive reputation. When their reputation is good, they can build credibility, attract and win more customers, stay competitive, and even survive a tough economy. But they also know achieving a good reputation doesn’t happen by magic. Instead, it takes effort and the right tools — which is why reputation management services are so relevant and appealing to so many businesses today.

We’ll discuss what reputation management is and how you can package and sell it as a service using reputation management software for agencies. We’ll also give advice on which option(s) can help your agency generate the most revenue so you can confidently get started, if you haven’t already.

What is reputation management for agencies?

Before we dive into the service aspect, it’s important to define online reputation management.

Online reputation management is the practice of paying attention to, improving, and influencing public perceptions and discussions of a brand or business that are predominantly happening online. When you offer reputation management as a service to your clients, it means you’re taking some level of responsibility for their online business reputation and engaging in a variety of marketing strategies and tactics to shape how the public thinks and talks about their business.

One of the biggest elements of reputation management for agencies is review management — which involves actively monitoring, managing, and responding to reviews that your clients’ customers leave on social media, third-party review sites, Google, and elsewhere. It’s all about capturing a variety of customer feedback across multiple channels, listening to that feedback, and taking strategic actions based on that feedback. 

With your help, your clients can elevate and highlight positive customer experiences and learn from any negative customer experiences which aspects of their business need improvement. Your clients can also avoid a full-blown brand crisis by staying alert to perceptions and feedback that have taken a downturn and getting ahead of any major business problems.

Reputation management software for agencies makes the job easier and less time-consuming, helping your clients get maximum return on your reputation management services while enabling efficient processes, data collection, and analysis.

If you’re still not sure whether you should offer these services, consider that in a recent survey we conducted, 55% of marketing agencies said they already provide review and/or reputation management services to their clients. Without a similar offering, you could be missing out on an opportunity to add value to your client relationships and grow your agency’s revenue at the same time.

chart showing a list of what services marketing agencies offer to clients

Supported by the right reputation management software for agencies, there are a few different options for packaging and selling reputation management services to your clients. They include:

  • Do it for them: Full-service reputation management
  • Do it with them: You and your clients share management responsibilities
  • Let them do it: You resell the software and provide initial onboarding, then your clients handle all other management responsibilities on their own

We’ll discuss each of the three options below, including what your specific responsibilities are as well as your client’s, to help you gain an understanding about which offering might work best for your agency’s resources and client list.

1. Offering full-service reputation management services

This first option is the one that agencies often have the most success with. It does require a little more elbow grease and resources than the other options. However, you can save significant time and gain efficiency by choosing reputation management software for agencies that includes built-in, automated features, such as artificial intelligence (AI)-generated review responses. With comprehensive software, it’s possible to manage a business location in 30 minutes or less each month. 

Even better, you get to charge a premium for the value you bring to your clients, making this option a reliable and even potentially lucrative revenue generator.

Your responsibilities as the agency:

  • Set up the account, location info, and branding for your client
  • Ensure your client’s customers are added on a daily or weekly basis
  • Customize requests, landing pages, and email reminders
  • Set up and manage notifications, and alert your client to negative feedback within two business hours
  • Reply to reviews
  • Send reports to your client and include a summary of activity and insights
  • Give advice to your client to boost the effectiveness of reputation management for agencies, such as encouraging employees to ask customers to give feedback
  • Install display widgets on your client’s website
  • Create and share social media posts

Your client’s responsibilities:

  • None, other than to review the reports you give them and consult with you on strategy, if they choose. They pay to let you handle all day-to-day reputation management activities for them.

2. Sharing reputation management responsibilities

If you have fewer agency resources, tech-savvy clients, or clients that like to be involved, dividing and conquering reputation management responsibilities is a great approach to reputation management for agencies. You can do much of the setup and monthly report delivery along with some management tasks, while your clients can take on many of the daily or weekly activities.

Keep in mind that if you do take this route, the reputation management software for agencies you choose needs to provide the option to white-label it — i.e, apply your agency’s branding so the platform looks and feels like your own. White-labeling tools and services is an accepted practice for marketing agencies, and reputation management platforms are the most common service agencies white-label, followed by SEO tools.

Your responsibilities as the agency:

  • Set up the account, location info, and branding for your client
  • Set up and manage notifications
  • Reply to positive reviews
  • Send reports to your client and include a summary of activity and insights

Your client’s responsibilities:

  • Customize requests, landing pages, and email reminders
  • Ensure customers are added on a daily or weekly basis
  • Encourage employees to ask customers to give feedback
  • Reply to all direct feedback
  • Reply to negative reviews
  • Display reviews on the business website using widgets
  • Create and share social media posts

3. Reselling reputation management software for agencies

With the ability to white-label reputation management software for agencies, the third option is to simply turn around and resell the software to your clients. This approach has its advantages if you or your clients are highly price-sensitive. In this case, your role as the agency is limited to being a consultant while your client then becomes responsible for all reputation management activities using the platform. 

This approach doesn’t come as highly recommended as the others — usually because many clients will start out with sincere intentions, but then find they’re too busy to log in and use the platform as needed for it to be the most effective. When this happens, it can result in cancellations, which means limited long-term revenue for you. Any extra time you have to devote to keeping your clients will cut into your profit margins. And remember: the goal is to generate revenue with reputation management for agencies — not inhibit it.

Your responsibilities as the agency:

  • Set up the account, location info, branding, and notifications for your client
  • Educate your client on features and functions
  • Configure reports to send directly to your client
  • Consider a monthly review

Your client’s responsibilities:

  • Ensure customers are added on a daily or weekly basis
  • Customize requests, landing pages, and email reminders
  • Reply to all direct feedback
  • Reply to reviews
  • Encourage employees to direct customers to give feedback
  • Display reviews on the business website using widgets
  • Create and share social media posts

Make reputation management a revenue generator for your agency

Reputation management for agencies is undoubtedly important for your agency to grow and remain competitive today, since many of your clients may either be actively seeking help with it, or would be open to the idea if they haven’t yet considered it. 

By offering reputation management services, you can generate a steady stream of recurring revenue, since clients often require ongoing support to maintain their brand or business’s image. Additionally, offering reputation management alongside other marketing services creates a holistic approach to your strategies and tactics that can lead to more successful marketing campaigns.

By ensuring your clients’ business reputation is the best it can be, the marketing strategies you develop for them can build on a solid foundation of trust and credibility, resulting in higher conversion rates and a better return on investment. In particular, a full-service approach using reputation management software for agencies can help you:

  • Bolster your agency’s portfolio
  • Boost your profitability
  • Give your agency an edge over competing agencies
  • Bring greater value to your client relationships
  • Increase the overall effectiveness of your marketing services

At a time when creating substantial, long-term partnerships with your clients matters more than ever, offering reputation management services is key. 

Ready to get started? 

See how GatherUp’s comprehensive reputation management software for agencies with white-labeling capabilities can support your agency and clients. Start your free trial today.



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