Gen Z and millennials are the most digitally connected generations in history and are known for being more socially conscious than previous generations. Deloitte’s Global 2022 Gen Z and millennial survey found that 90% of their Gen Z and millennial respondents are making at least some effort to reduce their own impact on the environment, adding that they want businesses, and their own employers, to do more.
These generations are also known to be savvy consumers, who are willing to take their money elsewhere if they don’t like a company’s reputation. Not only do they use social media to research your company before making a purchase, but they also check out your company’s reputation online before applying for a job or accepting a job offer.
If they don’t like what they see, they’ll probably just move on to the next option. That means reputational management is more than just a good idea—it’s an essential part of your brand strategy.
What is reputation management?
Reputation management is the process of managing, protecting and improving your reputation. It involves monitoring what people are saying about your brand, managing negative content, and responding to any bad press or false claims.
When we talk about reputation management, we’re not just talking about changing someone else’s perception of you—we’re also talking about controlling the way you come across publicly. That means keeping an eye on what kind of content goes out there about you and making sure that anything that does exist fits into your overall narrative as a company.
What do millennials and Gen Z care about, exactly?
Millennials and Gen Z are the most socially conscious generations in history, and they have a strong sense of which companies are sustainable and are actually doing things for the greater good. They’re not just looking at what companies say they’re doing—they want to see results. If you want to attract these young job-seekers and customers, you have to have a strong online presence.
Here are 4 things you should do:
1. Show that you care about your community, employees, and the environment
It’s no longer enough for your company to have high-profit margins. Millennials and Gen Z look at companies that serve a certain social purpose and are mission-driven. This is why corporate social responsibility (CSR) is so important. CSR is how companies show they care about their community and their employees—and it can have a big impact on your business. These days, the way you treat your employees, customers, and community impacts your bottom line.
You can have great CSR policies in place and still not be able to attract top talent from millennials or Gen Z because those policies aren’t well-known or communicated clearly enough. You should be able to communicate your CSR efforts through storytelling on your websites and in other marketing materials such as social media posts. That way, when millennials or Gen Z seek out information about your company (whether it’s for purchasing or employment purposes) they can be positively influenced.
2. Remain transparent
Millennials and Gen Z are digital natives which means that they know how to find information. If your company is not being truthful about its practices, you can bet that these generations will find out and you’ll soon be facing a communication crisis. This type of negative coverage can greatly impact your reputation, which, in return, can drive away current and potential millennial and Gen Z employees and customers.
3. Provide a healthy working environment
Flexibility is the key to attracting and retaining millennial and Gen Z employees. While older generations may have been more attached to a specific workplace, millennials and Gen Z are more likely to be open to a variety of working conditions. The most flexible options include remote work and frequent job promotions, which can help keep employees motivated and engaged in their work. In addition, a good life-work balance is important for these generations.
They prefer jobs that don’t require them to sacrifice time with friends or family for career advancement. How you treat your employees and the benefits you offer can easily become public as many people share this information on their social media. If they are unhappy, this can spill over to your customers who might decide that they don’t want to purchase products or services from a company that does not value its employees.
4. Engage with them
Long gone are the times when putting out a great ad was enough. Millennials and Gen Z are bombarded with ads every single hour of their day so they are desensitized to most media messages. These generations expect brands to be easily approachable and open to conversation. Your online reputation is highly dependent on your ability to engage online users. Getting their feedback and making them feel that their input matters will bring you closer to these generations than any expensive ad.
Remember: each social media platform works differently. What performs well on Instagram, for example, might flop on TikTok. That’s why you should know how to use each social media platform effectively.
How can you manage your reputation?
Before you can manage your reputation online, you have to monitor and measure it. If you want to get ahead of the competition and attract top talent, then media intelligence for reputation management is essential. Using media intelligence software can help you track information about your company across all social channels as well as monitor mentions in the news and by competitors. This will help ensure that any negative comments don’t get lost within the noise of social media posts and news stories about other things happening around the world.
Having this information on time will make it easier for you to create and implement a corporate reputation management plan so that if negative mentions surface about your company online or through traditional media outlets, you can respond quickly and appropriately before anything gets out of hand.
That’s where A Data Pro comes in!
We analyze data for our clients and help them understand how online and traditional media coverage affects their reputation, so they can make informed decisions about their future. Our multilingual teams can help you monitor and measure your reputation in over 40+ languages so you can focus on creating strategies that will help you achieve your goals. For more information, drop us a line!