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reputation management online

Reputation Management: How To Avoid Scandal Because Of Breach Of Contract

By Business Contracts, Business Lawyer

Reputation Management: How To Avoid Scandal When There’s A Breach Of ContractA professionally prepared agreement is essential to reputation management. Because it can help you avoid a PR disaster when there’s a breach of contract.

How bad can it get?

As an example, look at the lawsuit by the National Rifle Association (NRA)* against its ad agency for breach of contract. Among other things, the NRA is seeking $40 million in compensatory damages plus punitive damages. The lawsuit and related news stories will do nothing to help either party protect its reputation.

So, how do you prevent bad publicity? Here are 4 important reputation management tactics…

1. Pre-Agreement Due Diligence

Before signing a business contract, research the other party. Check to see if there is a history of lawsuits or the other party using social media to hurt another company’s reputation online. Walk away from the potential deal if there is such a history.

2. Confidentiality

The written agreement should contain confidentiality/non-disclosure provisions to protect important data.

3. Non-Disparagement

Your contract should provide that neither party will disparage the other during and after performance of the agreement. In some instances, it may make sense to include a large liquidated damages amount to be paid by a party if they do decide to denigrate the other party in violation of the agreement.

4. Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR)

Rather than publicly airing the dispute with nasty claims and counterclaims in a lawsuit, it often makes sense for a contract to provide for confidential alternative dispute resolution. This can include mediation and binding arbitration using JAMS or AAA rules and procedures.

Other Reputation Management Contract Terms

Of course, there are other provisions that an experienced business contracts lawyer will include in your agreement for reputation management. Just make sure you put the right contract in place that protects your good name in case the relationship between the parties deteriorates. Because you can’t afford to leave business reputation management to chance.

* Disclosure – Business Lawyer Mike Young is a member of the National Rifle Association (NRA) and strong supporter of Second Amendment rights. However, he does not represent the NRA as legal counsel in this lawsuit or other matters.

Why Have a Social Media Policy?

By Internet Lawyer, Website Lawyer, Website Legal Documents

social media policiesMany small business owners mistakenly believe that a social media policy is only for large companies with many employees. In fact, social media policies are very important for businesses of all sizes.

What is a social media policy?

A social media policy is your business’ way of telling employees and independent contractors in advance what you consider to be acceptable and unacceptable use of social networking sites like Facebook, Google+, Linkedin, Twitter, and others.

This legal document is important because it helps you protect your online reputation. You don’t want those working for you to identify their affiliation with your business at the same time they’re posting content on social networks that could hurt your business.

Let’s face it. It’s expensive and time-consuming to recover your reputation on the Internet after someone associated with your business has done something offensive that gets tied to your company simply because they do work for you. You will pay a bundle to reputation management businesss to clean up an online mess after the fact.

Can a social media policy bulletproof your business from improper use of Facebook and other social networking websites? No. However, your policy can significantly reduce your risk that an employee or freelancer doing work for your company will harm your reputation.

What should you put in your social media policy? That’s something for you to discuss with your Internet attorney.

Reputation Management Online: Restaurant Owner Response to Customer Reviews Backfires

By Internet Lawyer

There are many effective ways to manage your company’s reputation on the Internet. However, your reputation management activities should not include the mistakes made by a Canadian restaurant owner who because upset about negative client reviews posted online.

To retaliate, the restaurant owner set up a fake profile for her client on a sex-oriented website and sent out inappropriate related emails.

Now, the owner has been found guilty of criminal libel. This means she’s got massive legal problems in addition a reputation issue that’s far worse than if she had simply used legitimate reputation management SEO strategies and tactics.

If you’re upset about client reviews for your business on the Internet, consult with your Internet lawyer to map out a game plan to minimize the damage caused without incurring legal liability or further damaging your online reputation. Your Internet attorney can work with you and a legitimate SEO company to help repair your reputation.