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For many people, reputation management consultants and reputation managers are the same, that they do the same tasks and only differ in designation. Technically, however, consultants are different from managers. They serve different roles and the breadth of their respective responsibilities are not similar.
Active vs Passive
A consultant, in broad terms, is an expert who offers advice. Hence, someone who is a reputation management consultant is an expert who provides guidance, insights, and advice on matters concerning reputation management. The key phrase here is “giving advice.” This means that a consultant only has a passive role.
This is in contrast to what an actual reputation manager does. As a manager, there is an active responsibility to get things done. A manager translates the guidance, insights, and advice into plans of action or immediate implementation. The plans of action are then carried out with the help of other personnel or by the reputation manager himself (in the case of small companies or organizations). A manager assumes a direct role in reputation management while a consultant is only indirectly responsible.
Management vs Oversight
The actual reputation manager of a company or organization may have the following list of functions:
- Setting up of an authoritative online presence
- Ensuring that all information about the company or organization are positive
- Getting rid of unfavorable online content or addressing negative reviews and comments
- Promoting good feedback or positive information about the company or organization
- Establishing good communication with customers, stakeholders, and the public in general to make the company or organization more appealing and approachable
- Directing or supervising people who may be hired to do some of the functions mentioned above
On the other hand, a reputation management consultant only offers useful information or guidance on how to achieve and maintain a better reputation. Consultants are typically not employees of a company or organization. They are usually independent experts who work with companies on an impermanent and contractual basis.
There will be instances when consultants are hired to directly work with the employees of a company. In these situations, they will be given direct involvement in the reputation management process. However, they are usually (de facto) relegated to planning and oversight functions since the actual management powers are maintained by the company, by the managers who hire the consultant.
Is a Consultant Necessary?
Consultants are needed when a company has no real expert in reputation management. A designated “reputation manager” in a company may not be an expert in the field at all. As such, there is a need to obtain reliable guidance from someone who has the experience and expertise to get the job done.
Additionally, active reputation management functions may not be necessary year-round. It will be more cost-effective to hire a consultant to lead a team when there is a need for serious reputation repair. The standard public relations department of a company usually suffices in handling regular reputation maintenance work (when there are no major image-threatening concerns involved).
In actual practice, the distinction between a reputation manager and a reputation management consultant does not really mean anything. What needs to be emphasized is the need for reliable reputation management experience and expertise. If a company’s reputation manager does not have enough expertise or if a company does not have someone to do reputation management functions, a consultant may be hired to help.
e-Reputation Management is Sticky Web Media, Inc company located in the U.S.A.-and is a reputation management company servicing small, medium, and large businesses nationally. e- Reputation Management serves all areas nationwide including Alabama (AL), Alaska (AK), Arizona (AZ), Arkansas (AR), California (CA), Colorado (CO), Connecticut (CT), Delaware (DE), District of Columbia (Washington DC), Florida (FL), Georgia (GA), Hawaii (HI), Idaho (ID), Illinois (IL), Indiana (IN), Iowa (IA), Kansas (KS), Kentucky (KY), Louisiana (LA), Maine (ME), Maryland (MD), Massachusetts (MA), Michigan (MI), Minnesota (MN), Mississippi (MS), Missouri (MO), Montana (MT), Nebraska (NE), Nevada (NV), New Hampshire (NH), New Jersey (NJ), New Mexico (NM), New York (NY), North Carolina (NC), North Dakota (ND), Ohio (OH), Oklahoma (OK), Oregon (OR), Pennsylvania (PA), Rhode Island (RI), South Carolina (SC), South Dakota (SD), Tennessee (TN), Texas (TX), Utah (UT), Vermont (VT), Virginia (VA), Washington (WA), West Virginia (WV), Wisconsin (WI), and Wyoming (WY).