In this edited excerpt, he shows how you don’t have to keep track of everything.
Andrew Warner: Can we protect our reputation everywhere? What about message boards, the dark, hidden corners of the internet?
Andy Beal: You really only have to worry about finding the influential message boards.
Back in the days when I was part of the executive team for Web Sourced, we were one of the world’s largest search marketing firms. We had 2,000 clients. Inevitably there were going to be one or two who weren’t going to be happy.
We knew we didn’t have to scour every message board to hear what they had to say about us. We knew there were 2 or 3 boards where most people would congregate, and we basically made sure we had a presence there. We made sure we connected with the moderators. If there was a complaint, we’d see it, or someone in the message board would see it and alert us.
You need to Focus in on monitoring just the ones that are influential. Because message boards are complex and deep in the web, chances are the others aren’t not going to bubble up outside of that web community.
The moment something does, it’s almost like when a virus jumps from an animal to a human. We don’t care as much all the while it’s confined to a bird or pig. It’s when it first occurs in a human that we act.
All the while that negative sentiment is bubbling in a small forum, we don’t care. The moment someone takes that and puts it on a blog or mentions it on Twitter or puts it on their MySpace page, that’s when it’s got a potential to hurt us. That’s when we take action.
[Thanks Jonathan Nelson of TwitterMass for caring enough of about Mixergy to introduce me to Andy Beal!]