The new internet era has provided the world with fresh and fertile soil for new companies offering Web services to sprout everywhere. Everyday new companies are emerging with solutions for problems we had never heard of before, and are proving to be quite necessary, making people wonder how they had managed without them. One of the most recent ones are the online reputation management companies, which help companies, or individuals, to erase negative or damaging content from the internet.

Nowadays, with the large amount of people with internet access,  information, in the shape of images, blog posts, commentaries, photos or status updates, travels like a virus, as  they are replicated by the algorithms in search engines. The problem is, everything posted on the web stays there forever and everybody with an internet connection will have access to this permanent record of everything we share in it. It is here where reputation management companies come in handy, helping celebrities, businessmen, lawyers or even college students to clean those unwanted memories or ill-meant gossips from the record.

Reputation management companies work with all sorts of clients, from big multi-national companies, to celebrities and important businessmen, to students applying to college or for a job. These companies claim that in a close future, everybody will have to manage their online image, as there are new ways of harming people on the web being found or created every day, and most of the time, it is people themselves, or even their close friends, who cause the harm without knowing it. People post things without realizing how it may affect others, or even themselves, in the future. And the same works for companies.

Competition between brands has been around since the earlier stages of commerce. What has changed, is the way brands and companies attack each other. Nowadays, internet has become not only a way of promoting your brand, but also a tool to defame your opponents. When looking for a specific brand, or company, the reviews for it will show in the results page of your search engine. If someone, like an unsatisfied costumer, a former employee or even a competitor, has written unfavourable reviews, they will show at the same time as your company’s site. The normal response to this would be to answer to these reviews, explaining or apologizing for the faults in your service, or, to create fake profiles and post a large amount of positive comments. However, this will only backfire on you, as this will only invite others to answer or add to your comments, creating a discussion, which will draw in more people who may also look at the negative reviews. And on the SEO side, your site will rank higher, which will make more people visit it, and look at everything, including the unfavourable comments.

This is why online reputation management companies are important to keep a clean and positive image on the web. With all their SEO expertise, they will control the search results for specific chosen terms, so that negative results don’t appear on the first pages.