The first thing to do in any online reputation management campaign is to analyze the current search results. Most people conducting a search won’t go past page one and the numbers that do drop off further and further for each page. The top thirty results are usually a good indicator of the farthest anyone is going to go, so looking only that far makes a lot of sense. After that a strategy can be formed as to how to improve the results, which websites should be promoted and which ones need to be pushed down in the results. It is never an exact science and something that works for one brand might not the right strategy for another.
Once a strategy is in place and results are beginning to improve, many companies then feel that they can drop their reputation management campaign. The truth is that just like traditional PR, online reputation management never ends. There is always going to be another angry customer no matter how well you treat them, and there will always be people who will want to attack you. The problem is that in the digital space, unlike when all of this was simply text and talk, it never goes away. Years down the road people will still see the things people have said. The only way to keep your pages strong enough to stay in the top ten is to keep the management up and keep getting attention to those pages.