We don’t hear too much about Web 2.0 anymore, so are we in a post-Web 2.0 era then? Well, it never really went away, only infused its principles and characteristics into the everyday functioning of the internet. Privileging participation and information-sharing, Web 2.0 proclaimed that users are the drivers, creating the content and directing the online landscape.

Social media rode the Web 2.0 wave and is now so intermeshed with online activity; the internet experience clearly would not be the same without it. Social media itself has changed substantially from the creation of Myspace, to Facebook, and LinkedIn, to the dawning of tweeting, +1, and share/like. Also, review sites and personal blogs have been game-changers. This user-driven transition shot an already important issue within reputation management, online reputation management, even more to the forefront.

The elements that defined Web 2.0 now drive the creation of reputation-relevant content, and monitoring the ways in which a company is discussed online is a multi-faceted process. An SEO company can specialize in this type of monitoring and the ways to mitigate the effects of bad mentions or reviews. In this arena even a single negative post or review, given enough traction or social exposure, can cause harm. That is why sustained monitoring and purposeful action to resolve negative reviews is essential.

International Implications
Not surprisingly, this is not only relevant in the US, as social media use and customer feedback is prevalent across the globe. Consider that one quarter of search queries for the world’s 20 biggest brands are links to user-created content. There is a great deal of user content that could potentially harm companies both in the short and long term. This content originates from different countries around the world as well.

The intercultural nature of many businesses’ target audiences demand they themselves track what their customers are saying across cultures or contract SEO experts to do so. Additionally, those managing the reputation must utilize international SEO to engage the customers in an appropriate manner and resolve reputation issues.