Wikipedia is an important piece to completing your brand image.
Your business probably already has a social media strategy — thoroughly considering all the ways to possibly connect with your intended audience. But does that strategy include Wikipedia?
Should you have a Wikipedia page?
Every business that takes marketing seriously today wants a Wikipedia page. If your company doesn’t have a page yet, you’re not only behind the times–you’re behind the competition. Or, maybe there is already a page about your company, but you aren’t paying any attention to it. In that case, it could be doing you more harm than good.
When potential users of your services search online, they want to read impartial content about your company. They are likely to first go to Wikipedia for that.
Wikipedia plays a major role in quickly informing people about newsworthiness, historical context, cultural relevance, and more.
When people search out web presence of you or your company, any related Wikipedia article will likely appear on the first page of their search. If you don’t have an article, it’s a serious gap in your brand strategy and people may wonder if your company is reputable. Or even exists!
Focus on the qualities of your brand
If there is a Wikipedia article on your company, but you have not paid any attention to it, you should look at it now. It likely is not promoting your brand, and could even be undermining it.
Take a careful look at the existing article and look for the following:
- Banners. Is there an unsightly banner at the top saying that there is something wrong with the article? Sometimes sources are lacking, or it reads like an advertisement. The banner will suggest improvements be made to the article. Having a banner could eventually lead to deletion of that page by Wikipedia editors. However, in most cases, having an article that needs work is still better than not having an article.
- Outdated info. Does the article accurately reflect the current status of the company? Is the information in it correct and up-to-date? Has misinformation been added to the article?
- Vandalization. Has your article been vandalized? Has someone added information that clearly does not belong there? This is different from misinformation, and is often done by bored middle schools students.
- Reputable references. The next thing you want to look at is, is the information in the article strongly supported by credible media sources? Under the References section (at the bottom of the article), if there are less than 10 references, then the article is not well supported by media coverage. Articles lacking significant media coverage can be nominated for deletion.
- Voice. Do a review of the overall tone of the article and see if it sounds like an advertisement. You do not want it to sound like one. A neutral tone is ideal, as it displays impartiality. Just the facts, without reading like it is trying to explicitly sell you something.
The ideal Wikipedia page gives readers very basic information about your company in very plain language. It does not sound like your website, and it does not sound like an advertisement for your company.
A simple, straightforward Wikipedia page encourages people to then visit your website, where you have full control over the content.
After you’ve done this review, and find that the article seems to be well written and well sourced, it is probably supporting your brand. If your article falls short on one or more of the elements in the review, then it needs work.