Social media tools such as Twitter, Facebook or YouTube are a great way of keeping up to date with news, whether business or personal. But they also have the ability to damage your reputation or your company's within hours

Often negative comments are made by non-traditional sources such as bloggers who are much less willing to take down untrue or defamatory material. They may also be outside England, making them difficult and expensive to pursue. But it is possible to turn a negative online "legacy" around.

A client company with a supply contract worth millions of pounds recently faced a barrage of negative press following an investigation into the award of their contract. The company was cleared of wrongdoing but the interest generated by the investigation led to a surge in online articles and blogs, which in turn generated further comment. Many of the blogs originated in other countries and local lawyers were unable to help.

Rather than asking individual bloggers and newspapers to remove content, which would be time-consuming and probably ineffective, we created positive content that reflected the company's true position. To do this, we conducted in-depth research into the company, analysed the results and created new messaging by – among other strategies – rebuilding their website and producing several short films. Through software that we provided, our client could then track internet content in real time to measure the improvement in their online reputation.