Reputation management is a key part of any effective digital marketing strategy. According to a recent survey, consumers need to read an average of ten reviews before being able to trust a business.
In fact, online reviews have become so important that Google has even started including them in their search algorithm. This means businesses with a lot of positive reviews are more likely to show up in search results and become a best seller in their industry.
So, how do you effectively manage your reviews and what can you do to encourage your customers to leave you feedback?
Keep reading for six tips that will help you master reputation management.
Ask Your Customers to Leave a Review
One of the easiest ways to do this is to use an automated email campaign. This allows you to follow up with customers after they’ve purchased from you and ask them to leave you a review.
Here are a few tips for your email:
- Send Your Email 3 - 5 Days After the Purchase: Make sure to give your customers time to use your product before asking for a review. Three to five days is usually the ideal time to wait.
- Start By Thanking Them: You don’t want to start off your email by asking for a favor. Instead, thank them for their purchase and let them know if they have any questions to contact you for assistance. It’s a small thing, but it goes a long way to building a positive customer experience.
- Add Value: In addition to the above advice, you can also add value by including tips to help them get the most out of your product/service or sending attachments with useful information.
- Ask Them for an Honest Review: Frame it as you’re looking to collect honest feedback from your customers, rather than simply wanting positive reviews to help generate more sales.
- Include a Link: Provide a link in the email that takes customers right to the page where they can leave you a review. This could be a link to Google, Amazon, Yelp, or any other review site.
Monitor the open and clickthrough rates of your emails and make changes as needed. Once this email is optimized it should continue to generate a good amount of reviews for you.
Respond to All Your Reviews
It’s important to respond to all your reviews, both good and bad. 53% of consumers expect businesses to respond to their reviews, but most do not. So, not only is this a good way to build trust with your customers, but it will also help you gain an advantage over your competitors.
Remember, your responses are public and will be read by others. Take advantage of this space by following these tips:
- Thank Them for Their Review: Whether the review is positive or negative you should always thank people for leaving feedback to let others know you encourage it.
- Mention Something from the Review in Your Response: By mentioning something specific from their review in your response it lets people know there’s a real person writing it, rather than a bot.
- Include Selling Features/Promotions Where Applicable: Remember, potential customers will likely be reading your responses, so when it makes sense highlight some of your best selling features or mention any promotions you might have.
- Include Your Business Name and Keywords: If you’re responding to a positive review, be sure to include the name of your business and relevant keywords in your response. This will increase the chances of the review showing up in search results.
Here’s an example of a great response to a positive review:
Responding to reviews might seem time-consuming, but if you do it consistently you’ll see a big boost in your online reputation.
Respond to Negative Reviews
Everyone receives negative reviews from time to time. However, if you deal with them properly it will limit their impact on your business.
Here’s the best way to respond to negative reviews:
- Apologize: Always apologize, even if their claims are unfounded. This will show both the reviewer and other customers that you’re caring and empathetic.
- Ask for an Opportunity to Make it Right: Encourage the customer to reach out to you or visit your business again so you have a chance to correct your mistakes.
- Move the Conversation Offline: If you need to continue the conversation make sure that it happens somewhere private so it’s not visible to the public.
Below is an example of the right way to respond to a negative review:
Negative reviews are always tough, but if you follow these steps you might even be able to turn a negative experience into a positive one.
Monitor Your Feedback Across the Web
There are dozens of different places where you could receive an online review and you need to stay on top of all of them as much as possible. Otherwise, you might miss out on opportunities and unintentionally neglect some negative reviews.
Here are some of the most common places you’ll receive reviews:
- Trip Advisor
- Better Business Bureau
- Yellow Pages
For many of these sites, you might find a profile has already been created for your business without you knowing about it. Make sure to claim and update your profile, and then begin monitoring your reviews there.
Use Social Media
Platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter are a great place to engage with your customers and build trust. Having an active social media presence will allow you to start conversations and answer questions from current and potential customers.
All of this adds to your customers’ experience with your brand. If you’re regularly posting quality content and responding to inquiries it’s going to positively affect your online reputation.
You’ll also want to monitor any mentions of your business and brand across all platforms. Make sure to thank people for positive comments and address any negative posts about you the same way you’d handle a negative review.
If you want to grow your online presence and build your brand then reputation management is a must. It may seem daunting at first, but if you stick with it and follow the advice above your business will benefit greatly from your efforts.