Implementing a Local Reviews Strategy
The emphasis placed upon reviews in our consumer driven market is unquestionable. Reviews have been and will remain one of the easiest and most effective ways of getting more business online. If you have dozens of glowing reviews and a 5 star rating in your Google Business Listing then congratulations, you can stop reading now and take an early lunch! For the rest of us, we are constantly chasing that elusive carrot.
Evaluate yourself on the following questions.
Are you actually trying to get more reviews?
I’ve lost count of how many people tell me they wish they had more reviews and have no idea why people aren’t going right to Google and talking about their wonderful experience. But when I ask them what they’ve done to try and get more they simply stare at me with this blank expression that says, “Oh, you mean I actually have to DO something?” Yes! Your first step is getting more reviews is to actually try something — anything — and see if it works.
Now, assuming you are trying to get reviews…
Do you know your happy customers?
Asking random customers/patients to leave you a review may work, but asking your happy patients will always work way better. Know who you have pleased. Find out who your champions are and encourage them to head out there and leave you a nice review.
Do you personally respond to your reviews?
Responding to positive AND negative reviews is a great way to build credibility and promote others to leave a review. People want to know they aren’t just shouting into the wind. Be genuine and smart about how you respond, especially where privacy laws are concerned, but do respond.
Who is asking for reviews?
Is it just the secretary at the front desk? A placard on your desk? Have you personally looked someone in the eye and said, “I would appreciate your honest feedback. Would you mind leaving me your honest feedback in a review on Google?” You’d be surprised what might happen when you simply ask a direct question that comes across like a personal favor and not a chore.
Have you tried asking in more than one way?
Asking in person is nice, but sometimes people forget to go home and write you that perfect review. Have you tried following up via email? Even snail mail can work. Reminders go a long way.
Are your local profiles optimized and easy to find?
This is probably one of the most important things you can do when building an online presence: Ensure your local listings are optimized! Do you have duplicate listings? Close them. Are your name, address, and phone numbers 100% identical on all listings? If not, fix it. Need help? Give us a call (888.525.6360) and we’ll make sure you’re all set.
Have you kept at it?
Trying a strategy for a few weeks at a time isn’t enough for you to throw your hands up and say it’s not working. In fact, you really can’t determine a success or a failure in less than 90 days. The key to improving your online presence won’t be found in a short-lived campaign. Sometimes trying to obtain more reviews means changing the way in which you do business.