Customer reviews and testimonials are today’s Word Of Mouth. And word of mouth is still the best form of advertising we’re likely to see. People trust it. Yet it’s free.
Online reputation management is critical today.
The reason is that people are now doing the research on their phone, computer, or smart device before they spend their money. This is where your reviews hit pay dirt. Or not.
Review readers are trying to avoid the bad, the boring, and the embarrassing. They’re hoping for good endorphins. Like the reviewers, these readers expect to get what they pay for… perhaps more but not less.
When you’re planning to dine out, you might learn about the cuisine from a food critic’s review. But if you suspect you and your friends might not get the same red carpet treatment the critic got, your preferred reading will be the customer reviews.
Here you’ll decide if the restaurant is too intimate, too noisy… if the service looks likely to be condescending or AWOL… or whether the food will satisfy your most picky companion.
Always Be Responding
As a customer, reviews give you inside information. As a business owner, this is gold.
You want to put yourself in the picture. One of the keys to success is seeing where your business is failing.
That’s not to say the ‘Feedback’ experience is without its awkward moments. But you’d be making a big mistake if you were to choose to avoid managing it properly.
Acknowledging reviewers is a good thing. A very good thing.
What Can I Do About Bad Reviews?
It takes only a minute or two to acknowledge your critic, thank them for their time, and offer a reasonable solution to their problem.
Provide a point of contact where their issue can be resolved directly. Do not engage in any kind of online argument.
Businesses that show they care tend to be respected by review readers. Prompt, level-headed responses will hose down most negative reviews.
Inspiration Can Come In Any Form
Managing your feedback is the getting of wisdom. It can present new marketing angles.
For example, that new product or service you have up your sleeve might bridge the divide… You could, in replying to a negative review, announce your new-fangled remedy for such problems. Or perhaps a whole new level of customer service is about to emerge with the appointment of your business’s new manager.
Reviews can be a surrogate poll for your marketplace. You might, for example, see reasons to consider more dietary options for your café’s menu. Or you might decide your logbook services could include a full tank of fuel.
Your goal in business is to understand your finances, your sales pipeline, and your customers’ lifecycle. Improving customer engagement and loyalty is locked into all 3.
Can I Get Help Managing My Reviews?
You can’t tamper with your reviews. It’s just not cricket. The ACCC is watching.
Unless the review is fake or misleading, it has to stay. But don’t panic. Local Web Experts provides an Online Reputation Management Service that gives you control over your online reviews. Not only can you fix your online reputation, you can improve it. Get in touch with us today about this time-saving, reputation-saving game changer.
You can learn more about responding to online reviews in our previous article: