Marketing Hacks to Formulate a Successful Reputation StrategyAugust 7, 2020
Connection is a precious commodity across all industries. In the business world, it is the foundation of brand awareness strategies. It is the key for building trust with customers. Unfortunately, customer trust in businesses has slowly been fading. “HubSpot Research found that customers trust recommendations from friends and family over any type of online marketing and advertising your brand can create.” (Source)
Trust is easier to garner when a connection is already established. In present times, building connection has been challenged by social distancing; which can often feel more like social isolation. For the safety of many, it is essential that we keep practicing social distancing everywhere we go. It’s important to remember that though the world may feel distanced, we are not alone– “we are all in this together”. Intentional virtual connection is needed on all fronts in order to restore and retain customer trust. As business owners and marketers, it is important to recognize how purposeful we need to be with our outreach strategies.
Oftentimes, the first impression we gain from a business is from their online reviews. If the business or service is unfamiliar, most individuals would rather take the advice from a handful of strangers than a sales representative. In order to develop trust with your potential customers, your online reputation needs to be on point. Once customers and clients are through your virtual doors, be diligent to champion their customer experience in order to create a deeper connection with them.
Here are a few quick hacks on how to formulate a successful reputation strategy in order to win over your customers.
Follow Up with Buyers
First step to building your reputation success strategy is to make sure you follow up with your customers and ask how their experience was with your business. Though this step may seem commonsensical, many small businesses fail to ask their customers to write reviews on their products or service. There are a few barriers that often hold small business owners back when considering reaching out to clients for reviews. Here are a few examples:
- “Reaching out is intrusive and spammy. I don’t want to bombard my customers to leave a review when they can decide for themselves to leave a review.”
- “Requesting for new reviews is too time consuming and not worth the effort.”
- “No news is good news. I’d rather not get any feedback at all in case the customer is not happy with my service.”
Please note that all these concerns are valid and that these perspectives are extremely common among many small business owners. Though you could look at requesting for online reviews through email or text as intrusive, it is beneficial to remember that any reviews gained helps the community learn more about your business and the quality of excellence that you deliver. People desire to support good businesses backed by great individuals.
To make writing reviews for your business easier, there are various things that you can do in order to simplify the process for your customers.
Reach Out At A Convenient Time
The best time to ask for a review:
If you’re trying to get more reviews, you’ll want to optimize exactly when you ask your customers for reviews. The two best times to ask for reviews are between 2-3 PM and 6-7PM because people are often visiting businesses during their lunch break or after work. These hours are generally the exact times that consumers are reflecting on their experiences.
The worst time to ask for a review:
Most people are not usually writing reviews from the dead hours of 2 AM to 3 AM. What’s interesting is that in the morning, from the time people wake up (say, 6 AM to 7 AM) until lunch time (anywhere between 12 PM to 1 PM), review generation is pretty slow; at least relative to the amount of review-writing activity that occurs after lunch.
Focus On the Customer Experience
At the end of the day, the goal is to make a customer, not just a sale. Some businesses are too focused on making the sale, but don’t pay nearly enough attention to satisfying customers’ wants and needs. To truly propel growth for your business, manage the entire customer experience and offer next-level support — including at touchpoints after the purchase or sales transaction.
Optimize Your Content
A huge part of your customer’s experience will be how they interact with your content online. Has your website, review platforms and social media pages been updated recently? Are you utilizing the Instagram Shopping feature for your brand? Does the user experience of your third party review request pages make sense? If you are shaking your head ‘no’ to all these questions, it may be time to sit back and go through your content from your customer’s perspective. If the process is confusing for you, it will definitely be more confusing for the customer.
At the end of the day, excellent marketing is rooted in understanding and caring for your customers. If your reputation strategy hasn’t been making the impact you desire, consider applying these steps to optimize your outreach. At the forefront of all marketing tactics that you do, always remember the heart of the people you serve and look for ways to bring forth joy in their customer experience. Champion them and they in turn will champion you and your business.
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