The Game Has Changed: 4 Tips to Adapt Your Online Review Strategy

As all business owners and entrepreneurs know, the strategies and tools for encouraging word of mouth are always changing. This is in fact, one of the most exciting and challenging aspects of owning or running a business. Recently the game has changed again, and everyone is trying to reevaluate the way they look at client interaction. 

With this new shift in the business landscape, how do we adjust? We believe there are a few ways that your reputation can not only survive during this season, but benefit from new processes for client interaction stimulation. Let’s talk about an issue we all struggle with in our businesses: How do we get people to start talking about our business?

In our current media landscape, this translates to a consumer or client sharing their opinions via online review sites, such as Yelp, GoogleMyBusiness, and many more. Did you know that 86% of customers read reviews for local businesses? (Source) Or that only 53% of people would consider using a business with less than 4 stars? Our online reputation is one of the most important factors affecting a consumer’s decision to buy.

Think about your own personal experiences researching the best products, places, or things to try. Did you scour the internet to look at Google reviews regarding the latest self-care product or online workout subscription that you wanted to try? If you did, were you more interested in the 2 star rated product or the 4.8 star rated product?

Online reviews are the closest resource our communities can use as word of mouth recommendations from complete strangers. So how can we utilize our online reviews in order to create more positive buzz surrounding our businesses? 

Andy Sernovitz defines word of mouth marketing (source) as these two simple things:

  1. Giving people a reason to talk about your stuff
  2. Making it easier for that conversation to take place

It is our job to make word of mouth marketing feasible regardless of what the world may throw at us. Here are our top 4 tips to generate more positive conversations surrounding your business:

Build Transparency & Connection through Social

With the rise of influencers and social media advertising, modern consumers crave authenticity and can feel disillusioned when seeing “#ad” show up in paid posts’ descriptions. Consumers want to know they can trust the businesses they support and that the recommendations they see are not simply bought. 84% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. (Source) For these consumers, positive online reviews may just as well have been a friend telling them how great your business is.

This is why sharing authentic positive reviews on your social media platforms is essential. Additionally, showcasing recent positive reviews on social media regarding how your company is handling this crisis is a great way to boost positive PR for your business. 

With people currently having so much free time being at home, there are a lot of potential customers who may come across your social media platforms who could see these positive review social media shares. A single video post highlighting a great review on one of your customer’s experiences could be the pull that brings other prospective leads to your company’s virtual doors.

Build New Strategies with Free Resources

Many individuals have been greatly affected by health concerns, social isolation, and economic hits. In regard to all that is happening, the response of many has been to offer a helping hand. There are many free resources currently available for many businesses including a free 21 day trial of ReviewPush’s full services.

In full transparency, ReviewPush always offers a free 21-day trial for any of our potential clients to try risk free. However, this may be a good resource for small business owners or entrepreneurs to utilize while trying to stay afloat. 

Using our free trial now could especially benefit those who don’t currently have an ORM platform. If you do not currently have something in place to monitor your online reputation, you can use this time to become comfortable with our tools so that once things are up-to-speed following this crisis, your business can have a smooth transition into normal operations utilizing our helpful features and tools.

Listen to Your Customers through Feedback Forms

Consumers not only crave authenticity, but they also appreciate knowing that their voice is being heard. Your consumers will know that you value them when you acknowledge their service requests, complaints, and positive responses. Moreover, requesting feedback through a first-party landing page creates a safe place where responses can be given. 

Feedback requests can function in a variety of ways for your business aside from asking just for new reviews. With many businesses having to modify their businesses, taking advantage of Feedback Requests is a great opportunity to obtain valuable information from customers during this time. Your customers and fans essentially become a marketing “focus group” for your business to help plan out company improvements and develop marketing strategies for the months to come. 

Bolster Local SEO to Create More Buzz

Local SEO serves to promote your business’ visibility on location-based searches. (Source) Many local businesses have had to face the difficulty of closing down their facilities due to the rising concerns happening in the world. Even with physical doors closed, your virtual doors can remain open. Boosting your local SEO is essential if you want to drive more traffic to your online business. One way of doing this is by utilizing embedded feeds that highlight your business’ best reviews.

Utilizing embedded feeds with schema markup, like the one ReviewPush has to offer, is huge to help improve SEO. This is important because once everything with the virus passes, many companies are going to be wanting to get as much foot traffic as possible. Online reputation could be what pushes someone to come to you vs. your competitor!

At the end of the day, let us remember that we’re all in this together. Our heart at ReviewPush is to champion our clients and to generate more positive conversations surrounding businesses. We see the entrepreneurs and small businesses who have been hurt badly by this present situation and our response is, we want to be involved in helping our global and virtual communities. If there is anything ReviewPush can do to help, please contact us and let us know.

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