There is no question that your practice needs to get more positive reviews, but getting more happy customers to post reviews takes time and resources. In addition, when your practice generates positive reviews, what can you do to get more mileage out of them?
Tips To Get More Positive Reviews
The following are some quick tips to help you start generating more positive reviews:
- Attitude: You and your team need to approach reviews with a positive attitude, not a defeatist approach or feel as though you are groveling for help. The vast majority of your clients like you and their results, and want to do nice things for people they know and appreciate. Give them the opportunity to participate in the success of your practice with the expectation that they want to help.
- Timing: Timing is everything when it comes to generating more positive reviews. Your practice needs to identify the most effective time to invite your clients to share their experience. Depending on the type of service and timeframe to deliver positive results, you may find that the timing can be different from one client to the next. However, the timelier you can make your invitation, the better the results.
- Messaging: To avoid the awkwardness of the “can you post a positive review” question, I suggest you present the request as part of your customer service. An alternative: “We always appreciate feedback from our clients. Can you tell us how we did?” Getting a personal, verbal confirmation from the client that they will do it is essential. If you leave out this step in the process, you will not see the same level of follow-through.
- Delivery: I prefer you not corner your clients and put them “on the spot” to post a review right at that time, unless they request to do so (in some instances they will, so be sure you have the tools and means to help them do it). In most cases, however, I suggest you let them know you are sending a quick email so he/she can “let us know how we did.” I also suggest leveraging a review marketing platform/software to help in this process. The key with email is that they are already online, and quick links can make it easy and convenient. Review cards that you hand out are less convenient and more often than not, are put aside for later and eventually discarded.
- Diversify: Utilizing a review marketing platform can also help you direct clients to post on target review platforms where you want to build your brand. Identify and prioritize the most important review platforms and drive them to your practice profiles. Eventually, as you build enough reviews on your high priority review websites, you will want to spread reviews onto other secondary review websites to solidify your online brand and elevate the credibility of your reviews. Concentrating them all reviews on one review website will look manipulated to prospects and search engines.
Tips To Get More Impact From Your Reviews
If your practice goes through the hard work of 1) delivering high-level services and result 2) investing in building strong client relationships and 3) earns positive reviews, then not taking full advantage of them would be wasted resources and opportunities. Here are some tips to boost the impact of those great reviews:
- Monitor: An essential part of an effective review marketing strategy is to monitor your target review sites and receive notifications when clients post a review. Not only do you want to gauge the success of your efforts and see how your online brand is developing, you also need timely updates so you can take follow up actions. A review management platform can help your practice with both of these items.
- Acknowledge: Most business owners only focus on responding to negative reviews. They get fixated on these one-off, negative posts, wasting emotional energy and time. At the same time, they overlook their greatest opportunity: maximizing the positive relationship with your practice’s greatest advocates created through them posting positive reviews. These same clients that are willing to go out and publicly promote your business are also the ones more likely to talk about you and your practice to friends and family, and send you referrals. When you reply or comment on their review, you acknowledge that you saw it and appreciate their time and efforts. If you don’t, they will assume you never saw it and feel they wasted their time.
- Thank: I also suggest you take this acknowledgement a step farther and mail them a personal thank you note. More and more people are posting reviews about a variety of businesses, and this is another way your practice can “stand out” to your biggest spokespersons. Since you will likely be the only business to mail them a personal thank you message, it has a bigger impact and the tangible note makes you more memorable.
- Promote: Surprisingly, many practices that go through all the work to secure high quality reviews, simply wait for potential customers to stumble on the review websites where they were posted. Prospective clients are too important, and reviews are too valuable to hope they meet up at some point during the decision-making process. Your marketing needs to promote your reviews as a distinguishing feature of your practice. Real third-party endorsements and comments about your practice need to be a priority on your site, in blog posts, social media, newsletters, and even review-related keyword phrases need to be incorporated into your SEO strategy and pages.
- Follow Up: One of the most important aspects of the review marketing is to leverage your best sales resources with your highest-quality opportunities (prospects). Whether you choose to present your reviews to your prospects early in the decision-making process or as part of your closing strategy, links to your glowing reviews must be part of your sales process. There are a couple of ways you can share them with your prospects.
The first option is to link directly to the business’ profile on the target review site (Google My Business, Yelp, BBB, industry review websites, etc.).In this case you want to choose the platform(s) that makes the biggest impact and you have been driving your happy clients to post on.
The second and more preferred strategy is to send them to a Google search for “Reviews + practice name.” If your practice has diversified your review marketing and secured strong reviews on a wide variety of websites, Google will display a number of review websites with your glowing reviews. By letting Google serve up your reviews to your prospect, it adds another layer of credibility to your reviews.If you choose this latter option, be sure to occasionally check the results to make sure you are comfortable with the results.