Thanks to the amazing advancements in technology, customers have faster access to the businesses, products, and services they want than ever before. It’s an amazing time to be a small business, with social media leading the way for constant communication and engagement for a fraction of old school paper marketing prices.
But like most things in life, the pros come with a few cons as well, and immediate access to your business means having to protect your reputation more fiercely than ever before. Gone are the days of slow, word of mouth reputations and paper listings. Now, current- and most importantly, potential- customers can look up a business within a matter of seconds to see where you stand amongst their peers’ recommendations. Maintaining and managing your reputation- especially online- can be a full-time job, but with an effective team and a few great resources, you can make sure your business stays in shining standing for all to see. Start managing your business' reputation effectively and efficiently to bring more business in. We work in and around San Antonio and work with small businesses to help them grow and conquer.
Build It Up
Don’t wait until your first good (or bad) review to start working on your online reputation. Instead, take a proactive approach and simply ASK satisfied customers for their feedback. It’s important to build a collection of insightful recommendations or reviews to use in different formats. If you don’t feel comfortable directly asking a client or customer for a review, then use the various tools and plug-ins available to position the option in front of them. Simple pop-ups at the end of a purchase or a ‘thank you’ e-mail with a link to leave a review are all indirect- yet effective- ways to record glowing endorsements.
Control and Act
Once your online presence is established and your reputation shines nothing but 4 and 5 stars, don’t forget to do daily or weekly checks to ensure no changes in your status. Just as easily as a customer can leave a raving review, a disgruntled client- justified or not- can tank your ratings by leaving horrible comments and scoring your business low. The good news? Bad reviews are STILL a great way to show your value by turning a negative into a positive. Make sure that you are responding in a personal manner, not just some automated response to every comment- especially the bad ones. Reflect on what the commenter said and approach it from a place of education for everyone involved. The last thing you want to do is berate the customer for leaving a bad review; remember everyone else can see it too, so handle it with care, compassion and make an effort to resolve the issue.
Not only can you respond with grace to the (rare) negative reviews but also you can use the positive reviews to further grow your business. Place them on your website, use them in e-mails or even create an ad with them. Use the various endorsements to highlight your company’s true strengths, helping to attract potential customers to your services. Now more than ever, customers are searching online and via social media to find the items and services they need. They depend on what they’re reading to direct them to upstanding and quality companies, often from simply what they read online.
Use Your Tools
Like we said above, managing your company’s reputation is no easy feat. It takes time, attention and consistency. Outsourcing this process is a great way to relinquish the burden, while ensuring that your business will remain in outstanding status. Companies, such as 2Ten Marketing, are equipped with experienced teams and amazing tools, such as Reputation Loop, that helps companies to stay on top of what’s being said about them throughout the Internet. With real time reporting and legitimate funnels to receive enthusiastic reviews, Reputation Loop is helping to close the gap between businesses and the reviews they have- and the ones they’re missing out on.
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It’s amazing how fast one negative review, or fabricated comment from a disgruntled troll, can put your reputation in a tailspin. Before you know it, you’re spending most of your day arguing with a person behind a screen, on hold with customer service robots trying to have the comment removed and banging your head against a wall because of the amount of times this review has been seen- or worse… liked! This isn’t where you shine as a business owner, and it definitely doesn’t sound like you’re doing yourself any favors by being emotionally invested. Leave the reputation management to professionals, like us at 2Ten Marketing, who specialize in building, maintaining and fixing your online reputation right here in San Antonio, Texas.
Let us work our magic!