When you’re looking to spend a bit of money on a product or service but aren’t sure where to go, you might consider asking around for some advice.
Getting an honest appraisal from another person can often make the difference between committing to a purchase or deciding against it. Online reviews have become more and more important to manufacturers, service providers and businesses as the digital equivalent of word-of-mouth recommendations. You have probably even used them yourself on Amazon, where the range of products is so vast that reviews often provide the only way to distinguish between different items. In fact, 92% of consumers check online reviews, so when a customer searches for your business online you’d be wise to have an idea of the kind of reviews they’re likely to encounter. We offer an online review monitoring service to ensure you’re in tune with what’s being said about your business.
Where do reviews go?
The type of services or products a business offers will dictate the places that reviews are likely to be left. Typically directories such as Yell and 192 are used for reviews of traders, whilst Facebook and Google are often the choice for restaurants and location reviews. Of course we’re speaking very broadly here, there are thousands of sites that can be used to leave reviews of all kinds of businesses and it’s impossible to know where customers will choose to post their comments. What you can be sure of is that other customers will pay attention to what people have to say about your business. Our review monitoring service saves you the hassle of searching far and wide yourself by collecting all reviews of your business into one convenient, easy-to-digest weekly report.
How our online review monitoring service helps
Our review monitoring service puts you in the driving seat of the reputation of your business. We collect data from hundreds of possible review sites; directories, social media channels and databases. The information is collated into one email and delivered to you each week. How can our review monitoring service help you? Armed with a fuller knowledge of what customers are saying, you can start to refine whatever it is about your business that people like, or set to work fixing the things that they don’t. Perhaps one customer in particular feels unhappy and has decided to leave a negative review, if you miss it, it could seem that you’ve ignored it or aren’t interested in providing extra support to that customer. If you know about it you have a chance to reply and put things right, it’s the kind of thing that could make a big difference to conversion rates, if customers can see that you care they’re far more likely to commit to a purchase. Not only that, some analysts calculate that 95% of unhappy customers return to a business again if their issue is resolved quickly and efficiently. With our weekly alerts you can be sure you won’t miss a thing.
Reviews and rankings
Review monitoring is a vital SEO tool, since Google’s algorithms factor reviews in when calculating ranking positions, particularly with local maps listings. By responding to, and interacting with, customers that leave comments you stand far more chance of climbing into the top 3-pack map listings. Our monitoring software prevents you from missing customer feedback so you can respond in a timely manner, the quicker you can get back to a customer, the more attentive and active your business is seen to be.
Our review monitoring service is available for only £10 per month, per business location. Get in touch today and tune in to what’s being said about your business. We also offer a PR service to respond to and interact with customers across the internet on your behalf, call us today for a chat about how we can help you take control of your business’ reputation and build up customer trust today.
Frequently asked questions
Building and maintaining an active presence for your business online – top tips using social media
When you run a small to medium size business, you often carry out the roles of several employees within a larger company. Hopefully this article can help shed some light on getting the most out of your limited and valuable time, working on internet marketing and public relations using social media.
“Businesses who are relentless in building a following on social media are in fact creating their own publishing platforms, growing their marketing channels and content distribution networks. It is a digital asset that grows every year. Over time it can provide huge leverage and marketing independence if done right.”
Understand the demographics
- 72% of all internet users are now active on social media
- 18-29 year olds have an 89% usage
- The 30-49 bracket sits at 72%
- 60 percent of 50 to 60 year olds are active on social media
- In the 65 plus bracket, 43% are using social media
- Time spent on Facebook per hour spent online by country. Here are the top three. USA citizens get the top gong at 16% followed by the Aussies at 14 minutes and the Brits at 13 minutes.
- 71% of users access social media from a mobile device.
The paradigm of social media only being used by the younger generations should be put to rest now!
Harnessing social media for your business
Social media is an often overlooked tool at your disposal to keep in touch with customers, keeping them interested and up to date with your services. Many people feel like social media has a life of its own, that they will never be able to get the hang of it, but remember social media can reach potential customers that wouldn’t normally get to know that your company even exists.
Tweets are something we see in our everyday lives, at the beginning of our favourite shows there are hashtags displayed on the screen, our news programs engage with viewers by reading out live tweets and adverts run competitions that utilise tweets, shares and #hashtags. You can make the most of this by spending a little time getting to know twitter.
Top tip: discover new accounts
Try checking out the “Discover” tab within your twitter account and see what is trending in your area. Twitter’s algorithms are constantly trying to connect you with other people and companies it sees as relevant to you, often these are not ideal, but occasionally twitter will suggest companies and accounts to follow that you would never have considered and could potentially open new avenues for generating leads for your business.
Diversify your lead generation sources
Your online presence is all about balance, just as with the rest of your business, so a good mix of sharing your own website’s content, social media messages from other accounts and up to date blogs will make your company stand out from the competition. By giving your customers something interesting to read they will build up more of an affinity to you and your services than they would to a company that just posts a flyer through the door.
Rather than forcing your marketing messages onto potential customers, seed your messages across multiple areas where customers could stumble across your brand, to reap the rewards of “pull marketing” instead of the usual interruption style “push marketing”
Social Media Stats you NEED to know
- Social media marketing budgets are projected to double in the next five years. (SocialTimes)
- The top three social networks used by B2B marketers are LinkedIn (91%); Twitter (85%); and Facebook (81%).
- However, just 62% of marketers say that LinkedIn is effective, while 50% say the same for Twitter and only 30% of B2B marketers view Facebook as effective. (FlipCreator)
- This one may surprise you: Google+ actually averages more visits per month than Facebook. Google+ receives 1.2 billion visits per month compared to Facebook’s 809 million. (iMedia Connection) Building a solid presence on Google+ is now an essential tool for B2B marketing
- Grandma and grandpa are crashing teenagers’ social media party. The fastest-growing age cohort on Twitter is 55-to-64 year-olds, up 79% since 2012.
- And the 45-54 age bracket is the fastest-growing group on both Facebook and Google+. (Fast Company)
- The collective spending power of millennials will surpass that of Baby Boomers by 2018, and millennials will comprise 75% of the global labor force by 2025. (AllTwitter)
- Millennials are, in general, not loyal to employers (91% expect to stay in a job for less than three years) but are loyal to brands (95% want brands to court them actively).(AllTwitter)
Build a personality for your brand
A simple tweet a day about the weather in the local area, an event in your town or to a local cafe you went for lunch will build up a personalised image to your followers increasing the chances of common ground, beliefs and ethics – extending the influence of your branding beyond the visuals of a simple logo and colour scheme, to more fundamental emotional triggers.
These followers could one day need a service from you and building an active social presence to get visibility on their social media streams increases the likelihood of your business being there in their social streams at the moment they need your service. If they feel passionately about ethical issues in common with you, such as supporting family-run businesses, buying organic or being eco-friendly, you will multiply your chances of converting these leads into customers.
Build a blog to prove yourself within your industry
By adding blog content to your website you can link to these pages in your tweets and social messages and give your followers something more involved to read about. Have you noticed how many people walk around looking at their phones, sitting on a bus, train, waiting for a friend? People entertain themselves looking at social media and keeping that content fresh will mean they always have a reason to check back to see what you are doing.
Click here to see a great example of small business blogging to market a chocolate manufacturing company.
Some tips to keep in mind:
- Don’t try too hard to sell products directly through twitter – post links to product pages that people can visit if they choose.
- Acting like a REAL person on twitter will make for a more interesting follow
- Post real links to real content that are related to your industry – become a ‘content curator’ to get far more followers
- Follow interesting people yourself, support other local business and they will support you back.
- Engage with customers that retweet and reply to you.
Other articles in our blog and internet marketing information category might hopefully fill some other gaps in your knowledge and allow you to generate a higher return from your investment of time and resources online.
First of all don’t panic, it’s not the end of the world. In fact, negative feedback can be far more useful for your business than positive! Negative comments give you a chance to demonstrate your professionalism in dealing with an unhappy customer and your dedication to outstanding customer service. A negative review with a mature and helpful response from a business can do wonders for boosting prospective customer confidence in the business.
With over 1/2 billion people worldwide using facebook on a daily basis, and over 300k people using Twitter, it has now become essential for every business to at least have a basic presence on these networks.
In case you’re still not sure if it’s worth investing time and money in your brand’s social media presence – recent updates over the past 2 years to the algorithm used by Google (and others such as Bing, Ask, Yahoo) to rank websites in their search results has started using signals from social networks to get an idea if brands are real and deserve to rank well on search engine results pages.
As you may know it is possible for social media channels to become a major drain on time and resources, due to the changes, distractions and now advertising featured on the pages. So the best recommendation is to get our help to consolidate your efforts and get advice on the best tools and tactics to actually make efficient use of these new marketing channels.
Top recommendations for social media marketing efficiency
- Avoid using the actual twitter or Facebook interfaces – use a management suite to monitor and publish from one place with minimum distractions
- We use agency standard tools that are expensive to run, but allow us to manage our clients’ campaigns effectively
- Please get in touch if you would like advice on the best social media management tools to use for your business
What social media messages should you spend your time broadcasting?
- New announcements from your brand.
- Teaser previews of offerings you are working on.
- Related interesting news from the industry.
- Trivia related to your product: history, technology
- Ask for suggestions: people love to help someone out
- Events you are holding: this informs as well as gets you attendees
- Events you are participating in: this shows you are active.
- Helping people find opportunities
- Helping people solve problems is the best thing you can do to promote your brand
- Popular events: tweet about the upcoming sports events, festivals, etc.
- Regular industry news: yup, this doesn’t hurt if mixed in.
- Sales announcements: Tweet about any sales announcements you might have.
- Job openings: Tell people about open positions, both with your brand and at other places you know.
- Ask for customer feedback: Invite people to share their experiences with your brand.
- Participate in the relevant hashtags(eg: #news), and get more visibility.
- Set up and announce tweet chats based on brand-related hashtags.
- Follow people and make acknowledgement via tweets.
- Thank people who have recently followed you.
- Post the latest updates from your blog along with the link.
- Direct people to other social media channels you own by tweeting about them.
- Search on your brand name and respond to tweets that are about you.
Our tools run daily scans, these scans will be assembled into reports and delivered to you as often as you like. Most often once a week, or once a fortnight, depending on the level of interaction the business gets. If you would prefer us to respond to customers on your behalf and provide real time support and interaction we certainly can.
This is a classic advertising tactic, but could be seen as being a little dishonest. Whilst we wouldn’t encourage you to do it, we can’t stop you. Just bear in mind that if you provide the kind of positive customer experience that leads people to submit genuine positive reviews and feedback you’ll achieve far more steady and reliable long term growth than if you fake it.