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The Low Hanging Fruit of Reputation Management: How to Pick and Maximize Your Engagement

Finding the best way to use limited marketing resources should be the goal of every business organization. When faced with multiple means of amplifying marketing message, leaders must take difficult decisions and prioritize their budget and human resources in a way that allows them to get the best bang for their buck.

Understanding marketing ROI in more traditional campaigns, efforts and outreach can be quite simple and straightforward mainly because businesses and organizations have the benefit of experience that can be combined with historical performance data. When it comes to reputation management, businesses are generally plagued with questions and constantly searching for direction that will equip them to make better decisions on how to allocate their resources and budget in order to obtain the best possible results on review-based marketing channels such as TripAdvisor, Google, Yelp, Foursquare and others.

In a perfect world resources and time would not have to be a consideration and businesses could in theory engage with every review website using every single marketing tool available. But we live in a world where businesses are constrained by financial reality and winning the race is about making the best possible decisions.

At ReviewTrackers, we have spent years dedicated to gaining valuable business intelligence designed to equip businesses regardless of size with the data needed to make smart business moves. Today we want to share with you how to identify and maximize your best and most achievable business opportunities available via engagement with the most popular review sites.

Get to Know Your Customers & Their Preferred Online Tools

If a business desires to grow their customer base the very first step is to get to know their current customers and the way their current customers prefer to be engaged. Understanding customer preferences can be as simple as sending a survey asking among other things how they were introduced to your business and what are their favored review sites when looking for new businesses.

A better understanding of your customers will equip you to put together outreach campaigns that seek to target customers similar to your current pool and likely to have affinity with your products and services. Having this knowledge will also equip you to prioritize daily reputation management tasks such as review responses or brand updates via your profile and app-based promotional offers.

Go For Review Sites Popular for Your Segment

If you have not yet gained momentum and analyzing your own review patterns is not sufficient to help you make a good decision on how prioritize the invest of your efforts and energies in certain review sites you may want to consider taking a prioritization approach based on segmentation. That is, pick the review site with the greatest footprint for your segment.

For example, if you are a restaurant your efforts might get better results if directed via review sites like Yelp, Foursquare and OpenTable. On the other hand, if you are a healthcare provider, your best bet is to prioritize specialized websites such as Healthgrades.com and Vitals.com. (Check out how small restaurants can leverage reviews to their advantage.)

Engage in Free Lead-Generating Specials & Promos

In addition to paid campaigns, many popular review sites from Google My Business to Foursquare offer businesses the opportunity to launch mini engagement campaigns aimed at securing additional leads and traffic. A well-designed promo can be a great booster for a business with no investment on their part aside from the direct expense of running the promo with this type of implementation the business stands a good chance of gaining new customers at a reasonable cost.

In addition to new customer acquisition the business can tailor the special or promo in such a way that it increases loyalty and repeat visits that often will result in great online feedback from loyal customers. One of the most popular ways to launch specials is by using the Foursquare Specials feature that is triggered by check-ins.

Track Your Progress & Focus on Your Best Performers

Once the ball is rolling and a business is taking the necessary steps to manage your online reputation in a way that it churns out new business opportunities, it is time to refine their approach by identifying what is working specifically for them.

Yelp, for example, has tools within their dashboard that will allow you to receive reports regarding specific customer engagements. Once a business unit has identified their best performers it is wise to invest the bulk of their resources in maximizing opportunities within that website. Once you have mastered your processes from a high-performing review websites you can then seek out additional opportunities to further expand your market reach by tackling lesser performers.

Effective review and reputation management is not exclusively about knowing what your customers are saying. It is about using the information to the benefit of your organization and seeking to improve and grow as your learn from your customer’s feedback.

Kevin Kent

Kevin is the Director of Finance and Operations at ReviewTrackers. Every day he finds creative ways to solve business owners' problems and identifies key issues to help them achieve top results.

Discussion

  1. Jay Bird

    Great article Kevin. Once again you pointed out some key things when it come to online reviews. But, I would like to know about the part of sending surveys to your customers. How should I approach to that part of the business. I always thought that asking your customers about filling out a survey will just chase them off. Nobody likes to be bothered with filling out such things. How can I manage that, without chasing my customers away?

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