REPUTATION MANAGEMENT SURVIVAL GUIDE. A BEGINNER S GUIDE for managing your online reputation to promote your local business.

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1 REPUTATION MANAGEMENT SURVIVAL GUIDE A BEGINNER S GUIDE for managing your online reputation to promote your local business.

2 About Main Street Hub: Main Street Hub is the voice for more local businesses than any other company. Our full-service marketing platform combines social media, customer reviews, mobile and marketing to help local businesses get more customers and keep them coming back while saving them valuable time. We do that by spreading word of mouth for our customers, extending their customer service, managing their online reputation, and using Main Street Hub s local business network for their benefit and for a price that works for them. We serve +7,000 Local Businesses and have crafted +4 million messages across social media channels, customer landing pages and . 2

3 Why is Reputation Management Important? Never heard of Yelp? There s a good chance they have heard of you! Even if you ve never visited review sites before, customers can still write reviews on your page. There s no denying the impact that reviews -- especially negative reviews -- can have, however, you can limit the damage they might inflict by reaching out to unhappy customers. You can also increase customer loyalty and influence public perception by following up on the positive reviews from those who love what you do. Failing to respond to your reviews leaves prospective customers in the dark about how great your business is, so they will be more inclined to use the services of a business who does consistently respond to reviews. Why is Monitoring Yelp Important? Yelp, the leading customer review app, has 83 million unique monthly mobile visitors and 79 million unique monthly desktop users. 88 % of consumers consult online reviews before making a purchase. [Reevoo] 78 % of consumers said that online reviews were important. [Inc.] 71 % of the time customers will do business with you again if your esolve a complaint in their favor. [Lee Resources] 67 % of customers noted that a bad review would prevent them using a particular service. [Lightspeed] 81 % of consumers say it s important for businesses to respond to reviews. [Inc.] 70 % of consumers change their perception of the brand after seeing a response to a review. [Bazaar Voice] 5-9 % average increase in revenue yielded by a one star higher Yelp rating. [Harvard Business School] 3

4 THE BASICS How do you get started? CLAIM YOUR PAGE If you search for your business online, you can hit a button that says Claim This Page. Click that button and go through the steps in order to be able to update information and respond to reviews going forward. FILL OUT ALL PROFILE INFORMATION. Include essential information like phone number, hours, street address and address. Also add assets like menus or other services you provide. Add links to your other digital channels, like your website and other social media platforms. The more information potential customers can learn from your page, the better! UPLOAD A BUSINESS OWNER PHOTO. It s important to have a photo so that your responses a human face. The photo will be small next to the responses you provide, so make sure it s clear and high quality. UPLOAD HIGH QUALITY PHOTOS. First impressions are everything: Your profile and cover photos are an opportunity to represent your business. TIP! Your photos should match any other social media accounts you have set up. Keeping branding consistent is a good way to familiarize your customers with your business. RESPOND TO OLD REVIEWS. If you have a lot of backed up reviews, just start by responding to the most recent ones -- that way they re the most relevant! If you don t have many reviews on your page, and all of the available ones are old, respond anyway. It still looks great, and it may even remind an old customer to give you a return visit! WRITE COMPELLING RESPONSES. This might feel challenging, but it s really worth it! It s an opportunity to sell yourself to anyone reading your reviews, and it s the perfect space to communicate what you re all about. Just remember to keep it professional and make sure it s clear, concise, and grammatically correct. 4

5 Responding to Reviews: The Good, the Bad & the Ugly The Good Take the opportunity to thank positive reviewers for putting your business in a good light. It s important to let your happy customers know how much you value what they have to say. Plus, reaching out and showing them some love is a great way to increase customer loyalty. If you only address the negative reviews, you re missing the chance to offer your gratitude to happy customers and welcome them to come back for another visit! Addressing positive reviews as well as negative reviews makes your business look good not only in the eyes of the reviewer, but also anyone else who visits your page. How to respond: Remember: The reviewer isn t the only person who will see your response, so your responses aren t just for them, but anyone looking at your page too! BE GRATEFUL This customer took time out of their day to write great things about your business. Their review will really benefit your business -- make sure they know that you re sincerely grateful. BE PERSONAL It shows that you ve actually read what they had to say, and you aren t just copying and pasting the same response to everyone. Where possible, engage with details they use in their review in your own response. BE WELCOMING Let them know that you d love to see them again, and you ll make them feel important and increase loyalty. BE STRATEGIC Repeating, highlighting, or expanding on something they ve said is a great way to let anyone reading know more about your business, what you value, and what makes you special. BE CONCISE Unless their review is really long, three to four sentences is the ideal length. 5

6 The Bad And it s not just the reviewer themselves who will be impressed by how you deal with their concerns. If people are utilizing your reviews to make a decision about your business, a lack of response only gives a negative review more credibility. But a thoughtful response showing impeccable customer service will make them view your business more favorably. How to respond: BE RECEPTIVE. If you don t look receptive to feedback, you run the risk of confirming a negative reviewer s point to anyone who sees your response. BE POSITIVE. It s not always possible, but even the worst reviews might contain a hint of positive, and three-star reviews almost certainly will. Be mindful of the bad, but be sure to emphasize the good! It forces them to focus on it, and it dilutes their criticism. Remember: Everyone s watching! So you should always be empathetic and calm, rather than defensive and angry. BE POLITE. It s important to thank reviewers for their feedback no matter what. By letting them know that you re grateful they brought the issue to your attention, you ll appear interested in improving, and this may even motivate them to give you another shot. BE VIGILANT. Make sure you are watching out for new reviews on your page. Read for details in order to clear up any misunderstandings or miscommunication as soon as possible. BE PROFESSIONAL. It s easy for your message to be misconstrued when you don t have things like body language and facial expressions to accompany your response. Even small things like punctuation can change the way your message is received by anyone reading. So be sure to stay professional at all times! It s also important to look out for spelling and grammatical errors. 6

7 The Ugly Most review sites have a flagging process that protects you from reviews that violate their Terms of Service. Yelp s flagging process is the most comprehensive. What makes a review flaggable on Yelp? Inappropriate content Conflicts of interest Promotional content Relevance Privacy Intellectual property Inappropriate language, threats, or hate speech. Solicited reviews. Spam reviews or reviews that heavily promote another business. Reviews that don t address the core customer experience. Reviews that include private information i.e. full names. Anything that has been taken from another site. TIP! You can t flag every negative review your business receives, but if you think it falls in line with these categories, give it shot, and see what happens! How to flag 1 Locate the review in question from your Business Owner Account. 2 Select the small flag at the bottom right of the review. 3 Select your reason from the drop down menu. 4 State your case in the description box provided. After submitting your request, Yelp will look into it, and you can expect to hear back from them within a few business days. Sometimes, even though a review hasn t been removed, Yelp might label it as not recommended. While that review will stay on your page, it will be much harder to find and will not affect your star-rating. TIP! Keep your descriptions short, specific, clear, and polite! 7

8 Top 4 Worst Mistakes on Review Sites (And How to Avoid Them) IGNORING THE REVIEWERS FEEDBACK Feedback is an opportunity to improve: Holding your team accountable is important, and it will prevent the same mistakes being made going forward. So, follow up on negative feedback and make changes where possible. Following up on positive feedback is just as important -- tell employees about their positive shout outs. They deserve to know they have made a difference for a customer s experience and it will motivate them going forward. Instead LOOK INTO POINTS THEY VE MADE BEFORE RESPONDING. YOU LL GET DETAILS THAT WILL HELP GUIDE YOUR BUSINESS! PUBLICLY OFFERING COMPENSATION In some situations, compensating an unhappy customer is the best thing to do -- especially when you know the customer s experience warrants it. However, it s not a good idea to do this publicly. Instead RESPOND PRIVATELY, OR ASK THE CUSTOMER TO GET IN TOUCH WITH YOU OVER THE PHONE TO DISCUSS THE MATTER FURTHER, AND IMPLY YOU D LIKE TO MAKE IT RIGHT. RESPONDING EMOTIONALLY It s important to respond as quickly as possible, but it s even more important to take time to calm down and think clearly about what you re going to say. Try not to escalate the situation because you might deter a potential customer who reads your response. Instead PASS YOUR RESPONSE BY SOMEONE WHO ISN T EMOTIONALLY INVESTED -- THEY LL LET YOU KNOW IF YOU NEED TO TONE IT DOWN. WRITING FAKE REVIEWS Whether it suspicious timing, repetitive content, or inauthentic sounding praise, online users can usually tell when a review is fake. If just one reviewer picks up on fake reviews, they will cast doubt on any positive reviews your business receives and give negative reviews more credibility. This also violates most Terms of Service, and could easily get taken down by the site itself. Instead CHECK OUT THE NEXT PAGE TO SEE HOW YOU CAN GET MORE POSITIVE REVIEWS AUTHENTICALLY! 8

9 Getting More Positive Reviews Getting more positive reviews organically doesn t require that much effort, and it ll be much better for your business! STEP 1 RESPOND The more you consistently engage, the more opportunity you have to make a great impression and receive more great reviews. STEP 2 ASK QUESTIONS Asking reviewers in a private message for more information about their experience can help you improve and motivate reviewers to give you another chance. STEP 3 PROMOTE ONLINE Sharing a positive review on your social media is a great way to promote your business online. It will make the reviewer feel special, it highlights the great things you re doing, and it draws attention to the existence of your page on a review site! Always link to the relevant page in order to make these sites as easy to access as possible. STEP 4 PROMOTE IN STORE Tell customers in your business who had a positive experience to review your business online! Reminding them to share their experience with other review site users will only help your business and increase customer loyalty. You can also do this by having a sign or flyers in front reminding customers that their reviews are important to your business. Join in lots of these kinds of conversations to increase the likelihood of a response! 9

10 Let Us Do it for You As a local business owner, we know you re busy. You don t have the time to both run your business and perfect your web presence. But we do! At Main Street Hub, we provide a full service do-it-for-you marketing solution that engages with your current and potential customers across multiple platforms to save you valuable time. Our services put you in the driver s seat, while we: Grow your fanbase: We will grow your fanbase by optimizing your social media profiles and using targeted advertising to attract customers in your area, pulling them away from your competitors. Engage and motivate your audience: We turn audience members into customers by creating original, engaging content and offers that drive traffic to your website and storefront. Protect your reputation: We will maintain your business reputation and rapport with your customers by responding to all Yelp and Google+ reviews, starting conversations and building long-term relationships. Track your results: We will monitor engagement and interaction with your business by providing a customized dashboard to track key metrics, indicating areas for improvement and opportunities for growth. WHAT YOU LL GET: a better online Reputation more Exposure more Customers 10

11 TYPICAL CUSTOM RESULTS AFTER 90 DAYS AFTER 180 DAYS Increase in monthly Yelp traffic Increase in Facebook fans Increase in Twitter followers Increase in monthly Foursquare check-ins 43% 61% 259% 330% 266% 500% 191% 244% No long-term contract. We partner with you for 90 days. After that, it s month-to-month. CLICK HERE FOR A FREE SOCIAL MEDIA ASSESSMENT Call us: us: Let s Connect: 11

12 Main Street Hub

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