This is the first in a short series that will show examples of where businesses go wrong with their marketing efforts and what they should do about it.
The image above (you can click on the image to see a larger version) shows what Google returns when I search for a dentist. What I see is an enormous missed opportunity. Now before we go any further, I want to say that I am making my own personal opinions on the perception of what is displayed. I am in no way making any opinion on the quality of the provider being used in this example (we live in a very litigious world).
Anyway, here is a dental practice that has done so much right but will be unable to reach their full potential. Why? because many customers are unhappy and Google clearly shows it to the world.
What is right:
- They have the coveted #1 position in the “7 pack.”
- They have an OK looking website.
- They have claimed their Google local business page and linked their website to it.
BUT here is where they go wrong:
- Google shows that they have a 2 star rating out of 5.
If you are searching for a dentist, are you going to give the practice with 2 stars a try, or are you going to see what some of the others offer? Chances are you are going to see what your options are and avoid this particular practice.
The other thing you notice is that the negative reviews did not happen overnight. There are reviews that are 4 years old, 2 years old, and a few months old. At some point the business should have taken note of what customers are saying and made some changes to their business to put more focus on the customers.
The lifetime value of a customer, especially to a dentist, is very high. I am sure that this dentist is losing out on literally hundreds of thousands of dollars in revenue over the course of several years due to the impression that their online listing gives to potential customers.
How to fix this problem:
I normally will not work with a company for reputation management unless I am convinced that the problems are fixed. I won’t help cover up problems that will only end up hurting more consumers. But if I were helping this business, I would be focusing on getting more reviews from happy customers. That way, the average comes up and you would look seriously at a company with, for example, 4 stars. Also, more reviews would push the negative reviews down so that they aren’t as prominent. Finally, more positive reviews that are recent show web searchers that the problems are in the past.
Next, I would have the owner respond personally to every single comment to show that they have heard what the customer’s concerns are and that they care.
There is much more to reputation management, including very clever ways to minimize the number of negative reviews that actually get posted online, but this should get you started.
Given the lifetime value of a customer, it is critical that you check your reviews consistently. You have to know and honestly care about what your customers are saying about you!
If you would like to know more about reputation management and how we can help, give us a call. We would love to hear from you.