You’re heading out to dinner with your sweetie, and want to find the perfect restaurant for a romantic evening. Where do you turn? If you’re like 90% of consumers, you’re going to hop online and check out online reviews, whether on Yelp, Google, or otherwise.
Check out Michael Krisa’s video below, for additional tips and why it’s important to leave online reviews of your own:
Need more reasons to get on board with online reviews? Check out these statistics.
- 88% Of Consumers Trust Online Reviews As Much As Personal Recommendations
- 72% Of Consumers Say That Positive Reviews Make Them Trust A Local Business More
- 92% of users will use a local business if it has at least a 4-star listing
- 72% of consumers will take action only after reading a positive review
Isn’t the first one surprising? What does that mean for you as a realtor?
Whether we like it or not, online consumer reviews have an impact on your business. Sites like Realtor.com, RealSatisfied, Zillow, and Yelp allow for consumer reviews, and your potential clients are likely to check you out online.
How do you help make sure those reviews work in your favor?
We have a 5-Part Plan to make sure you get the most from your reviews, and we’ll share it with you:
Tell the client what to expect when they start working with you. Tell them beforehand that you’re going to ask for a review and possibly referral at the end.
By clearly setting the expectations for what they can expect from you, when you ask for a review at the end, they have a benchmark.
Give the client an easy way to review you and pick ONE site. Then, email them, with specific instructions (if you use an automated email system, make it one of your standard “after-transaction” emails).
Help them understand review sites when it comes time. While consumers read reviews, don’t assume that everyone knows how to give them.
Ask! Just ask… over… and over… and over again. It normally requires 7-8 emails to get someone to respond. It’s not that you’re bugging them – in fact, most people say that they were just “busy” and meant to do it.
Beyond that, if someone compliments you, make sure to ask them to leave a review on another site.
Last, and probably the most important, when you do get a review make sure to thank your client, and recognize them in your monthly newsletter or on social media. When others see this, they’ll be more likely to follow your star client’s example. Plus, everyone likes praise.
After you’ve gotten a great review, don’t be shy – this is a good time to remind clients that your business is based on referrals. Someone who is happy with your services will also be happy to share your name with people they know who may be looking to buy or sell a home.
Monitor Your Online Reviews
First, make sure you set up profiles on multiple sites that pertain to your business. Yelp, Angie’s List, Google Local, LinkedIn.
Now that you’re set up, how do you find reviews about you? If you have a Google account, it’s one of the easiest ways to receive an alert when something about you is posted online: https://www.google.com/alerts
Make it a point to respond to EVERY review out there about you, especially any that are negative. Handling those in a professional, positive way can mean that potential clients may overlook a negative review.
Promote Your Reviews
As we’ve seen, reviews can be very powerful, and promoting the ones you get is critical to your marketing strategy. Add links to your review profiles on emails, your website, etc. and make it easy for your clients. After a transaction, send an email asking for an online review, or a referral. If you’re working with a business, give them a referral.
One of the best ways to get a referral is to give one. It’s the “rule of reciprocity,” if you give someone something of value they are going to want to do the same.
BE The Expectation
Don’t forget, the cornerstone of all of this is that you need to BE a stellar agent. Stand out from the pack by being great at your job and delivering on the expectations you shared in your preview.
Put in the time and effort with each client, and you’ll be rewarded with reviews, referrals, and continued business. Set up a business based on amazing service, and you’ll never be waiting holding your breath in the hopes that you’ll be profitable next month…