Online Reviews are a Key Strategy to Your Marketing Plan

Posted by Chuck Bankoff On February - 27 - 2014

Reputation ManagementPublishers Note: Gregg Towsley is a fellow Digital Marketer who specializes in helping plumbing/HVAC companies get more local exposure on the Internet and grow their business. If there is one thing we agree on, it’s the absolute necessity for local businesses…in any industry to proactively manage reputation through positive customer reviews.


By: Greg Towsley


 

Online reviews play an important role in your ability to your grow plumbing/HVAC business, not just with word of mouth marketing, but online reviews also have a stake in the success of your online marketing. If you aren’t soliciting your customers for online reviews then you could be missing out on some great marketing opportunities.

 

In the past, word of mouth marketing was a very powerful plumbing marketing tool, and it still is today. However with the onset of the internet, word of mouth marketing has changed over the years. While the traditional form of word of mouth marketing is still alive and well, the power of online reviews supersedes the later. With online plumbing marketing trends changing ever so rapidly it is important to stay on top of the trends. Google algorithms are constantly changing and adapting to combat some of the earlier strategies of SEO and link-building, in an effort to promote relevant content for search results. In addition, with the onset of more and more mobile searches, online reviews prove to be more relevant in some search results.

 

Here’s why you should be soliciting online reviews
Online reviews for a plumbing/HVAC company allow owners to reach out to customers. We hope that all of your customers have wonderful things to say about your plumbing company, however on occasion there will be a disgruntled customer. Online reviews allow company owners to correct a bad business experience. By taking a negative situation and correcting it, it creates a positive customer experience. This is pure customer service, and an important part of owning a plumbing company. It allows plumbing companies to find out what their customers are looking for to better serve them.

 

Online reviews are also great to create new business. Like we stated before this is the new word of mouth marketing, and new customers are more likely to hire a professional plumber that has great reviews vs. one who has bad reviews with no resolution or one who has no reviews at all. Customers listen to what other customers have to say more than any other source.

 

Reviews help improve search ranking. The more reviews a plumbing business has the more relevant to search engines your plumbing company will be. Google favors online reviews because they are organic. With Google Local reviews are heavily weighted, and many mobile users pull up search results from platforms such as these because they are more compatible with mobile use. In this sense you are allowing your customers to do the plumbing marketing for you. In addition many reviews will contain keywords that bring in new customers.

 

All in all, online reviews are great for plumbing/HVAC marketing and a good strategy to grow a plumbing/HVAC business. If you are short on reviews first make sure you have claimed your local directories on Google, Bing, YahooLocal, and Yelp! Then simply ask your customers to review your plumbing business, you can even send a follow up email after service has be completed or reach out to them on social media. This is a great way to engage with your customers and do some free marketing.

 

Here are 4 tips to get more online reviews for your business.

  1. Organic method—making sure your business is listed on as many third-party sites as possible, so that customers can find you if they feel like writing reviews spontaneously.
  2. Phone call—kinda old-fashioned, but highly effective.
  3. Link to clickable images on your site—something that customers who return to your site can click on to write you reviews.
  4. Single-page handouts—a sheet of instructions you can simply hand to customers, which walks them through how to post a review.

Gregg Towsley is the founder of Grow Plumbing “All Things Plumbing Marketing” and blogs regularly at GrowPlumbing.com.

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About Chuck Bankoff

Chuck Bankoff has been a Digital Marketing strategist since 1999 and is an International speaker, author and trainer to WSI Internet Consultants on 5 continents. Chuck manages a team of website development and web presence optimization specialists from the Kreative Webworks office in Capistrano Beach, CA. Join him on Google+

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