5 Tips For Earning Better Reviews
Would you do a job without getting paid? Leaving a service call without securing a review is the same as walking away without money.
More than ever, reviews are the lifeblood of commerce, and your customers know that.
“People understand the power of reviews now,” says Mark Sherwin, President and Co-Founder of LeadsNearby. “They probably looked at one before they decided to call you!”
Here are 5 tips that will help you make sure that you get every review that you can.
1.) Earn Reviews From The Very First Moment Of The Relationship.
Answering the phone with “Hey - whaddya need?” is not the start of an experience that will end in a glowing review.
“If you want to earn good reviews, it has to start the second that phone begins to ring,” explains Mark. “You have to set that expectation immediately.”
To make sure the relationship starts out right, make sure:
- A human picks up the call.
- The call is answered within a few rings.
- The person answering is pleasant and sets the expectation for excellence ahead.
“Thank you for calling today. How can I provide you with 5-star service?”
The excellence needs to continue throughout your interactions with a client. It can’t start when the technician shows up at your customer’s door - or worse, when the review request email goes out.
“Earning that review has to be part of every interaction you have. It comes up when you set the appointment. It comes up when the tech introduces him or herself. If you do that properly, it’s much easier when you finally ask for the review.”
Mark is also quick to point out that it is the human connection that will really make or break the request.
“People aren’t always motivated to review a business, but they will give feedback to the friendly service tech that’s there,” Mark says. You’ll have more success framing the review request from one person to another than you would asking someone to rate your company.
“Do you mind doing ME a favor? I'm going to send you a survey of MY services today. If you can provide some feedback for my boss… that my family will see… etc. it would help ME out.”
Tovah Coats, Client Success Manager at LeadsNearby, adds that reciprocity helps customers feel inclined to participate in the review process. “If we did a good job for you, will you give us a review?”
2.) Don’t Leave The Wording To Chance.
Gone are the days when you can just get by on stars.
Search engines are using artificial intelligence to scour every review that gets posted online. If the review does not provide useful information, it can get taken down. That’s why it’s more important than ever to make sure you are using the words that you want your customer to use in their review.
“At the end of the job, when your tech is walking a customer through the work that they did, identify things by name,” says Tovah. “Using the words that you want them to use makes it easier for the customer to write an impactful review.”
For example: “You can see here, we installed a new smart garage door opener. You can control the smart garage door opener over from the app on your phone…”
Now, we’re not telling you to coach them through writing the review. Just remember that explaining the great work that you did using the best keywords for that job accomplishes two valuable things. First, it increases your level of service. Secondly, it helps keep those keywords at the top of your customer’s mind. Both things will help your review tremendously.
3.) Circle Back To Make Sure The Customer Completes The Review.
You need to have reviews before you can use all of the marketing tools at your disposal.
“Reviews used to be social proof, but now they're literal triggers for other Google properties,” Tovah says. “If you're earning reviews, Google takes that as a signal that you're responsive and you provide good service. You have to show that before you can use things like Local Service ads.”
Therefore, you cannot put too much effort into getting customers to leave you a review.
You may need to send a reminder to a customer for them to leave you a review. With Nearby Now, you can see who has or has not responded to your review request. If they have not left a review yet, a call or a card is a great way to go.
“This is step one of a lifetime relationship,” Tovah says. “You can not overstate the importance of getting that feedback.”
4.) You Can Still Earn A Valuable Review Even If The Job Goes Sideways.
Sometimes it’s not your day.
You open a wall and find unexpected problems. The customer had a fight with their kid right before you walked in the door. Your tool scratched the new toilet bowl.
Once the tech realizes there is not going to be a positive end to the visit, they have to own it and provide a solution. The best way to do that is to offer to have a supervisor do a follow-up. Mark says this can be something as simple as “We want you to be one hundred percent satisfied with our company, so I’m going to have my manager give you a call.”
Saving this relationship is time sensitive! It can not be something that happens ‘when you get around to it.’
If you call someone in a timely manner and hear them out, that goes a long way toward turning a bad experience into a good one. Then, once the supervisor is able to get the relationship back on steady footing, they encourage an honest review.
Having a solid team, one where techs feel free to ask for help, will get you a meaningful review even in a tough situation.
5.) Consistency Is Key!
Everyone on your team has different strengths and weaknesses - especially when it comes to customer service. Tovah says that a script can help to level the playing field among your techs.
“Have something in the truck or the clipboard. Go over the script in meetings. If someone is more technically minded than socially adept, a simple formula will make customer interactions more natural for them.”
Speaking of meetings, they are a great place for consistency. Encourage your people by reading recent reviews at every meeting. This reinforces that their work getting client feedback is important.
Mark says that one more way that consistency matters is that nobody is above the rules.
“One of our clients told us about a killer tech they had that just would not buy into the review system. Finally, the owner had to threaten a write-up if the tech did not start asking for reviews. The tech begrudgingly asked on their next job and got a glowing review! He came back to the office, printed it out, and showed it to everybody. It turns out that he loved the affirmation! He went on to be their highest reviewed tech.”
Every person you know has looked at a review before deciding on a purchase. I bet you’ve looked at a star rating for a product or service just this week!
The customers that you want to reach are no different. Before they get into business with you, they want to know they can trust you and that they'll be satisfied when you’re finished with the work.
Every review that you earn will tell people this and more.
As Tovah says, “A review is a reflection of a customer's happiness.” If you have treated them well along the way, they will be happy to share that information with the world.
What information can LeadsNearby share with you? Call us today at 919-758-8420 to set up a free, 25-minute consultation. Learn how our team can help grow your home service business.