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Cary Weston Cary Weston
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The Marketing Edge - How to get more Google reviews for your professional service firm

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Online reviews have been around for a while now and while most of us know that they are important, we might struggle to articulate why.

But it's pretty simple. Good reviews help persuade potential customers that you are prepared to deliver great products or services.

In fact, a 2014 study found that 88 percent of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. That same study found that the more online reviews a business has, the more trustworthy it is deemed.

Consumers read an average of six online reviews before making a decision, so it's important to have a number of online reviews for your business.

Here are some recommendations and best practices that could help.

Be prepared

Don’t be caught unprepared should someone say “yes” to your request or even ask on their own if they can give you a review. Be prepared to share the links to your review pages quickly and efficiently. Here’s how:

  •       Find the links to the sites you want to offer for review consideration (Google Account, Yelp, Facebook, etc)
  •       List the addresses in a location that is quickly accessible to you when opportunity presents (on your website, in an email, in a text file on your computer, etc)
  •       If there are any instructions you want to share, be sure to have them listed along with the links

Start with your inner circle

Building your reviews doesn’t need to happen all at once. Start with the people you know best and that know you best. Don’t be surprised if you have to ask more people than you think to get a few reviews actually done. People get busy and may need to be reminded.

Also, be sure to:

  •       Be sincere and authentic in your outreach.
  •       Connect on a personal level with the people you’re asking. Remember to be authentic when you’re asking for their help.
  •       Remember people will want to help you more than you think.

Create a reminder to revisit your review opportunities

Be prepared to revisit this about every six months or so. Put it on your calendar and review your clients and projects at least every six months. If you have employees, review with your team as well. Remember:

  •       Don’t ask too early – let projects complete and relationships nurture before you reach out and ask
  •       Strike while the iron is hot – anytime you receive a positive email or comment, be sure to ask if they would consider posting a review.

(Cary Weston is a partner in Sutherland Weston.)

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