As we swing into the holiday season, it’s common for an overpowering sense of giving to sweep over us, whether we’re shopping for gifts or simply giving thanks for life’s blessings. It’s a great time to reflect on the things that have brought us joy, but for home care agency owners, it’s also a good time to appreciate something that brings both joy and consternation – your agency’s online reputation.
For many business owners, it can be difficult to open up and allow your company, yourself, and your employees to be scrutinized by the public; some may even try to avoid reviews altogether. But it’s important to understand how crucial having a strong reputation is for your agency, and why you should be thankful for it, even when you get less than five stars.
Consumers are turning to review sites to research local businesses in higher numbers than ever before, and those reviews make an impact. Recent surveys show that 84% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations, and 74% report that positive reviews make them trust a business more. Additionally, according to the 2016 Home Care Benchmarking Study from Home Care Pulse, reputation is one of the top five reasons why consumers choose a home care agency.
Your reputation is one of your agency’s greatest assets, so it’s important not to hide from it, but be thankful for it and encourage happy clients to contribute. Make sure you’re doing the following things to help build a solid reputation for your agency:
- Set up Profiles on Review Sites for Your Agency: Clients can’t review your business if they can’t find it, so the first step is to make sure you have profiles set up for your company on the top online review sites, like Google+, Yahoo, Yelp, Facebook, etc., as well as industry-specific review sites like Caring.com.
- Ask for Reviews: It’s easy to complain that you aren’t getting reviews, but are you asking? According to BrightLocal’s 2016 consumer survey, seven out of ten consumers will leave a review for a business if they’re asked to. Your clients are thankful for the services you provide, and if you’ve given them great service, they’ll be happy to give you a glowing review in return.
- Make It Easy to Leave Reviews: The easier you can make it to leave reviews, the more likely you are to get them. Put direct links to your review profiles in multiple places, like your email signature, newsletter, and on your website.
- Give RISE to More Positive Client Reviews: RISE (Reputation Improved – SEO Enhanced) is corecubed’s reputation management system that helps busy home care providers generate more positive client feedback and turn it into online reviews that improve an agency’s reputation and enhance SEO for its website. With our RISE system, clients, family members of clients, agency employees, referral sources, etc. receive emails asking them for feedback. Those who give positive feedback are then asked to review your agency on the online review sites of your choice, and the system makes it easy for them to do so. When someone leaves negative feedback, instead of being asked to leave an online review, the person is routed to a page asking for suggestions on how your agency can make improvements, allowing their concerns to be heard and giving you an opportunity to respond directly to them and improve your service. Win-win.
- Above All, Show Your Thanks: Any form of client appreciation, even a simple thank you, is often enough to brighten someone’s day and give them a warm fuzzy feeling about your agency. Consider ways that you can give thanks for your clients and referrals to show how grateful you are for their business, including: giving them a shout out on social media, offering a coupon for free or discounted services, sending out a hand-written card and including a gift card to a local coffee shop, etc. Your gratitude will not only warm hearts, it will make them want to tell the world about your services.
Reputation is a top home care marketing consideration for agencies today. Find out how corecubed’s award-winning home care marketing team can help you give thanks and improve your agency’s reputation along the way. Contact us today to learn more about our wide range of home care marketing and sales services!