People Are Talking About You: Reviews Are a Necessary Evil Chris Lonergan January 4, 2019 Share: There are generally two types of contractors when it comes to talking about online reviews. "I don't feel comfortable asking for reviews... I hate Yelp, so all online reviews are useless Regardless of your team affiliation, it's time to take a step back and look at the big picture. It doesn't matter what you think about reviews. It matters what your customers think about reviews. And, generally speaking, your potential customers care about reviews. So, unless you want to ignore that gigantic and continually growing segment of the population that no longer simply trusts the largest Yellow Pages ad – it is time to be proactive about your reviews. Let's go into some more detail about what that means and how to conquer your review acquisition fears. Getting More Reviews is Not "If You Build It, They Will Come" Simply claiming your Google My Business listing isn't enough. While you may get a random review from time to time, that is not a valuable review management plan. If you want to improve your review count, you've got to participate. There is Absolutely No Reason to Feel Uncomfortable Asking for the Review if You Do Good Work We've heard this from multiple contractors over the years. Not everyone is a salesperson, but asking for the review doesn't require extreme persuasion skills by any means. You've already closed the sale. You've already providing superior quality service. You've already talked the talk and walked the walk. Now, you're just having a conversation about customer satisfaction – and asking the client to share their satisfaction publicly. It isn't prideful or vain to ask for the review – it is simply good business. It allows you to understand who on your team are your strongest players, to learn any potential weaknesses in your processes, and how you can improve your business. Why wouldn't you want to do that? The People That Are Going to Leave Negative Reviews Are Going to Do It Anyways Another concern we usually hear is "If I make it easy for someone to leave me a review, then it makes it easier for them to leave me a bad review!" The unfortunate truth is that people who are upset by your service are already more likely to leave you a review and people who want to leave you a negative review will go out of their way to do so. But, that doesn't mean you should abandon the hope of ever getting a positive review. Negative reviews on the web are an eventuality. In fact, we consider them a necessity. But you shouldn't let the fear of getting a negative review put you off of building your credibility with positive reviews. People Are More Willing to Leave Reviews if They Think It Will Help Someone Else Research published in the Harvard Business Review found that "Simply reminding individuals of the pro-social benefits they provide by sharing opinions online can have a powerful impact on their willingness to leave online reviews and improve the usefulness of today's ubiquitous online review platforms." Monitoring Your Reviews Ensures You Are Part of the Conversation There will be times where people, positively or negatively, may leave reviews without any influence from you. But if you're not out there, actively participating in the process, it means you're not part of the conversation. That means you'll miss out on opportunities to thank those who left positive reviews or possible address and convert negative reviewers. About Chris Lonergan Chris Lonergan is the President of Footbridge Media. With a background in web design, print design, and online marketing, Chris is focused on providing quality marketing and business solutions in the construction and service industries - helping small business owners to more efficiently manage their company and grow their operations. Recent Articles The Importance of Reputation Management for Contractor Businesses What Makes Your Business Unique - Discovering & Defining Your USP 7 Proven & Effective Ways to Improve Online Presence for Your Contractor Business 5 Tips for Positive Brand Building for Contractors Successful Ways to Earn Repeat and Referral Business Is Your Contractor Marketing Plan Up-to-Date?