Customer Created Content It can Make or Break Your Business

Online content generated by your customers is powerful enough to make or break your business.

Unfavorable comments, videos, and live streams can go viral in an instant. If you’re not listening carefully and engaging with customers proactively, you’re running a risk of putting your business into a “reputation crisis”.

In this article, we’ll learn how regular monitoring of what consumers write about your brand online can be a very powerful lead generation tool. It can open the flood gates and have your business loaded with potential clients excited to do business with you based on your stellar online reputation.

Why Does Customer Feedback Even Matter?

If we all lived in a perfect world, ads and organic traffic would convert 100% of potential customer into long term happy paying clients. Unfortunately we all live in the real world so that’s not how things work. Marketing alone is insufficient. If a customer is interested in your product and/or services, they’ll skim at least 8-10 online reviews on average before they feel warm and fuzzy enough to trust your brand.

According to the Local Customer Evaluation Study, 91% of millennials rely on reviews as much as individual recommendations. A favorable track record helps clients trust your brand, transforms Google searchers into leads, and boosts local search rankings.

Any specific niche that can be browsed and found online will be impacted by good or bad ratings and reviews. Some niches such as any business or service where someone is visiting your home or business to do a specific job. In these niches many times it comes down to rating and reviews. If two competing companies show up in top positions in the search results what is always the tie breaker? It is reviews and searching Google to see if there is any negative content that comes up? What occurs when your service gets a poor online review? You instantly start losing your potential customers and ultimately revenue.

Typically, a single negative review can cost you 1 out of every 5 new potential customers or 20%. The number rises to 50% after three negatives, while four or more unfavorable customer ratings about your brand can cost up to 70% of potential new customers. At that point fixing your online reputation might be what keeps your doors open.

92% of online searchers will not even consider doing business with companies with less than 4 out of five stars. Browsing the very first page of your Google search engine results will be enough for them to build their solid impression of your service. If they find unfavorable posts or negative feedback, they’ll likely go with a competitor who has a higher star rating.

How to save your company from the reputational crisis? Firstly, you need to understand what affect your online ranking has on your earnings. According to the Harvard Business School study, simply a one-star enhancement in Yelp rating can increase revenue from 5 to 9%.

The distinction between a three-star and five stars can rise to 18%. This means if you run a company with $1 million dollars in yearly sales, you need to be ready to lose as much as $200,000 Dollars each year since you did not think reviews were very important.

Your customers are all online every single day. They want to share their experiences good and bad. However it is a well known fact that people are way more motivated to share their negative experiences with a business over the positive ones. As the old saying goes do a great job for someone and they might tell one person. Do a poor job and they will immediately tell 20 people. With social media and so many regional and ratings websites it is easier now than ever before for people to share. Even if you spend a more significant part of your marketing budget on ads and online promos if a potential customer sees poor comments and reviews regarding your business then effectively you have paid for ads to send new business to your competition.

Credibility Crisis on the Horizon

Think reputational crisis can’t occur to your business? Every business is vulnerable to catastrophe, whether it’s a local brand or a global organization chain. The concern is not if it takes place, but how prepared you are when it does. You certainly don’t want to be caught with your digital pants down to negative content or reviews regarding your brand.

Last year, a local Indian restaurant was completely closed after getting a food hygiene ranking of ‘one’ with significant improvements needed from city health officials. The unnamed restaurant had blended ratings with 3.4 stars on Google, and 3.5 stars on TripAdvisor. This business failed to be proactive to fix their rating and restore their online reputation the consequences were going out of business completely. Now I am not saying that every business that has less than a 4 star rating will go under but just showing that it can and does happen.

Even the tiniest issue can snowball into a review crisis if you do nothing about it. The faster you spot risks by monitoring your business’ online reputation, the much better possibility you can prevent any possible disasters.

Leaving reviews on platforms like Google, Facebook, Trust Pilot, TripAdvisor and Yelp are popular among users up until now. But snapping photos and sharing them on social media is a key part of the customer experience for many individuals. Every day millions of users share their experiences through posts and stories on social networks platforms. Monitoring them is a best opportunity for business to get the current customers’ insights.

What’s Next: Fixing Bad Reviews

As soon as you discover negative and/or fake reviews you need to have a plan focused on recovering your business image. Negativity often takes a business by surprise, but preparing a crisis management strategy ahead of time can help you avoid a big storm.

Here are five useful actions to safeguard your service from the reputational damage:

  1. Screen your business and do searches for your business and business name regularly online. Also pay attention to social media about your business as well as competitors. This helps you recognize what people are saying about your business. You also can learn what things are important to them vs. what is not. Doing a quick check a few times each week will help you discover what your clients believe and keep an eye on reviews.
  2. Compute reputational risk. Do you understand just how much revenue you’re losing from any negative content? Well, it’s quite simple to measure the impact of negative Google search results page and poor reviews based upon Forbes solutions. As pointed out above, unfavorable reviews can seriously harm your business name but also reduces your earnings. Here is the formula you can use to approximate your quantity of lost revenue: % Lost Revenue = (5 − Star score) × 0.07. If you have a 3-star score, you’re two stars far from 5. Multiple 2 × 0.07 = 0.14. That’s 140 % of lost income. If your total profits for 2021 equals $500.000, you need to do: 0.14 × 500.000 =$70,000 in lost revenue.
  3. React to unfavorable evaluations like an expert. When you handle a dissatisfied consumer who made a complaint about your company always thank your visitor for their feedback. They are making you aware of a problem that you can fix to make your business better. Next apologize and ask to continue a discussion so you can use it as an opportunity to fix the problem. Finding a quick and reliable solution to consumers’ issues will keep them loyal. A rude reaction to a genuine complaint can cause more damage to your reputation than the initial criticism. Sometimes the customer who was unhappy can be turned into a happy 5 star customer who then tells everyone how you fixed their problem.
  4. Prevent bad reviews before they appear online. Constantly listen to your customers and encourage them to share any feedback with you regardless of it is negative or positive. This is crucial prior to them posting any negative feedback online. It’s way more affordable to a business ask forgiveness and provide a refund right away than put this scenario online for the whole world to find and read over and over.
  5. Motivate customers to leave reviews. According to a recent restaurant marketing survey, 68% of consumers said they are willing to complete a review form if they are asked. So why not welcome all your happy clients to share their feedback? Use signage, put it on your receipts or even offer some incentives to complete the reviews. Always be sure to thank any customer that does take the time to fill out a review as they are helping you to stay in business as well as putting you ahead of your competition.

It takes a lot of time to build a successful business both on and offline. Building up a very strong online reputation for your business is no different. Just keep in mind that even a 1/2 star drop in your online ratings can send customers to your competitors. Ensure a good rating for your business by checking reviews and discussions of your business online to avoid any possible threats.

Although a business’ reputation is delicate, there is no problem you can’t resolve with appropriate tools and a detailed reputation management strategy. If you need help repairing your online reputation call or visit the experts at Erase My Trax