HVAC Success- Online Reviews
Are your customers writing reviews online about your company? Are these reviews helping or hurting your business?
In today’s world information travels so fast, the good the bad and the ugly. Most customers perform some sort of online search on your company, products or service prior to ever picking up the phone and scheduling an appointment. That being said, you need to know what the internet has to say about your company if you want to ensure HVAC Success, Growth and Profitability.
When is the last time you typed your company name into a search engine followed be the word “reviews”? Many business owners and managers never have done this. As part of my homework after day 1 of every class I teach, I Google every company in attendance and read every review that shows up. The next morning I’ll always ask the class how many review sites is your company listed on? How many reviews their company has on the World Wide Web? Have you read all of them? What do they say? How current are they? Are the reviews an accurate description of your company?
Whether you like what you see or not, it rally doesn’t matter. This is what potential customers could be seeing before they ever pick up the phone to invite you into their home. If you knew nothing about your company and only had the reviews you found online as your sole way to gage the quality of your business, would you call?
If your company is not listed on yelp.com, kudzu.com, google+, BBB, Angie’s List, Facebook, twitter, etc…take the time to set up a company page for your services. Most review sites are free; however some may require a small investment to participate. Services such as Nearby Now and Review Buzz are great online reputation management systems that make it easy for both you and your clients to leave comments and access reviews, for a minimal fee.
If you choose to go after online reviews yourself and not invest a reputation management system, know that you can be just as effective, it will just require a significant investment of your time. Like anything else, you should have a clearly defined plan, have identified all your action steps, have an accurate means to measure your success, and properly communicated everyone’s roles and responsibilities prior to pulling the trigger. I have found rewards/spiffs to be the most powerful way to drive reviews very quickly.
Once you have a company page up for all the major review sites start focusing on earning consistent 5 star reviews. This starts with simply letting everyone know what your goals and expectations are and how asking every customer we meet to write us a review will only have positive impacts on the business. I have found that something so simple has proven to be challenging for most employees. They just don’t ask every customer on a consistent basis unless their review performance and success rates are being measured, monitored and openly discussed in company meetings. For some reason unless you make reviews a big deal in your company and everyone sees how committed the boss/owner is to these reviews, the results will be inconsistent and marginal at best.
When completing any service employees should confirm that they have exceeded all of the customers expectations, ask every customer to “help ya out” or “do you a favor”. Then just provide them with the information they need to complete an on-line review for you that mentions you by name. A lot of companies have printed up little cards that tell their customers how to leave an on-line review for them in 3 simple steps.
If you are asking every customer for their help, if you are instructing them as to how easy it is to do, and you are exceeding their expectations, well then there just isn’t any way you can’t have success creating an arsenal of personalized testimonials for future potential clients to read prior to picking up the phone and calling you.
In addition to the world knowing how awesome your company is, on-line reviews will help you in organic internet rankings, building trust with potential customers, shows why someone should invest a little more in you than one of your competitors, and provides you and your team with the feedback you need to continue to prosper and grow.
The only thing more powerful than 5 star online reviews are video testimonials from your customers, but we’ll save that message for another week.
Many times HVAC Success is really defined with how well we do all the little things in our business and what we as leaders truly find as a key performance indicator. When you make your customers happiness a priority and when you ensure that you are not just meeting, but exceeding all their expectations….your guaranteed HVAC Success and Loyal Customers!