There is a pretty fantastic marketing coach named Boyd Petersen. He has written a thing or two that would help any vacation rental company succeed at marketing. Recently he wrote an outstanding article about grabbing the attention of potential customers through online reviews.
Read his post includes the follow 5 steps to a great online review plan. Read his full post HERE.
The Great Online Review Plan
1. Start with an outstanding customer service program. Everyone in your business needs to be a part of this. Make sure that every customer leaves (in person, on the phone or over the internet) feeling like they got better service than they could get anywhere else. This is a culture that needs to be developed within the company. One person that isn’t all about taking care of the customer will ruin the experience for the customer.
2. Ask as they leave – Make sure that the last person to talk to them as they leave, asks about their visit. Ask open-ended questions that bring out what their experience was like. A survey can help you determine how great their experience was.
3. Ask for a great review – When their experience is positive, ask them for a great review. Let them know that you will send them an email in the next couple of days to get the review handled. If you get it right then, that’s great too. That is a testimonial and should be used on your website as well. It won’t be able to be used on the review sites unless they enter it there themselves.
4a. The email – Be sure to have a program and procedures in place that gets that email sent out to them within two work days of when they were working with you. Make sure that it asks them for a great review to help others know how well you helped them. The email should have two buttons that allows them to choose “I have a great review” and “They didn’t do so well.” The first button, see 4b. The second button, see 4c
4b. Ask again – Send them to one of the review sites that they use – Google +, Yelp, Facebook or whichever that would be best for your industry. (Restaurants love Urban Spoon and travel-related companies use TripAdvisor.)
4c. If not great, have a plan on how to handle it – Have it so that if they aren’t satisfied they can send a message back to you, rather than to the review sites directly. Now you can help resolve the issue before it goes online.
5. Send them a “Thank You” email when they have reviewed you.