Online reviews are on the rise. According to this year’s Direct Booking Summit in Dallas, TX, 2017 saw a total review volume increase of 27.2%, with platforms such as Google and Booking.com seeing the biggest increases overall. With online reviews playing a big role in brand loyalty, reputation, and the early stages of the trip planning process, online reviews will only continue to increase.
Managing your online reviews can be time-consuming, so it might be tempting to rush out and find a third-party management company to manage your reviews for you. But this is not the best route to take. Read here for several reasons why you should keep your online review management system in-house.
It is difficult to train an agency on your overall strategy, process, and execution. Unless you trust the agency 100%, you might find you are spending just as much time monitoring their work for accuracy as you would have managing the reviews yourself.
Hiring a third party to help manage and respond to your online reviews opens the door for your brand’s voice to be misrepresented. Only you and your staff know and understand how to vocalize the tone of your brand in the right way.
Lack of personalization
Each guest experience is unique. One of the biggest mistakes you can make when responding to guest reviews is responding with cookie-cutter answers. Guests want to feel like they are understood and appreciated, particularly if they had a negative experience. So, you need to treat your responses and how you handle their reviews as such. A third-party service will not know the situation the guest is complaining about or praising. Only you and your staff will know that and can respond to that in a meaningful way.
What you should do…
Taking the time to manage your online reviews can be a lot of work, but avoid the above problems by managing your online reviews in-house and start implementing these tactics into your daily routine:
- Start using FREE review trackers such as Google Alerts, Twitter Search, or Social Mention.
- Designate one person on your staff to handle reviews. Choose someone with a positive customer service attitude, friendly writing style, and the authority to resolve complaints or incentivize as a result of a positive review.
- Ensure you are responding to negative AND positive reviews.
- Create a general guideline for responses to common reviews received.
- Reinforce positive reviews and stray away from cookie-cutter responses, particularly to negative reviews.
If you would like further information on best practices and overall insight into your online reputation, please reach out to our marketing team here at RezStream. Our experts are dedicated to helping clients manage every aspect of their online presence, including online reputation. Contact email@example.com to see how we can arm you with the best tools to manage your online reviews and reputation.