It is common knowledge that good customer reviews are good for business, but reputation management is an art unto itself.
Reputation Management in 2021 is a live, dynamic and omni-channel discipline. In a world that is fully connected and personalized through social media, careful maintenance of the appropriate channels can lead to great business outcomes and drive real trust from consumers. In Tours and Attractions, where customers are generally looking for a fun and safe family outing, trust is paramount to success.
Calling it your “online reputation” really is redundant. Your online reputation simply is your reputation. In the digital era, nothing is protecting you from criticism anymore. — Neil Patel
Consider the following points from a recent TripAdvisor survey:
- 79% of travelers said personalized responses from owners make reviews more useful, highlighting the importance of management responses.
- 89% of travelers said a thoughtful response to a negative review improved their impression of a business, showing the effectiveness of owners responding to all types of reviews.
- 84% of travellers said polite and respectful response from business owners is important to them when reading reviews, and as a result, they plan a better trip.
Here are our top tips to maximize your business’s reputation:
Monitor all outlets where your customers may be speaking about you.
The key places to look will be your Google reviews, your Facebook page and any other Third-Party sites or Forums that you belong to. In a business driving a high volume of customers daily, it is important to have an employee with strong writing ability block time to scan and respond to comments regularly.
TIP: For a business with large visibility – set a Google Alert to track your business name. This way you will be fully aware of online discussions about your business that have scaled beyond a single review.
Maintain a consistent voice.
Social media is a tremendous tool to fully express yourself as a business. The opportunity goes beyond repeating your mission and vision – you can truly create a personality for your brand to attract like-minded customers. Some companies strive to convey calm competence in dealing with complex issues, some aim to provide laughs and fun to guests of all types.
There are many examples of companies successfully employing different brand identities through social media, but you cannot be all things to all people. Take the time to reverse engineer how you will speak based on who you would like to speak to in order to find and attract your most high value audience.
TIP: During the inevitable trial and error of developing your brand voice, analytics found on your Tours and Attractions software dashboard can help your team identify what messages are driving engagement and visitors.
Address negativity head on.
It has been reported that 97% of consumers who read business reviews also read the business’s responses to those reviews. Shift your mindset of a negative review from a problem to an opportunity to show how adept you are at rectifying customer complaints. In many cases, a speedy acknowledgement of the problem, an apology and an appropriate offer to reimburse the client for their troubles can be even more effective than yet another good review.
When it comes to online reviews the unfortunate truth is that praise is generally silent while criticism is loud. Employing best practices in reputation management can allow you to use this to your advantage.
At the end of the day – you can’t please everyone. No business today is completely shielded from unwarranted negative feedback, and no team is immune to honest mistakes. It is always better to take the high road - the above principles can serve as guideposts to building a culture of accountability in your customer experience efforts.