How Online Reviews Can Make Or Break Your Construction Business

online reviewsBecause a construction project is no small undertaking, you can bet your would-be clients are checking out the reviews online before they even contact a construction firm. With a proactive online reputation management strategy, you can make sure your reviews work for you, not against you.

Asset or Liability: the Decision is Yours

The countless opportunities to share opinions online mean your reputation is no longer limited to word of mouth circulating in your local area. Online, anyone can say anything about you and, with a quick search, your prospective clients can find those comments. Your online reputation will develop whether you take an active role in it or not. Your approach to online reputation management is what determines how much you benefit.

Take charge of your reviews by encouraging your best clients to share their opinions and your online profiles will be filled with positive comments that outshine any less favorable ones. You’ll have no trouble making that critical good first impression on anyone searching for you online.

Keep Up With the Conversation

If you’re monitoring your reviews, you’ll have the opportunity to thank your clients who leave good reviews and offer them further services or request referrals when they’re in a buying mood. You can also ask permission to re-reprint their reviews, so you can leverage their praise in your marketing.

When a frustrated client shows up and you respond promptly, there’s a chance you can make amends and turn them into a happy, loyal patron. Even if that client ends up leaving, your response will remain online to show future prospects how seriously you take customer service and how respectfully you handle conflict.

Ignore what’s being said about you online, though, and you’ll miss valuable opportunities while leaving both your current and prospective clients with the impression you don’t particularly care what they think.

By encouraging your satisfied clients to speak up and paying attention to your reviews, you can build an online reputation that works solidly in your favor.

 

How To Manage Your Online Reputation And Why You MUST Do It

online reputation managementJust because you haven’t been actively managing your online reputation doesn’t mean you don’t have one. In fact, you might be surprised how much is being said about your construction firm online. A little more interaction will give you more control over the conversation.

Speak Up on Social Media

Social media has become the place to go to voice complaints, share success stories, and trade tips. Chances are, your clients and partners are already there talking about their experiences with your firm. By joining the conversation, you have a chance to show your appreciation, expand on the topic, and tell your side of the story.

Managing your online reputation doesn’t require you to be on every platform, but try to have an account on the three your clients use most often. Set up Google Alerts for your company’s name, the owner’s name, and other key terms so you’ll find out when someone’s talking about you.

Own Your Search Engine Results

When someone searches for your company online, you want the first results they get to be something you’ve written yourself that presents your company in exactly the way you want. The best way to accomplish that is by regularly posting valuable content. Consider developing a few in-depth “ultimate guide” blog posts on the topics your prospects are most interested in, such as “A Complete Guide to Profiting from Modular Construction.” Content like this attracts shares and links from other blogs, which boosts its position in the search engines.

Why Online Reputation Matters

Word of mouth has always been vital in the construction industry, but now the conversation has spread out across the internet. Your online reputation will develop with or without you. Neglect it and you could find the first search engine results for your firm’s name are the only bad review you’ve ever had and your competitor’s opinion on why he’s better than you. By taking an active role in your reputation, you ensure your would-be clients see you in a positive light first.

 

Referral Marketing In An Online World

online referral marketingEncouraging referrals is one of the most effective ways to create a steady stream of construction leads and this approach isn’t limited to in-person exchanges. Strategic referral marketing online can bring you more leads with less effort.

Take Your Rewards Program Online

When a satisfied client directs a lead to your website, that lead may still be collecting information and exploring their options. By the time they’re ready to do business, chances are high they’ll forget to mention who sent them and the referrer loses out, discouraging further referrals.

To prevent that situation, use software that lets you give anyone who might send you business a personal referral link to your website. This lets you track signups and downloads by referrer. Another option is to provide a personal code they can pass along that will let the lead access valuable downloads on your site.

Engage in Social Listening

Tuning in to what’s being said about your firm on social media makes it easy to spot fans who would be happy to send leads your way. With a tool such as Google Alerts, Social Mention or Hootsuite, you can quickly track down any social media mentions of your firm’s name or projects you’ve worked on. When you find someone talking positively about your work, reach out to let them know you appreciate referrals and invite them to take part in your incentive program.

Maintain Top-of-Mind Awareness

Part of successful referral marketing online is making sure your firm is the first one your former clients think of when someone they know needs construction work done. Maintaining that level of awareness takes regular contact beyond follow-up phone calls and post cards. Online content lets you keep in touch consistently yet unobtrusively.

Use your blog and newsletter to publish genuinely useful information that keeps your clients coming back. Periodically offer handy tips sheets, templates, and other resources. When you can, create detailed white papers you can pass along to former clients, and they can forward to their network.

For more tips on effective referral marketing online, contact us at Construction Monitor

 

Reputation Management: How Your Online Reputation Can Affect Your Business

reputation managementYour reputation is among your company’s most valuable assets. Whether online or in the physical world, your reputation tells potential customers what they can expect when they deal with you. It is particularly important to maintain your reputation online, where leads and potential customers can easily find information — true or false — about your company. Here are some important ways your online reputation can affect your business and why reputation management is important in the online world.

  • Customers have access to much of your history: Customers can easily find information about your company’s history online. You can control what kind of information is available on your official website and sanctioned social media sources such as Facebook or Twitter. Outside of these resources, however, your customers can find other material such as newspaper articles, assessments of your company on review sites such as Yelp, and simple mentions on personal blogs or websites. This information can give potential customers a comprehensive picture of your reputation.
  • Customers can see your customer service in action: Potential customers can see how you handle customer service issues when they occur online. For example, if someone posts a complaint on your website, it’s easy to see how long it took for your company to respond and how you resolved the issue. Customers and leads can see for themselves the speed of response, the tone you took, and what you are willing to do to correct errors and ensure customer satisfaction. This can strongly influence a buying decision in cases where customers make emotional (rather than logical) choices.
  • False information is easy to present: In the online world, it is easy for disgruntled customers, competitors or pranksters to post false or negative information about you. Online reputation management gives you the opportunity to directly address this information and correct it (or have it removed) before it can harm your company.

Construction Monitor provides the most up-to-date business management data for construction firms and affiliated companies. Contact us today for more information on reputation management and how to effectively maintain your company’s reputation, and continued success, online.