Think your online reviews don’t matter? Think again. Statistics show about 97 percent of all buyers search online for local businesses, and 85 percent of those buyers consider online reviews as important as a personal recommendation. What’s more, positive reviews have a huge impact on how trustworthy your business appears — about three-quarters of all buyers say positive reviews help them trust a business more, even before they make that all-important purchasing decision.Do we want to source these stats? Do we want to source these stats?
With data like that, it’s pretty clear that if your insurance business isn’t attracting its fair share of reviews — and positive ones at that — it’s also not attracting all the clients and profits it could be (and should be).
Of course, just knowing the importance of online reviews doesn’t do much to help you get them. For that, you need a strategy — and you need to be willing to implement that strategy over and over again. If you’re not sure how to start generating online reviews, these tips can help.
6 Tips for More Reviews
As a successful insurance agent or broker, you need to be a good marketer. And that means you have to know how to “talk up” your business and how and when to ask for reviews.
Remember: People like giving good feedback when they receive truly good (or better yet, exceptional) service. So don’t be shy about asking for reviews, but don’t be too aggressive either.
Here are six tips to help you get those reviews rolling in.
1. ASK DIRECTLY
Perhaps the most obvious time to ask for a review is when you’re writing a new policy for a client or updating an existing one. Not only are you face-to-face (or on the phone) with the client, which makes it really easy to ask, but if you’ve given good service, your client is in a feel-good kinda mood — the best kind of mood for leaving a review! Make it a practice to have the link ready to send to their email (or text it) so they can leave a review right away, while the memory of the positive encounter is fresh in their mind.
2. EMBED A LINK
Make it a practice to embed a link in your email signature that leads directly to your review page or site, and have a prominent link on all the pertinent pages of your website as well. Make your website link catchy and visible, but don’t make it overwhelming. Embedded links make it as easy as possible for clients to leave reviews, which means they’re more likely to do it.
3. SEND FOLLOW-UP EMAILS
Any time you connect with a client — in person, on the phone or on the computer — use that as an opportunity to reach out via email to thank the client for the opportunity to serve them and to ask for a few moments of their time to leave a review. Again, embed the link so all they have to do is click and type. You can send the email right away, but it’s often better to wait a day or two to follow up and see if they have any additional questions rather than hounding them right after your interaction.
4. USE SIGNAGE IN YOUR OFFICE
Head to the dollar store or discount retailer and grab a couple of inexpensive frames. Then print out a simple sign asking clients to leave reviews. Put the frames on your desk, your counter or in your waiting area. Make the wording friendly; no one likes to be scolded or badgered. Casual encouragement like, “We love positive feedback — and we’d love to have yours. If you’re happy with our service, take a moment to leave us an online review. If you’re not, let us know right now so we can make it right.”
5. MAKE IT PART OF YOUR ON-HOLD MESSAGE
This one is pretty self-explanatory. Most businesses have an on-hold message that describes their services or benefits. It’s a simple task to add a few words about providing online reviews. Don’t make your requests too often during your messaging, or it could potentially annoy clients who are already being patient and waiting to be served.
6. REACH OUT THROUGH SOCIAL MEDIA
Hopefully, you already have a presence on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter or another social media site. Capitalize on the “social” aspect by reaching out directly to clients or by posting occasional reminders encouraging people to leave reviews. Again, keep it upbeat and emphasize how you love to hear positive feedback.
Online reviews can have a big impact on your agency’s success. Taking some time to implement these six ideas in a thoughtful and client-friendly manner can go a long way toward getting you the positive reviews you need to help your business grow, thrive and succeed.