Reputation management is relatively new to internet marketing and it's already getting pretty sophisticated. But with that comes a cost and a price. Prices range from $500 to $5000 per year. Here's the thing... you may already have the tools within the scope of your web arsenal to do this without shelling out a nickel!
We've interviewed a number of our clients relative to reputation management software they are currently using and it seems to come down to this: "The service we're using has a LOT of features but the biggest value we derive from it is to increase the number of 4-star and 5 star reviews."
The software and services often includes features associated with marketing automation solutions, customer relationship management (CRM) tools, email marketing, custom forms, landing pages, autoresponders and even some artificial intelligence software. It's pretty sophisticated stuff sometimes but in can also be overkill and overpriced for the benefits you're actually deriving from it.
Here's a simple reputation management solution you can do on your own to derive the same benefits. It doesn't rely on a lot of features but it will help you get the same results. For implementing this solution you'll need the following:
1. Your client email list
2. The ability to add 5 or 6 pages to your website
3. The ability to add forms on your website (with autoresponder capability)
- Use existing website software and applications
- Use existing resources within the scope of current SEO and Web Management Solutions (no added costs) – while a lot of reputation management companies are using marketing automation, I’m tracking some of it and honestly I find it a bit too spammy for my taste. We can start with what I’ve outlined below and we can apply some marketing automation to it in the future (setup link triggers, followups etc). But for now, I think this will work.
1. Create a simple survey based email (You can use Outlook or any email client). Plan on reusing the copy so - Keep it simple…
2. Here’s how I’m thinking the Email will look:
Dear [First Name]:
[Paragraph (We’d like to get your feedback)]
How are we doing? (Select one option) [each of these options will link to a page on your site]
ם 1 – You’re Not doing good at all (Links to page to setup a phone conversation and lets the customer vent a little on the page))
ם 2 – Could Use a LOT of improvement (Links to page allowing customer to explain what we could be doing better with options to reach out)
ם 3 – You’re doing OK (Links to a page that asks what we’re doing right and how you think we can improve.
ם 4 – We Like What We See (Links to a page asking for a direct testimonial and provides links to places on the web that you can post to. Also ask if there is anything we can do to improve)
ם 5 – You’re Doing Awesome (Links to a page linking to several places on the web where they can add testimonials. )
Each of the 5 links will go to a specific page in the site, the tone of which will depend on which link was clicked. A form on that page should request basic information, first, last, etc and then let the client either explain his issues or provide a brief testimonial. The reason we want the form software to have an autoresponder feature is once it is submitted, the autoresponder should go out immediately thanking the client and depending on which page the form was submitted from setup followup actions.
On pages from links 4 and 5, the form autoresponder will send an email to the visitor requesting an ONLINE TESTIMONIAL and will send them to a page on the site where they can select from a variety of options that link to web testimonial pages.
On page links 1,2,3, the form autoresponder will send a thank you email saying we’ll be in touch if you requested us to contact you.
This entire campaign can be setup in a matter of 3-4 hours max. You'll not only get the same value out of the software you could be spending $100's / month on but you have opened a direct communication channel to your clients and that's more precious than gold.