Your online presence and social media reputation play a vital role in your real estate business — perhaps more than you may recognize. Nearly every homebuyer begins their search online and will look at reviews to see what people say about you. Endorsements carry weight among customers, with nearly 90 percent of consumers saying they trust online reviews as much as word-of-mouth recommendations.
That said, glowing online reviews can not only help to enhance and build your online profile — they are likely one of the key factors in a potential buyer or seller’s decision to contact you or use your services. In fact, the National Association of Realtors’ Profile of Buyers and Sellers indicates that home sellers value the reputation of an agent more than any other factor when selecting an agent to sell their home.
So, whether you’re trying to optimize reviews on your Yelp page, Facebook business page, or Zillow profile, here are three must-remember tips for success:
#1. Let Clients Know About Your Online Profiles
There’s a fine line between making your clients uncomfortable by aggressively asking for reviews versus simply letting them know about your online profiles and their ability to leave a review.
To ensure your clients know they can leave a review, consider adding your social profiles to your website and email signature. If you have a Yelp page, for example, you can add a Yelp button to your email signature, which can immediately take them to your profile. If you’re a broker, you may also consider displaying social media icons in your brokerage’s storefront.
#2 Make Engagement a Priority
You’re probably running a drip email campaign to keep your contacts up-to-date on market conditions, new listings, and events. Consider adding new testimonials to the footer of your email. This not only helps your testimonials and reviews be seen by a wider audience, but it is also a nice way of showing your clients you appreciate that they took the time to review you.
#3 Show Your Thanks
Always send a quick note or thank you card to clients who review your services. Even if the review was less than stellar, you should still reach out. This is a great opportunity to acknowledge the feedback and put steps into place to learn and grow from the experience.
How to Respond to Negative Reviews
While 17 percent of consumers say they would write a review after a positive experience with a brand, many reported that they would be more likely to write a review after a bad experience. If you don’t regularly monitor and respond to your online reviews, you risk sending a potential client straight to one of your competitors. But it’s not just the review itself that’s important. How you respond to that review is often just as important, if not moreso, than the review you received.
When you respond to an online review, here are some things to keep in mind:
- Don’t let your ego or pride get in the way.
- Always keep your response professional — don’t be defensive or let your feelings get the best of you.
- Be empathetic and try to imagine things from your client’s point of view. Try thinking of the client as a friend or relative — respond to the review as if you were talking to someone you care about.
- Do your best to try to resolve any issues and help the client — offer them an easy way to contact you directly to get the problem taken care of.
Build Your Online Reputation
The importance of online reviews and your social reputation grows with every click of a potential client’s mouse. To learn more about finessing your online presence, sign up for our AgentEDU® course, Yelp for Your Real Estate Business, today.