Tuesday 19 April 2016

Just do it!

This article is written for:
  • those considering adopting Dialogue™
  • new clients 
  • existing clients - in case they need a refresher
Here we aim to address all the main questions we are asked about adopting Dialogue and then getting it working to its very best effect.

We understand that review management is a relatively new discipline for almost all our clients, even if you have been deeply involved with the likes of Google, Yelp or TripAdvisor in the past, so please read on.

First: What is HelpHound?

We are professional review managers. We enable our clients, whatever their business or service, to do two things:
  • display independently verified reviews on their own websites
  • get a proportion of those reviews copied across to Google - or any other open site that matters     
...all designed to drive more business to and through your own website. We provide detailed tailored professional advice on all matters relating to reviews, including:
  • appealing negative reviews
  • responding to reviews - both positive and negative
  • making the most of reviews in your marketing and public relations   

What is HelpHound not? 

HelpHound is not a review website. We used to be back in the day – but we took what we learned – foremost amongst which was that independent review sites were not what businesses needed in the long term – and put it into HelpHound.biz. This means that we have no bias for or against any external site – if appearing on one is the best advice for our client, that is the advice we will give.

And we are definitely not what has increasingly become known as ‘reputation management’: the dark art of burying bad news by flooding the web with spurious information. If you have bad customer relations, please mend them before contacting us. If, on the other hand, you work hard at doing your very best for your customers, we will make sure the world – and the web – know that.

Now - your questions answered:

Note: for simplicity's sake we have illustrated this article with examples from our estate agent clients, but the basic message - just do it! - applies to all businesses. 

Will we get great reviews?

  Here is a recent client - already they look great on both Google and their own website

Yes: if your are a great business - just do it! If you are aware of weaknesses in your CRM, address them and then call us.

Will we get any negative reviews?

Yes (no business is perfect): but if you are a great business almost all your reviews will be positive. Resolution enables you to make sure that unfair, misleading or or inaccurate reviews can be corrected before publication. Just do it!

Can we reply to reviews?

Yes - on Dialogue and on Google (see below); in fact we will prompt you to do so. Just do it!

Will we get great reviews to Google?

 Our clients consistently report that having reviews like this drives traffic to their websites

Yes: some of our clients get as many as half the reviews posted to their websites onto Google. Just do it!

Will reviews - on Google - drive business?

 Everyone who ever searches for this business - whether they be an existing or potential customer -  sees this. With 134 reviews and a score of 4.9, how could they fail to be favourably impressed? The three rich snippets add further weight to the message.

Yes: but the way they will do it is important to understand: in the majority of cases looking great on Google will drive traffic to your website; it's the great reviews there that will drive business. Just do it!

So: will having great reviews - on our own website - drive business?

 All the evidence shows that it is hosting verified reviews like this on your website that drives new business

Yes: Customer opinions always rank a close second to personal recommendations in the eyes of consumers. Hosting them on your website supports all of your marketing efforts. Just do it!

Is independent verification important?

Yes: without verification by an external body your reviews revert to the status of testimonials. If your customers' opinions are going to carry weight they must be independently verified. Just do it!

Why don't you advise us to use independent review sites? 

We do - and we have in the past - when we consider that to be the best advice. At the moment - and for the foreseeable future - Google dominates, so that's where we focus the majority of our - and your - efforts. Just do it! 

How do we make sure to get a consistent flow of reviews?

Warn your customer - from first contact - that they will be expected to write a review (and copy it to Google). Then email them asking for their review. Follow the email with an immediate phone call to reinforce the message that the review - and copying it to Google - is important to you. Just do it!

Do people resent being asked?

No: on the contrary: most people are flattered - and those that are more hard-headed completely understand why you need reviews in 2016. Just do it!

Do people copy their review to Google?

Yes. Nearly 17 million people in the UK can now write a Google review at the click of a button (without having  to register). On top of that our most successful clients have nearly half their Google reviews written by customers who had to sign up first. Just do it!

Will reviews help us appear in the Google 3-pack?

 Looking this good in the 3-pack must help!

Dialogue is not about SEO, but it's astonishing just how many of our clients do appear in the 3-pack within a year of joining. Just do it!

When will Google introduce their filter for businesses outside the hospitality industry?

We cannot tell (and Google is very unlikely to warn anyone before they do - just as they did not before launching the filter on 1 January this year). Our advice is to establish a rock-solid Google score of as near to the maximum (5.0) as you - and we - can, so, in the event that the filter is introduced for your type of business, you are not filtered out of search. Just do it!

When will Google introduce ranking in local search?

That is the $64,000 question. It is inevitable: which of us, as consumers, would not prefer search results that returned the best - in the opinion of their customers - businesses? Google are fully aware of this, so ranking must come. And one of our main jobs is to make sure that all our clients are fully prepared when it does. Just do it!

We already have great reviews on Google - do we need Dialogue?

This agency has just joined - they fully understood the value of having independently verified reviews on their own website

Yes. For two reasons: having independently verified reviews on your own website will drive business; second: Resolution will make sure no inaccurate or misleading reviews are posted to Google. If your staff are already used to getting reviews to Google, adopting Dialogue should be second-nature for them. Just do it!

We already have great reviews on an independent review site - do we need Dialogue?

We cannot repeat this enough: your customers are looking at Google and your own site. That's where your reviews need to be. Just do it!

Do we need reviews on all our branches? 

If you provide a service, the answer is generally 'yes'. Your potential client wants to know how good the personnel in your estate agency/osteopath/insurance brokerage in their location are. Even if your business is product based - your sell photographic equipment, for instance - your potential customers will want to know if you provide great service and advice in the location they are using. Just do it!

Can the design of your module be tailored?

Yes. As long as our logo and the words 'verified by HelpHound' are retained. Just do it! 
Can the questions we ask be tailored?

Yes. The only constant is 'Overall Opinion' - for obvious reasons. After that the questions are up to you. If you want to ask "Do you like our new shop design?" for a period, that's fine by us. Just do it!

Can HelpHound answer a question that's not included here?

Yes: call Karen Hutchings or Fiona Christie on 020 7100-2233 and they will answer it straight away. It will then be added to this article. Just do it!

And the last word? 

We will leave that to a recent client:


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