The best time to capture a review from a happy customer is while they are with you at your place of business. As soon as your satisfied customers leave your building, the likelihood that they will place a review on Google Places is reduced. Business owners have been struggling to establish easy processes to increase their direct Google Places reviews. Solutions are on the way!
Google introduced Google Hotpot as a way to simplify posting reviews on Google Places. Until recently there was no convenient way to post a review on Google Places from a mobile device.
Before this app was available, it was a painful process to post a review on Google Places from my iPad. This new app solves that issue and opens the door to empower business owners to collect more reviews.
Google has just published their Google Places App which is available for download on the iTunes store. This app will bring a significant change to how reviews are posted directly on Google Places.
It will also bring direct competition to Yelp.com and other platforms that have similar mobile ratings apps.
Google Places does roll-up reviews from many different review websites but my recommendation is that if you need a place to start your IRM process, begin with posting reviews directly on Google Places.
For business owners, this means they can load an iPad or iPhone with the Google Places App which gives them an easy, one click path, to their business listing ratings page on Google Places.
The Google HotPot technology will automatically show all businesses near the location of the mobile device. If you have not played with Google Hotpot, get busy. It really makes posting reviews for any business a breeze.
For car dealers, imagine if during the sales and service processes you ask your customers is they have a Google Account. If they do, you can pass them an iPhone or iPad on the public 3G network and ask them to post a review using their gmail account.
The Google Places App makes it so easy for the customer and they are using their EXISTING Google email. You also have no IP address issues that prevent dealers from getting in store reviews from sites like DealerRater.com. In reality, Google wants consumers to post reviews on the spot. Did you enjoy your meal? Post a review. Did your oil change go smoothly? Post a review.
I wonder if DealerRater and other automotive specific websites will start to release mobile apps and unshackle car dealers from the duplicate IP address issues that are antiquated.
Soon, you won't have to pass them an iPad you can just ask them if they downloaded the Google Places App and they can vote from their own phone. This new app will significantly increase reviews on Google Places.
While you are implementing the mobile review process outlined above, you can also craft a special email to your customers that have given you a Google "gmail" address on their customer file. Since they have a Google account, sending them a link to your Google Places review page.
This brings your customers one click away from being able to post a review. Your email template for these customers should state that since they are Google users, they don't have to create an account to post a review. Let them know that its fast and simple.
So if you want more positive reviews, create a mobile strategy for your business and have your customers review your business while they are with you! Are you ready to be the business in your area with the highest number of reviews on Google Places? The race is on!
Brian Pasch, CEO
PCG Digital Marketing