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Driving Positivity


Driving Positivity

Bad reviews happen.  But so do positive.  Make sure you have more of the latter. 

A recent quote from someone in our industry hit the nail on the head: "One bad review out of 20 looks like the customer maybe had a bad day…one bad review out of 3 looks like the business is doing a bad job".  

Every business will and should have some form of negative sentiment.  You can't please all the people all of the time…especially in a high-volume business like restaurants or car dealerships.  It's part of doing business and it makes you human.  See our last blog about negative reviews.  But if your Google reviews look like this image to the right, then you have a problem and it's time to start driving more positive reviews.

Not only do 80% of customers consider NOT doing business after reading a negative review, if those reviews aren't responded to, or if you actually have no positive sentiment at all, you risk that number going higher.    

Here are some best practices - direct from some of our most successful clients who are positively the best when it comes to…well….positivity. 

1) Don't Be an Ass - This is the hardest one, so we're putting it first.  We had a client once tell us that all of his customers are idiots, and he doesn't care what they say.  We actually recommend the opposite.  Your customers are right.  Even when they aren't.  In our experience, customer service sentiment comes from the top.  If you love your customers, so will your employees…and it will show through to your existing customers, potential customers, and your review sentiment.      

2) Ask For It - Most people think that customers just go online to complain.  But studies show that by simply asking a happy customer to spread the word, they will do just that.  Get them when they are the happiest.  While they are in your store, or just after the transaction ask them to go online to leave a positive review.  

3) Make it Easy -  You can ask your clients for reviews, but make sure it's easy for them to do so.  If they are in your store, you can hand them a "thank-you" card with a URL.  The URL could lead to a page on your site with the different review sites and instructions to leave a review.  Alternatively, if you have a CRM (customer relation management) system such as Salesforce, you can email your new happy client with a "thank you"  note and the link.

4) Get Your Staff Involved - One of our clients doesn't pay a salesperson's commission unless their customers have left a certain amount of positive reviews for the month (brilliant).  Let them know how important it for THEM to have positive reviews coming in.  This goes back to #1. 

5) Do it Organically - Stay away from services that will drive positive reviews on your behalf.  Most of them have IP addresses in India and create fake users who leave fake reviews.  This not only looks obvious, but Google has a keen way of knowing what's fake (it's their job).  And Google doesn't like fake.  

Most importantly, make sure you have an eye on all of it.  You should be actively tracking reviews that come in, know the existing landscape of Google+, Yelp, and industry vertical review sites such as DealerRater or, and have a process for responding to negativity as well. 

And yes, 214 Interactive can do this for you.  Our MONITOR software tracks and aggregates reviews into one awesome dashboard, which can easily be managed and reported on.  





3 Things Every Auto Dealer Needs to Survive


3 Things Every Auto Dealer Needs to Survive

2014 may be the time to rethink your online marketing priorities.  What you’re doing now may be frivolous without the proper fundamentals in place.  We’ve listed 3 core priorities that every dealership should have in place before spending another dollar on sending traffic to your website.  

NUMBER ONE:  Online Visibility – How are you appearing online?  Forget about SEO, PPC and everything else.  If your business information is incorrect across the web, your potential customers simply may not find you.  N.A.P. (Name Address Phone) consistency is vital and basic information shared between directories, web applications & mobile apps, and if you have one digit of your phone number off, or you’ve got “Rd. instead of Dr.” in your address, it can cause havoc within these applications.  Example:  Apple Maps relies on Yelp for data, so if your Yelp listing is off, your iPhone clients are lost.

NUMBER TWO:  Reputation – Ok so you’ve got #1 down. Now that people can find your business listing, you’re open to people talking about you online and leaving reviews across the web.  FACT:  70% of people consult online reviews prior to purchasing, and 85% will change their mind about doing business with you if they are subjected to negative reviews.  What about Tweets, Facebook messages, or just banter about your business in forums and directories?  If you’re not aware of what’s being said about you online, you’re letting closet skeletons walk around town and introduce themselves to your customers.  Alert systems can notify you of all mentions of your business (and your competition), which you can then take action on.  The more action you take now, the less mud you’ll have to shovel later. 

NUMBER THREE: Social Media – Forget about the question, “how many cars am I going to sell from it?” and answer this question instead: “How many existing and potential customers am I going to lose by ignoring them?”  Think of Social Media Management as a consolidated effort to reach & respond….to create interactive conversations, outbound marketing messages and cultivate relationships with both existing and potential customers.  When the fastest growing demographic on Facebook are age 45-55 - if you’re not populating your social accounts with compelling content about your business, your industry, and/or your community you’re ignoring your target market who expects a business in 2014 to be ahead of the curve…not just keeping up with it…oh, and you’re in small company.  Only 7% of businesses choose NOT to use Social Media as a marketing avenue. 

Think of these channels as small holes in the Red Solo cup filled with your customers.  You can pour as much traffic into your business as possible, but you will always be leaking customers.  Fill these holes, and then move onto the strategy of filling your cup…and keep a stack nearby too.


Are you an auto dealer looking for help with the above?  Click here for information on how 214 Interactive can help.