If you’ve been following along, you now recognize the value of reviews. For local businesses, online reviews, like those on Google, have rapidly become the new “word of mouth”. Especially in the aging services industries. Getting more reviews is essential to getting more customers.
In senior living specifically, 82% of families used online reviews as part of their research process. 82%!
The reviews expressed about your business online can make or break your reputation.
At this point, ignoring them is not an option. And if it’s not already, reputation management has to be a priority for your business this year.
The Ultimate Guide to Getting More Reviews in Senior Living
Getting more reviews doesn’t have to be a challenge. Truthfully, there are only 3 major steps to building and maintaining your digital reputation.
- Optimizing your review profiles
- Crafting a review strategy
- Empowering your team to Implement your plan
Optimize Your Profiles
The first step to getting more reviews in senior living is to make sure your review profiles are optimized.
Start by claiming & verifying your business across all major review platforms like:
- Google My Business
- A Place for Mom (powered by Senior Advisor)
- Bing Places
- Facebook Ratings and Reviews
Each of these profiles will have different information you can showcase. But, for the sake of time, let’s focus on Google My Business. Google is the #1 search engine in the world and if you’re only going to optimize one profile, let it be that one.
Business Information to Showcase
NAP: Short for Name, Address, Phone number, this info is vital to your profile. Be sure your business name, address, and phone number are correct. Potential customers can’t reach you if they don’t have your information!
Description: Write out a short, 2-3 sentence description of your senior living community that can be added to each of your profiles and then a longer, 2-3 paragraph (or more) description you can add to sites like A Place for Mom or Facebook that allow for more in-depth details.
Service Area & Hours: If your senior living community only has one physical location but accepts residents from the surrounding cities or counties, you can add them to your listing. This helps reassure prospective customers that you’re willing to serve them.
Photos: Adding current photos from in & outside of your facility is a great way to draw families in. Families looking for senior living services want to see each aspect of your community, even before a tour.
Craft a Review Strategy
In order for your review strategy to be successful, it must have these 3 components:
- A plan to identify your current Raving Fans (to get reviews right away)
- A System to continuously generate reviews (even when you’re not actively asking)
- A way to manage your reviews (and make the most out them on other platforms)
Identify Your Raving Fans
Raving fans are those residents, family members, or even associates who love what you do and aren’t shy about sharing!
Think hard about your current residents and their families. Identify any who fit the definition of a Raving Fan make note of them in your current CRM.
Once you identify them in your CRM, send out an e-mail to make the ask. Link them directly to your newly optimized Google My Business page and politely ask for a review. Be sure to respond with a “Thank you” to each and every person who leaves a review on and off your business listing.
Generate More Reviews
According to the marketing platform, Bright Local, the average local business has 39 Google reviews. Senior living services, however, only have seven.
Not only that, senior living services, (along with car dealerships and hotels) have the lowest average Google star ratings.
So how can you surpass that? Ask! It’s as simple as that. You won’t get reviews if you’re not proactive about asking for them.
Think really hard about your customer journey, what are the moments that matter?
Is it after a tour? After a lease is signed? After a resident has settled into their space?
Taking the above examples you may note in your CRM to follow-up with a review-specific email 3 days after a tour, 5 days after a lease is signed, and 10-15 days after a resident moves in.
Do exactly what you did after identifying your initial Raving Fans. Send a polite email asking for a review and be sure to respond with gratitude.
Make the Most of Your Reviews
Your Google Reviews are the social proof families are trusting to validate their decisions when choosing the right business for their needs. Be sure you have a proactive plan in place to highlight those raving fans who love and want to share your business with the world!
Once you begin to get reviews for your community, it’s important to make the most of them. Positive reviews can be used for Social Media, Email Campaigns or even Marketing Materials like brochures for prospective residents and their families.
Negative reviews can be used as a learning experience. On your business listing, always apologize to the reviewer and offer to call or email them directly. Take notes from the experience and make any changes to avoid negative situations in the future.
Empower Your Team
The last piece of the puzzle to getting more reviews in senior living is to empower your team. This strategy. This plan. It doesn’t work unless everyone on your staff is on board.
Create a culture where identifying your Raving Fans and asking for reviews is encouraged and is a normal part of the process of interacting with residents and their families.
The benefits are overwhelming!
Now It’s Time to Take Action
The next step in your reputation management journey is to take action. And you can only do that by implementing the tasks listed above.
But, if you’re still on the fence or you want even more in-depth info about getting reviews for your senior living community, sign-up for our Raving Fans Email Course.
In this course, you’ll learn:
- The exact steps your community can take to start increasing reviews.
- Key details to look for when optimizing your profiles for reviews.
- #1 step that most senior living communities overlook when quickly increasing their reviews.
- Specific reasons that generating reviews is not a one-person job.
- Ways to extend the reach and value of the raving fan reviews that you are generating.
Enter your info below to get instant access!