We’ve written a lot about why financial advisers and planners need Google and VouchedFor reviews.
And the message seems to be getting through.
But we’ve noticed that some firms, as well as individual advisers/planners, aren’t getting the number of reviews they should because they’re:
- Making basic mistakes
- Believing myths and misconceptions
- Following their opinion, not our evidence.
So, in this week’s blog, we’re going to lift the lid on these mistakes and explain the consequences of making them.
Mistake #1: Refusing to collect Google reviews because they can be faked
We’ve heard some advisers/planners suggest that Google reviews are completely devalued because they can be faked.
For three reasons, we disagree.
Firstly, 81% of consumers say that online reviews are either important or very important when deciding to use a particular company (Source: BrightLocal).
Secondly, 87% of consumers used Google to evaluate local businesses in 2022, up from 81% in 2021 (Source: BrightLocal).
Thirdly, just because a £10 note can be faked, doesn’t mean your local pub or corner shop won’t take the tenner that’s in your pocket. They simply take precautions to check that it’s legit. The same is true for Google reviews – consumers aren’t daft and it’s generally pretty obvious when they are fake.
Mistake #2: Including your review request in an email about other things
We still see some advisers/planners request Google and VouchedFor reviews in emails about other things, for example, when sending documents after an annual review meeting.
That doesn’t work.
Some clients won’t read to the end of the email, others will focus on different parts of the message.
Instead, send one email that is wholly and exclusively about reviews and nothing else. The email should include two links, one to Google and another to VouchedFor, which leads us nicely to our third mistake…
Mistake #3: Only using one platform
The logic for using two review platforms is inescapable.
The TL;DR version: Google reviews are hard to get so, if you only collect reviews on there, your business will be less impressive online. Click here if you want the longer version.
However, many advisers/planners still choose to only use one platform. Consequently, their business is less impressive online, especially if a potential client searches for a specific adviser/planner instead of their firm.
Mistake #4: Only asking people with a Gmail address for Google reviews
It’s common knowledge that a client needs a Google account/email to leave a review on there.
That leads some advisers to only request Google reviews from clients who definitely have a Gmail account. There are three reasons why this is a mistake that will lead to fewer Google reviews:
- Some clients have multiple email accounts and may have a Gmail address you don’t know about.
- It isn’t always obvious when an email address uses the Google platform. For example, all our Yardstick email addresses run on Google and can be used to leave a review. You wouldn’t know it by looking at them.
- Some clients could be prepared to set up a Gmail account specifically so they can leave you a review. You might be sceptical, but it happens more than you think.
So, if you’re only sending Google review requests to clients with Gmail, please stop.
Mistake #5: Believing that your business is somehow different, and reviews aren’t important
We’ve heard several different variations of this mistake:
- Some advisers/planners believe that, while reviews are important for some advisers/planners, their business is somehow different.
- We’ve heard others suggest that online reviews aren’t relevant for “high net worth” clients.
We’re open to it, but we’ve seen no evidence to prove either hypothesis is correct.
And let’s face it, what do the advisers/planners who make these suggestions have to lose? If they’re correct, having reviews online won’t gain them anything, but they’ve lost nothing by having them. On the flip side, if we’re right, their reviews will impress prospects when they look the firm up online before contacting them.
It’s time to take reviews seriously
If it’s time to turn over a new leaf and start to take Google and VouchedFor reviews seriously, our definitive guide to online reviews is the place to start. In it, you will learn:
- The 7 reasons why you need online reviews
- Why you need to collect reviews on two platforms
- The 3 things you can do to boost your review count
- How to write the perfect reply
- 3 mistakes to avoid
- How to reply to your reviews
- What to do when you get a fake or negative review
- How to get reviews back after Google has taken them down.
Click here to read the guide.
Then, if you need our help, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0115 8965 300.