The best form of advertising has and always will be word of mouth — one consumer tells a friend, who tells another. In today’s world, this means a consumer sharing their opinions via online review sites like Google Places. Not only are online reviews becoming a key factor with consumers, they also determine what order businesses are listed in on these popular web sites. That’s why it is important for funeral homes to develop a process for asking for positive online reviews.
Online Review Sites to Visit
There are many online review sites out there. In fact, it is hard to keep track of all of them. Here are a few of the top ones that you should set up or claim for your funeral home:
Once you’ve created a profile for your business on these sites, you are ready to invite families to give you reviews.
Getting Online Reviews For Your Funeral Home
Send an Email Marketing Campaign Dedicated to Generating Reviews: A few weeks after a service (or at whatever interval you feel comfortable with), send a follow-up email asking them to write a review. (You could also send a traditional letter, but the odds of getting a review are reduced since the person isn’t already online.) Give them the option to share their opinions publicly or privately. Here is a sample email you could use:
Online reviews are becoming more and more valuable to businesses like ours. If you have nice things to say about us or your experience here, you would be helping us if you would take a few minutes and share your experiences on one of the online review sites listed below.
There are several different review sites where reviews can be posted for us. Here are direct links to our business in each of them:
Your review can be short and sweet – it should only take a few minutes. Thank you for your willingness to help us out!
P.S. If you don’t feel that you can provide a positive review of your experience with our funeral home, please call me right away at 111-222-3333 or respond to this email. I pride myself in providing excellent service and if, for any reason, you don’t feel that this was evident in your service, please let me know.
The review sites you list should include direct links to your review page. Most email programs offer tools that will turn your URL into a link or paste the entire link URL in the body of the email and ask families to cut and paste.
Include Links to Your Review Properties in Your Email Signature – Speaking of email, funeral homes should take advantage of every opportunity to generate new customer reviews on all their properties. Links should be included in the email signatures of everyone in your company, especially those interacting with people on a daily basis.
Create a Card With Links For Staff To Hand Out – It’s always best to “capture the moment” when a client offers positive feedback and inquire if they would be willing to “digitize” their comments, which can then help others just like themselves. Many times, that will be during the service or arrangement meetings. Give your staff a card with the Online Review website URLs and brief instructions.
You may get a lot of questions from people who aren’t familiar with the Internet, so you can always take their testimonials verbally and add them to your funeral home’s website instead. Online reviews anywhere – as long as they are positive – can only help!
If you aren’t sure where to start with your online reviews or would like help with all things Internet marketing, please call adfinity at 1-877-251-1222 today!
(Originally published in March 2013; updated July 2017)