Reputation Marketing vs. Reputation Management
Home inspectors make a living based on their trustworthiness, so they don’t necessarily need to be told that reputation marketing and management is important. Between word-of-mouth and online reviews, it’s clear they need to be careful how they come across to people.
But there’s a difference between managing a reputation and marketing a reputation, and the distinction can give you the edge when it comes to home inspection marketing.
What Exactly Is Reputation Marketing?
Reputation marketing refers to actively and strategically using satisfied customers to get more business instead of relying on traditional word-of-mouth to make its way around town. The more these reviews are featured and promoted, the more likely it is you’ll get the exposure you need for additional clients.
Every home inspector will have their own strategy, but this can include becoming more active on social media, fighting Better Business Bureau claims, or soliciting third-parties to officially cite your business name on related websites.
Reputation management also includes responding to negative reviews and soliciting more feedback from happy customers.
Why Does It Matter?
Home inspectors may not have the most glamorous profession, but they do perform an important service for homebuyers. Customers are looking for someone who is not only thorough and accurate but also easy to work with.
When 84% of people say that online reviews are as trustworthy to them as a personal recommendation, home inspectors need to take this seriously if they hope to maximize their business.
A full 85% of homebuyers will conduct some type of online search before selecting an inspector, and the trend isn’t likely to stop anytime soon. Home inspectors need to identify and target where their reputation may be suffering before attempting to market themselves based on feedback.
How to Get It Done?
Much of reputation marketing for home inspectors is about being aware of the conversation surrounding your service and addressing any potential flaws in your business. From organizations at the top of the food chain (BBB, Consumer Affairs, etc.) to a direct email from a client, any kind of feedback you receive is immediately a part of your brand.
This doesn’t mean that everything said about you has to be positive — statistically speaking, that feat is impossible in any profession. But it does mean being an active participant in how outside parties view what you do.
Part of accomplishing this is practicing positivity and honesty whenever possible. So if an unhappy customer leaves you a review, your goal is to respond in a way that is both polite and explanatory. You may never win over the dissatisfied client, but you can potentially win over other people trying to make up their mind about who to hire.
There are also ways to manage how your information is seen online. For example, if the second website that comes up after you search for your company is from Consumer Affairs, you can add a Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram profile for your company so that this information comes first instead.
There’s a lot to learn about boosting your reputation, but it’s a part of home inspector marketing that really can’t be ignored.
We at The Savvy Inspector wants you to succeed in every aspect of your home inspection business and a huge part of that is leveraging on reputation marketing.