Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Accentuate the Positive

(1:02) It's great when a boater compliments your marina. An honest assessment from a happy customer is worth more than pages of glossy pictures and professionally written prose. It's what any good business strives for. Make sure you're getting everything you can out of these marketing gems. The best way is to have a plan. Here are four things you can do to maximize your positive reviews.

(0:50) 1. Say thank you. Make sure you always acknowledge a customer who has praised your marina. This simple act will not only reinforce good feelings, it will make the boater more likely to visit again and tell others. Use ActiveCaptain's messaging feature to send a personal message to the reviewer.
I covered messaging in a Minute a couple of weeks ago. If you missed it you can find it on my blog: 

(0:41) 2. Show your employees. Share positive reviews with your staff. Many marinas post glowing ActiveCaptain reviews on bulletin boards with a "way to go" message. If you are part of a large organization make sure management knows, especially if a staff member is called out in the review.

(0:33) 3. Show your customers. Let boaters know what the world thinks. Display positive comments on your website. Reviews from the ActiveCaptain site can be displayed on another site as long as the source is acknowledged to fulfill copyright requirements and a link is provided back to the site. It is best to provide a link directly back to your marker. There's no easier way to encourage additional reviews. Sponsors can use the abbreviated link from their Boater Review Card.

(0:19) 4. Discover how you can do better. While compliments certainly make everyone feel good, this is not the time to rest on your laurels. Even 5 star reviews will often have a mention of a disappointment or area that needs improvement. Sometimes a boater's compliment can reveal a needed service. Was there an effort mentioned that was out of the ordinary? Consider making it part of your offerings.

(0:08) Customer reviews are telling you loud and clear what boaters want. Pay attention, learn from their comments, and use this knowledge to bring more boaters to your marina.

(0:02) And that's the marina minute.