3 Actions To Better Manage Yelp
Managing your listing on third party websites like Yelp is an important part of reputation management. So look at best practices for Yelp.
Yelp started in 2005 as a user review and local search website. Its social networking functionality has helped the company grow fast:
- Operates in 50+ cities, 8 countries & sports 4 languages.
- Nearly 40 million people visited the site in November 2010.
- Boasts an inventory of 15 million reviews.
- Reviews are growing at a rate of 11 per minute.
- Traffic grew 50% in 2010, and markets opened in France, Germany, Austria, and the Netherlands.
Advice from a Yelp Community Manager
Recently I had the pleasure of meeting Damien Smith, Yelp’s regional Marketing Director and Community Manager for Boston.
Damien, originally from Fort Myers, is a breezy, affable fellow. An elite Yelper since 2007, he’s earned his stripes and boasts a Yelp profile featuring more than 2,000 compliments, 542 friends, and 212 business reviews.
Combine that with work experience in account management, IT sales and TV news reporting, and he’s got more than what it takes to run a premier Yelp market.
Damien spoke with me about 3 actions all businesses should take:
#1. Claim Your Company Yelp Page
According to Damien, claiming your listing on Yelp is priority #1. It’s free, easy to do, and you’ll get to list your business url, a feature TripAdvisor charges for.
User generated content brings authenticity to your page. But businesses need to monitor their Yelp page for accuracy, and benefit when they contribute content like company facts, special offers, and up-to-date images.
#2. Never [Ever] Solicit Reviews
Damien advises businesses to embrace Yelp’s core value proposition: Real people. Real reviews. Two bad things can happen if you don’t:
- You lose guest trust, and might end up the subject in a Yelp Talk Blog as a business with Spelp [Spam + Yelp = Spelp].
- Solicited reviews get filtered from your page, so it’s a futile effort. Earn your reviews the old fashioned way: deliver great customer service.
#3. Take Advantage of Yelp Resources
- Use Yelp’s free business tools.
- Follow the Official Yelp Blog to stay abreast of updates, like the new, mobile check-in feature.
- Know your Community Manager, and don’t be shy about asking for help.
- Get inspired by reading case studies of businesses thriving on Yelp that don’t pay the company a dime.
The Bottom Line
Yelp isn’t just about reviews!
It’s a community of millions that follow and friend each other, just like on Facebook. Right now, there are Yelp events happening in your city, a tribe of elite Yelpers you want to know, and mobile opportunities galore to explore.
How have you used Yelp to grow your business and connect with customers?