You may have heard of a persistent Presidential candidate who has what is called a “Google Problem”.
I won’t go into the sordid details – and with a little bit of googling you can find out for yourself – but the background of the story is this: the candidate, in a previously held elected position, ticked off a very vocal and tech savvy segment of the American population. Their response was to hijack his name by using it as an adjective for a very graphic act between consenting adults behind closed doors.
If you have googled this already, trust me, you do not want to click the links.
Why do I bring this up? Because you may not know it but you probably have a Google problem, or at least an internet problem, too.
Google search your company, your name, your community and see what comes up in customer reviews, Places, or in links to sites like Yelp. Hopefully you have a bunch of stars next to your company but research says you probably don’t. You’ll want to read the comments people have left as that is what is impacting buyer decisions and long-term impressions more than anything.
What can you do about this? The organic answer is to take real world action to respond to the complaints left online by your customers and guests. When that is done, encourage new and additional customers and guests to leave comments on Google Places, Yelp, Facebook that show you have improved and are doing a better job. You can also attempt to buy your way out of the problem with various internet tools and functions but I recommend the organic path of hard work.
How do you do that? Placards at your point of purchase or requests in your email newsletter will work. You can even ask them face to face during your discussions…that method still works as well!
Want to see what they are saying about you? http://www.google.com/places/