As a teacher and trainer in Social Media Marketing, one of the most common questions I get is, “Jason, I have a small business and we depend on Yelp… but how do we get reviews?” My easy answer is: ask. Simply asking happy customers, “Hey, could you do me a favor… please write us an honest review on Yelp,” is the No. 1, easiest way to get reviews. You’ll ask ten customers to get one review, but over time, you’ll see a steady increase in reviews on Yelp (or Google+).
Local SEO / Social Media – Getting Reviews on Yelp
But there’s another easy way to get reviews on Yelp, easily: provide really horrible, rude service after completely screwing up a customer order. Ha, ha, ha. I am not kidding, however. In today’s environment, any customer can write a review of your local business with the click of a button. This is especially true in San Francisco, the home town of Yelp, but it is true anywhere.
For example… Recently, we just got home from our annual summer road trip from the San Francisco Bay Area to Tulsa, Oklahoma, and Plano, Texas, and back. In Plano, Texas, we have a family tradition of going to Bone Daddy’s BBQ restaurant in Plano. This year, however, the service was beyond terrible: our food came out late, the waitress was scruffy to be polite, and the manager was not very much better. So, what did I do? Go onto Yelp and re-write my “good” review into a “bad review.” You can read my review of Bone Daddy’s Plano Texas to see what I’m talking about.
Next, the Karma of the universe intervened. We were in Tehachapi, California, on our way back, and stopped by McDonald’s. (Not a lot of food options on highway 58). McDonald’s fouled up our order, and my wife called in to complain. I expected the worst: sorry, Charlie, sort of attitude. But instead, they comped us our food, refilled our order, and were incredibly nice about the whole thing. Score #1 for McDonald’s. So I wrote a positive review of McDonald’s… and was amazed at how their service put Bond Daddy’s to shame.
Morals of the Story: Getting Reviews on Yelp
Moral of the story for local reviews. #1 – ask for reviews from happy customers. #2 – if you have a mix-up, fix it for the customer and go beyond the call of duty… to prevent a) a bad review, and b) possibly get a good review. #3 – stop by McDonald’s in Tehachapi, California, for incredible service at the place you’ll least expect it!