Employee-Specific Online Reviews

Online Marketing

By Heather MacKinnon

Remem­ber the for­mer three-ring binders known as “Evi­dence Man­u­als” that you used to see on the desks of sales asso­ciates or ser­vice writ­ers? Evi­dence man­u­als have been use­ful tools that your staff has relied on to help val­i­date what they are offer­ing a cus­tomer when that cus­tomer was already in the show­room or ser­vice depart­ment.

Today, your deal­er­ship staff can give prospec­tive cus­tomers access to the dig­i­tal-age equiv­a­lent of an Evi­dence Man­u­al with employ­ee-spe­cif­ic online reviews. Online reviews at the employ­ee-lev­el have con­sid­er­able influ­ence on your prospects and are a pow­er­ful tool in per­suad­ing cus­tomers to vis­it your store while pass­ing up oth­er local deal­ers.

With employ­ee-spe­cif­ic reviews, deal­er employ­ees can rely on a per­son­al online review page to bring down the bar­ri­ers of dis­trust that exist in this busi­ness as well as to dif­fer­en­ti­ate them­selves from the oth­er sales­peo­ple and/or ser­vice writ­ers with whom their cus­tomer may be com­mu­ni­cat­ing.

Some car deal­er review sites, such as Deal­er­Rater, offer com­pre­hen­sive, employ­ee-spe­cif­ic review pages where one can include a per­son­al bio and pho­to­graph for each deal­er staff mem­ber.  Employ­ees are able to build and show­case their respec­tive reviews on these pages and also link them back to the employ­ee pro­file sec­tion on the Dealer’s own web­site.

If you are not using employ­ee-spe­cif­ic review pages to gen­er­ate “review” cham­pi­ons in your sales or ser­vice depart­ments, you are miss­ing out on a pow­er­ful clos­ing tool as well as the oppor­tu­ni­ty to dif­fer­en­ti­ate your­self from com­peti­tor deal­ers and dri­ve more traf­fic to the store.  By fos­ter­ing an employ­ee review cul­ture at your deal­er­ship, you can expect to:

 Bring down the bar­ri­ers of dis­trust and per­suade more cus­tomers to vis­it your store.
 Adopt the dig­i­tal-age equiv­a­lent of the 3-ring bound “Evi­dence Man­u­al” and hyper­link a prospect into an employee’s “Evi­dence Man­u­al” even before they enter the store.
 Ensure your sales and ser­vice team has some “skin in the game” with employ­ee-spe­cif­ic review pages.
 Take advan­tage of this WIN-WIN sce­nario know­ing that every new review for the employ­ee or depart­ment “cham­pi­on” is a new review for the store.

Many deal­ers are using employ­ee-unique reviews to their advan­tage.  These deal­ers rec­og­nize that a review for the employ­ee rep­re­sents a review for the deal­er­ship.  As you estab­lish “review cham­pi­ons” in your sales and ser­vice depart­ments, you can expect your Deal­er­ship review counts to soar.

Heather MacK­in­non, Vice Pres­i­dent of Nation­al Accounts at Deal­er­Rater, can be reached at  heather@dealerrater.com.

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