My clients are often surprised to find out I will not work with more than one of the same type of business in the same city.
What Works for You Won’t Get Used Against You
This is an issue I feel very strongly about, and there’s a solid reason behind it: What has worked really well for you can easily work against you, especially when it’s the same person managing both sides.
One per industry rational – I know your profitable keywords & messages
When I’m managing a client’s Google Ads account, I discover the most profitable keywords, marketing messages and website strategies for their type of business.
While larger agencies can assign competing accounts to different team members and might keep the data separate and not share information, I run an owner-operated business with a team of one: me. I can’t compartmentalize competing accounts, and since I don’t want to use the same information to go against what’s working for one loyal client to benefit another, I refuse to work with competing businesses.
How it all started
This policy started with two dentists in Denver, Colorado. I had been working with one dentist there for more than a year, and we had seen a lot of success through his Google Ads account, when a second dentist in that city called to ask if I could manage his Google Ads account as well.
I quickly realized that all the ideas I was going to implement on the second dentist’s account were things I had done successfully with the first dentist. This didn’t sit right with me, because I would literally be using everything I had learned about the first dentist against him.
A few days after I emailed the second dentist to let him know why I could not work with him, the first dentist reached out and told me the two of them are friends, and that they exchange information all the time. He was okay with me working with the second dentist.
Your competitive edge is for you and your business
Most of the time however, it does not work out like this. Competing businesses want to know they have an edge over each other, and not sharing their Google Ads manager is a key part of this.
Loyal to my Clients
Since then, I have refused to work with anyone in the same industry as any of my existing clients. I am passionate about getting the right keywords, ads and website pages to work cohesively to increase sales and conversions for my clients. But I’m even more passionate about staying loyal to my clients, and not using their information against them.
So, you can rest assured that if Bird’s Eye Marketing manages your Google Advertising account, I will not work for your competitors. You will be the only one.
Medical terms on your website may trigger disapproved medical ads status. here’s what you can do.
Two of my clients—a dental office and a medical doctor’s office—were flagged for having terms like ‘Nitrous Oxide’ and ‘Botox’ on their websites.
Your medical office may offer procedures that require the use of specific terminology that can get your Google Ads disapproved.
Disapproved medical ads may show with a ‘restricted’ status.
Once Google flags and disapproves your medical ads, it will restrict or altogether stop showing your ads. In either case, your ads become less effective and your impressions, clicks, and other important metrics will decline.
At this point, you have two choices:
- Remove the offending terms completely from your website, which is not practical or recommended because these terms show what your business offers.
- Get certified by Google as a licensed provider.
When I began researching how to remove the restrictive flags from my customer’s Google Ads, I found a lot of comments in the chat forums about how difficult the process is, and how ‘Google is not helpful’ when it comes to getting a business medically certified. However, I experienced the opposite. By following Google’s procedures, I was able to quickly and smoothly certify my clients’ websites.
How to get the medical restrictive flags lifted from your Google Ads
Google wants to be assured that you are licensed to offer the medical services mentioned on your website. To give them this assurance, you need to get Google to certify your website as a licensed provider of medical services.
What you need before you start your application:
- A copy of your license from your governing body.
- A link to your governing body that shows you as a licensed practitioner.
- If you are an agency acting on behalf of a medical practitioner, you will need a letter authorizing you to represent the medical business. This letter must be on the medical client’s letterhead. Google provides a link to a letter you can copy.
Applying for Google Medical Certification
To get Google Medical Certification for your website, fill out the simple form at https://support.google.com/google-ads/troubleshooter/6099627#ts=6099435%2C2897613.
You will notice the form is biased towards pharmaceuticals over medical offices. As a medical practitioner office, you will need to apply as a ‘Pharmacy’ on the first question.
Agency or Not Agency
If you are applying on your own behalf, answer ‘no’ to this question.
If you are an agency acting on behalf of a medical clinic trying to fix disapproved medical ads, you will need to provide a letter authorizing you to represent the medical business. Click on the link for the sample letter and copy it. Complete the letter, then have your client print or scan it on their letterhead. Then, upload the signed letter as per the instructions.
In this same space, upload a copy of your practitioner license.
Rest of the form
Complete the rest of the form with your name, address, etc. as requested.
The last question
This is where you need the link to your professional governing body. The link you provide Google should go directly to the medical practitioner’s profile; Google will not search a governing body’s website for a name.
Once you submit the form, Google may take a few days to reply. If your submission meets their criteria, Google will put a medical certification on your website so your ads are no longer restricted.
If you are having trouble with your healthcare advertising, why not get a free consultation from Bird’s Eye Marketing.
Digital Mainstreet is a free government program that helps small and home-based businesses grow, promote and sell online.
There are a lot of obstacles small and home-based business owners face when it comes to adopting digital tools and technology, including time, money, and lack of tech savvy. A new program aims to help.
Digital Mainstreet is a free, government-run program that targets small and home-based business that want to increase their online presence.
When a small business is accepted into the program, it will be assigned an advisor. This is an experienced digital expert who will help the business owner build strategies and assess the businesses’ needs. Advisors are paid through the program, and each business gets up to six hours of its advisor’s time at no charge.
Any work recommended by the advisor, including building an online store, website, or social media page, is done by recent graduates under the supervision of experienced professionals. The grads get valuable hands-on experience, and entrepreneurs get a a digital platform to grow their businesses online. Talk about a win-win!
Here are some Digital Mainstreet success stories I know about:
- My kids’ hair salon had an e-commerce website built so they could sell haircare products online;
- A home-based artist had a full website built to promote paintings online;
- An addiction not-for-profit is getting a whole new website and Google Ads training;
- A local restaurant is putting their menu online and introducing take-out service; and
- A psychotherapist’s Facebook page is being redesigned and she is getting social media training.
Learn More and Apply
Ottawa’s Digital Mainstreet program is operated by Invest Ottawa. Learn more and apply.
Not in Ottawa? Digital Mainstreet is an Ontario-wide program. Visit their main website to learn more.
This is a great opportunity for businesses to get some expert assistance with their online presence. Let me know if you have any questions.
Thank you for coming to today’s webinar. You can download your copy by clicking on the presentation picture below:
Uncover Your Website Secrets with Google Analytics will be my next webinar. We’ll talk about setting up goals and reading some of the more significant reports. The webinar is free, just register by completing the short form:
Customer Reviews are more than just a huge compliment. They offer social proof to potential customers that your product or service is worth the purchase, and they help with your Google rankings.
I’ve seen several of my customers move from internet obscurity to the top of search results because of positive reviews on their Google My Business listing.
Customers See Success After Asking for Reviews
One of my customers gets more than 75 reviews a year (actually in six months, it’s a seasonal business) and has a 4.8 star rating out of five. She runs a bike tour and rental company in downtown Ottawa, and at the end of each tour, she asks her customers to review her business if they enjoyed the tour.
Another customer gets close to 150 reviews a year and maintains a 4.7 star rating out of five. When their customers receive a follow-up text on their phones for their next appointment, it is accompanied by a request for a review, and a link to where that review can be written and submitted.
Both customers consistently appear in the ‘map pack’ on Google’s search results, and both receive more than 40% of their sales leads from their Google My Business listing.
How to Get a Customer Review – Ask for it!
Reviews make a difference! It’s too bad every satisfied customer does not automatically go to Google and post a review. Instead, we must ask for reviews, which can feel awkward. I have helped a lot of my customers with this.
I’m often asked, ‘How do I get more reviews?’ The simple answer is: Ask for a review.
No, really. When you know your customer is happy with your product or service, just ask them to leave a positive review. Here are some examples of how this can be done:
Face to Face or On the Phone: How to ask for a Google Review
‘Would you mind giving my business a review on Google’?
‘Would you mind sharing your experience in a Google Review?’
Follow up with an email
If the customer has not posted a review within a couple of days, send a follow up email that includes the link to your reviews (see below).
Hi Customer Name; that was a great meeting / phone call on X day. If you have time, could you please give a review of your experience?
Ask for a Google Review in an Email
You may choose to send an automated ‘ask for a review’ email to your customers. If you are a high-volume transactional business, this kind of system may work well for you.
Here are some email messages that have worked well:
If you’ve been working with the customer for a few months or more:
Subject Line: A Favour
Hi First Name;
I hope you are doing well. Last X Month, we worked together on your Google Analytics and Google My Business accounts. I wanted to check in to see if you had questions or need anything explained. Please let me know.
Also, I wanted to know if you would be interested in leaving a review of my work on Google. It helps others know what they are getting into when/if they hire me. If you wish to leave a review, here’s the link: [Insert your Google link – see ‘Do Not Forget Your Review Link’ section below]
As ask as part of a general email
The following review request was at the bottom of a mass email I received from a company I do business with (I do not know how well it worked):
‘If you feel we have earned it, please leave us a positive Google review (they should have added their link), like our Facebook page or follow us on Instagram. Your recommendation and referrals are the greatest compliment we can ever receive. Thank you!’
Review request delivered with the product
This request came with a USB hub that I ordered from Sabrent:
Do Not Forget Your Review Link
Google makes it easy for you to ask customers for a review. You can get a link directly from your Google My Business homepage. Here’s how:
- Log into your Google My Business account.
- Scroll down on the homepage until you see this:
- Click on ‘Share review form’ and this screen opens:
- Copy and paste that link into your message. When your customer clicks the link, it goes directly to your review page. They don’t have to look for where to place their review. Here’s what your customer sees – all they have to do is write the review:
Respond to Reviews
When the reviews start pouring in, don’t forget to respond to each one: The good, the bad, and even the man cold reviews!
Warning: Do not Compensate Customers or offer discounts and Get Fake Reviews
Google is on the lookout for fake reviews, good and bad. It’s not unheard of for Google to penalize companies that engage in fake reviews or get caught compensating for reviews. I highly recommend you not do this!
Review Requests That Have Worked for You
If you have review requests that have worked for you, please share them in the comments below.