Find out how you can encourage customers to leave positive feedback and reviews about your business.
Word of mouth recommendations can be the most powerful marketing tools of a small business. According to a Nielsen survey 92 per cent of consumers say they trust earned media, such as word of mouth and recommendations from friends and family, above all other forms of advertising.
Getting positive reviews online can be one of the simplest and most cost effective ways to promote your business. Here’s how you can do it.
Take an honest approach
Online services that provide phony testimonials do exist. But don’t be tempted – paying for positive reviews is a fast track to internet embarrassment. Referral sites like Trip Advisor have a zero tolerance policy when it comes to fake reviews, and if detected they may reveal the misdemeanour to their worldwide network. Only ever post authentic feedback.
Don’t offer incentives
Customers don’t like to feel they’re being bribed into leaving a good review and this could backfire on you. If you do feel the need to offer something, put everyone who leaves a review into a random prize draw.
Remember the simple things
A survey from Dimensional Research discovered that good customer service was the number one reason a customer would feel compelled to leave a positive review. The old adage of under-promising and over-delivering can result in customers feeling compelled to leave a positive, genuine review.
As they say, “ask and you shall receive.” Let your customers know that their opinion is important to you by being open about wanting to receive their feedback.
Make it easy
There’s nothing worse than having a customer who wants to leave a glowing review, but can’t find an avenue to do it. Make sure your comments section is easy to find on your website and use other contact points like social media and newsletters to let customers know how to leave a review.
Time is essential
A customer is most likely to leave a review within a day or two of their transaction. Send a follow up email within three days to thank them for their business and discreetly point out the opportunity to leave a review.
Develop a strategy for bad reviews
US based communications agency Cone Inc discovered that 80 per cent of customers change their mind after reading a single bad review. Ouch. If you do receive a bad review, handling it promptly and personally has the ability to turn a negative into a positive, as your genuine care for your customers shines through.
A Deloitte study found that seven in ten people who read reviews share them with family and friends. But don’t just leave it to your customers; display testimonials prominently on your website, use them in marketing collateral and share them on social media.