6 min read
Who is the best customer?
I have posed this question to many of my marketer friends.
And universal love was for the customer who takes a moment to share feedback or leave a review.
They unknowingly share something invaluable with us marketers – Powerful content!
According to Hubspot, 91% of buyers check out the reviews of a product or business before making a purchase online.
I am one of them. I don’t even add an item to my cart if majority reviews are negative.
Using testimonials in advertising or marketing solves a big problem for businesses – that of authenticity.
An authentic review can invoke the level of trust that otherwise would take years to build for a brand.
Here’s how you can build a process where testimonial content benefits your business and helps you generate leads.
#1 Ask Everyone
It is that simple because 7 out of 10 people will review your business if you simply ask them. (Source) Don’t forget to start with the old timers before focusing on new customers.
Here is a list of places where your review section should be visible or accessible.
A prominent place on your website
When we are designing a user experience for our audiences, we want to show them the best of us. On the contrary, reviews are a great way to know what exactly they want to see from us. Your home page should have a section where a user can rate or review their experience. It could be about the website, the product or the overall experience.
Product review platforms
If you think that people may not believe the reviews on your website because they’re so good, you’re probably right. The internet is full of skeptics who have had their fair share of cheating. They need a neutral platform to vouch for you. Here’s where product review platforms come into play. Consider being listed on these platforms to make sure your brand has a chance to see the truth better
- G2 Crowd
- Amazon Customer Reviews
- Angie’s List
- Google My Business
and many more…
Sales pitch deck or marketing presentations
More often than not when your sales team is on the ground they are asked for references or past reviews by potential clients. ‘What others have to say about us’ is a powerful sales pitch especially if your review comes from well-known brands. Sometimes it can lead to a deal instantly. A B2B company can benefit from including a slide of such reviews in their marketing and sales deck because they only get one meeting to wow a new client.
On social media
Word travels almost at the speed of light today. And social media is at the core of it. Being on social media platforms can help you find a lot of love for your brand along with some areas to improve. Share your reviews with your audience while dealing with the bad ones. Online reputation management plays a big role in making your brand seem alive. Check this incident with Virgin trains where they reacted instantly to a complaint by a customer.
The buying processes
A whopping 69% of customers who choose products also abandon their shopping carts. (Source)
There are many reasons why but a moment of doubt is what it takes for them to stop a purchase. Putting up good reviews at that very spot in your buying process could work to reinforce confidence immensely and close that purchase.
I also absolutely love brands that ask me about my experience every single time and act on it. Just letting a customer know that you heard them and will work on their specific feedback makes you look like a hero.
Obviously, something so repetitive has to be made so easy that it doesn’t even take a minute to complete. But it’s necessary nevertheless.
#2 Ask Right Questions
The next step in your review marketing strategy must be listing down questions that you would like to ask your customers.
A simple 5 star or ‘Love it!’ is not convincing enough.
And a way to avoid such candy floss reviews is to ask the right questions. Consider replacing ‘How was it?’ with ‘Did the product or service match your expectations?’ Or ‘Was our staff helpful while you were staying with us?’
If you have a physical store, ask the people to review their experience at the counter.
A good practice is to try and capture as much information about the customer as possible. A review with a face has exponentially more impact than one without.
#3 Provide Motivation to Leave a Review
If you have done all of the above and no one seems to be responding, consider incentivizing reviewing you. Amazon coupons, future discounts, gift cards, and other privileges are proven methods that work.
So, is it really that easy?
If you go for an ‘if you review us you get a coupon’ kind of messaging it loses authenticity. Consider changing the messaging to something like this։
We wanted to say thank you for buying our product XYZ.
We appreciate you choosing us.
We are reaching out today to ask if you could give us an honest review of your experience with us. That way, more people like you can find us and trust our offer.
For your effort, we would like to offer you a 20% discount on your next purchase.
Please click on this link to give us a shout out ‹link›.
#4 Influencer Marketing and Tagging
Influencers are simply god-sent when you want to reach a highly defined set of customers.
An influencer reviewing you will help you speed up that image building process and drive more people to not just try your product but also vouch for you on social media. You can start a positive feedback loop just by investing in the right influencer.
If you are worried about investing in something new, here are some influencer marketing related statistics to help you along.
If you are sharing testimonials on social media, an absolute must do is to tag the customers who review you. You will be surprised by how many people are excited to be tagged by a brand they love!
#5 Identify Campaigners
If your clientele is B2B you are probably looking to develop long term relationships.
Your clients on the flip side are looking to build trustworthy relationships. If you can identify existing customers who really appreciate your services, then turn them into evangelists who can help you generate video content or detailed case studies.
This way you don’t just build a strong case for your business but also make your campaigners feel more connected to you. Take a look at some of the case studies we built with our customers who were happy to share how we helped their business grow: Convirza Customer Success
#6 Use Testimonials to Increase CTR
Putting a review on your website or social media is a fantastic way to build a reputation.
But is it enough to generate instant leads?
When you use testimonials in advertising or in your emails, make sure to combine them with a call to action. It could be a ‘read more’ or ‘leave your review’ button.
Keeping your audience engaged for longer means a higher chance of conversion. And with testimonials you let someone else speak for you while taking away the ’oh’ so boring’ sales pitch.
#7 Manage Negative Reviews
It’s not all rainbows and butterflies in the reviewing arena. People can be unpleasant in a world where trolling is a trend. Be ready to deal with such customers.
Have a highly responsive team that is adept at resolving issues and calming down angry customers. When people see you respond to everything out there it gives them a sense of security in dealing with your brand.
In the good old days, word of mouth was the most powerful marketing tool. The same idea, albeit boundary-less, is now online customer reviews and it will decide your reputation in the market. You cannot control what people say about you but you can influence it. Take the right steps today to ensure that your brand has the reputation you want it to have.