In this digital age, customer reviews can make or break your business. Invest in initiatives that result in an abundance of customer reviews that appear in all the places a prospective customer will research your company and its products.
Believe it or not, each good review you earn can trigger multiple new sales and customers. A 2018 study shows that:
84 percent of people trust online reviews as much as they do recommendations from their friends.
Overall, 86 percent of people consult online reviews before making a purchase. (In the 18-34 age group, this number jumped to 95 percent.)
Potential customers read about 10 reviews before taking the plunge.
Start by Earning Glowing Customer Reviews
Even customers who have a stellar experience with your company are unlikely to be compelled to take the time to sing your praises online. That doesn’t mean you’re out of luck. With a little nudge and the right incentives, they’ll find the time to spare.
How to Leverage the Magic of Customer Reviews
#1. Enable Customer Reviews on Your Website
Your website is prime real estate for rave reviews. By pairing your products with real-time, honest reviews from the people who know them best (your customers), you can gain the confidence of prospective buyers right where they are. No research needed! Follow up on purchases via email encouraging recent buyers to review their new item. Not only will this rack up reviews, you’ll also be able to gauge customer satisfaction and intervene if an experience was not to the standard you promise.
#2. Transform Customer Reviews into Blog Posts
If you receive a particularly compelling review, reach out to that customer and ask them if they’d like to be featured in a user story for your blog. Ask them to hop on a 15-minute call and share a little more about their experience with your company, products, and services. Sweeten the deal by offering them a gift card and see if they’ll bolster their review with some photos that will bring their story to life.
#3. Add Testimonials to Your Marketing Emails
The reviews you gain aren’t exclusive to the channel where they are first published. Take lines and phrases from customer testimonials and pop them into your marketing emails to give your promotions extra appeal.
#4. Show Off Top Earners from Your Rewards Program
Contact loyalty program members who’ve racked up the most points and have a history of cashing in on them. Ask them if they’d like to be featured as a top earner on your website and promotions. Encourage them to give their take on why your loyalty program is worth joining, their favorite reward points purchases or deals, and the overall member experience.
#5. Give Specific Examples of How Your Content Helps
Conclude your how-to and best practices blog posts, whitepapers, and other content collateral by inviting readers to share how they put your content into practice via email or social media. Once you receive this valuable feedback, update your content marketing promotions with testimonials that show what’s possible when someone tunes into your content.
#6. Display Your Products IRL (In Real Life)
Empower customers to show and tell their experience by enabling them to upload photos to their product reviews. That way, you can display a photo feed beneath specific products that show those items in the homes of your customers. Given the professional-quality filters that accompany smartphone photo apps and photo-sharing apps like Instagram, your customers’ photos will likely look just as great at home as they do on your website.
#7. Pop Up on Your Customers’ Social Media Feeds
Launch a social media contest asking customers to share how they engage with your products on their social media feeds, and tell them to enter by tagging your company’s Facebook page. This practice will populate your feed with user-generated content and easily enable you to track submissions. And best of all, every entry means that your product will be promoted to every follower in that person’s network. Win-win!
#8. Climb to the Top of Customer Review Websites
Give your most loyal customers a new way to earn rewards. Entice your loyalty program members to become your most powerful advocates by incentivizing them to leave reviews. Offer them gift cards, rewards points, or exclusive discounts in exchange for them leaving a review on a website that ranks companies in your industry. The key to making this initiative a success? Provide them with clear steps on where to leave a review, along with a point of contact at your company to notify you when it’s published so you can follow up with the reward you promised in a timely manner.