Seven Strategies for Garnering More Reviews

Influencing your customers should be your number-one goal in trying to attain more reviews – although you should never resort to bribery. Through having great customer service and amazing products, you can be sure to create an atmosphere conducive to obtaining positive feedback. Cultivating good reviews is extremely important in the wedding business as you cannot rely on repeat business. Rather use the great experiences of past brides to boost new customer acquisition.
    Reviews are not only great for your credibility and reputation, but also can help your online visibility. Setting up a Google+ account and encouraging customers to review you there can have a very positive effect on your ranking in the local Google search results. In addition if you have more reviews than your competitors, that can inspire your company to be clicked on above any others.
    Here are seven strategies to garner more reviews:

1. Utilize e-mail marketing. If possible, e-mail customers directly asking them to review your business. By mentioning that you are trying to improve for their benefit and for the benefit of others,  your request won’t feel like spam. A great opening line could be, “We were wondering if you could spare a couple of minutes to give us a review? It would help our company greatly, and would also give us great user feedback so we can help you out in return. We are always trying to get feedback to create a better customer experience.”

2. Send out a customer service survey. One facet of e-mail marketing is the online customer service survey, although this could also be done through regular mail. If you send out an e-mail survey, include a link for customers to also give a review. Most importantly, make this seem like a fun and positive experience rather than a chore. It should be portrayed as a beneficial tool for both the company and the customer.

3. Pick up the phone. Conducting a phone survey is a great way to get in contact with the customer directly in real time. Politely ask them to take a quick, three-minute survey regarding their experience with your business. Always impress upon them that you are working to make their experience better.

4. Put your e-mail signature to work. For a more casual request, keep it simple and add a link to your e-mail signature that takes customers to a place to review your business. Ask them about their recent experience with you, inquiring about their questions or concerns. Nobody likes to be spammed into giving feedback, and this tactic feels less threatening.

5. Create an infographic. An educational and attractive infographic that outlines the steps a customer would need to take to find and provide a review can be beneficial. Provide information that walks customers through the steps such as creating a Google account or which link to click on. Keep it straightforward so the customer gets a sense that giving a review is a simple and easy task that is also rewarding. Infographics can be printed and given to a customer in person or sent through e-mail.

6. Harness the power of social media. In this age, social media is one of the most powerful tools at your disposal. Facebook, Twitter and Instagram (just to name a few) are great places to ask for reviews. Research which of your accounts generates the most traffic and customer interaction and post a simple message such as, “If you were happy with our services and want to help support our business, give us a review at this link. Thank you.”

7. Create a website review landing page. On your business’s website, create a page dedicated solely to finding all the places customers are able to provide reviews, complete with links and instructions for doing so. Make sure this page is easy to find and user friendly, as no customer is happy with a frustrating interface. Generate traffic by including a link for this website page in your e-mails and on social media. If you are an advertiser on WeddingWire, they provide a widget that creates a newsfeed to display your most current reviews.
    Remember, the key to garnering positive reviews is to give the best customer service possible. Also in order to generate these great reviews you have to ASK! After all, a great experience is an experience that customers will happily share with their family and friends.

 


Brian Lawrence is a wedding business consultant with more than 30 years of industry experience as a multi-store owner, wholesaler and writer/speaker. He is the author of “The Wedding Expert’s Guide to Sales and Marketing”, and has spoken at Wedding MBA, the National Stationery Show and Wedding Market Expo. He recently developed a resource site for wedding businesses: www.sellthebridecom. You can learn more about him at www.brianlawrence.com.

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