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Reviews are essential for growing your business. According to a survey of 30,000 shoppers by Bazaar Voice, 89% always or mostly consult ratings and reviews before making a purchase. The majority of your customers will be searching for social proof that your business is worthy of their custom. It doesn’t just apply to online businesses either, 85% of Bazaar Voice’s respondents consult online reviews on their phones whilst shopping in store!
Reviews can come in many different formats. Using third-party sites such as TripAdvisor or Trust Pilot for added credibility, using Google Reviews so they come up during online searches, or using reviews on your selling platforms such as EBay or Amazon. There are benefits to each of these and reviews should be easily accessible to your potential customers at each stage of the customer journey.
Social media reviews
However, an area where it is not so easy to get reviews is on social media. With only Facebook offering a formal reviews system (although rumour has it TikTok is trialling a review functionality), most reviews on social media are ad-hoc and are a jumbled combination of status updates, tags, comments, replies and direct messages. This can make it hard to manage and utilise for your company’s benefit.
Embrace the messy!
Despite the difficulty however, we’d recommend you make a concerted effort to harness the power of social media reviews. Step 1 – embrace the messy! Product reviews are way more persuasive than your typical marketing campaign. Your customers want to know what to expect in terms of customer experience and are actively searching social media for clues about yours, whether you are aware of it or not!
An easy place to start if your customers are already on Facebook is to make the most of the platform’s own in-built reviews function. This is simply done by enabling reviews on the slider in the Templates and Tabs part of the settings on your business page. Once that’s done, you can start an outreach programme to encourage customers to leave reviews right there on your Facebook business page. This could be through Facebook Messenger, via email, or through a QR code linked directly to the reviews part of your Facebook page printed on your packaging.
With the other social media sites, it is a little more haphazard so being organised will help! Some ideas include:
- Post on your preferred social media site specifically asking for feedback from your customers. Offering an incentive such as an entry to a prize draw or a discount off the next purchase could help to sweeten the deal. Once the comments start rolling in, you can pin the post making it super easy for would-be customers to find your reviews.
- Make it a habit to ask for feedback on each of your product based social media posts, that should create a big bank of social proof under each of your social media posts.
- Use Instagram polls to provide a quick and easy way for your followers to share what their feeling about your products.
- Encourage user generated content by asking your customers to create image and video posts of how they use your product and what they love about your products. You can then re-share the posts on your pages as well – win-win!
Whilst making the most of social media reviews isn’t easy, its certainly worth the effort. For more information about the power of reviews, check out this episode of the Revitalise & Grow podcast – The importance of reviews.