The Importance Of Reviews In Your Marketing
What a customer says about a business is 100 times more powerful than what a business says about themselves. Good or bad, there is nowhere more true than online reviews.
They’re not just being typed up and disappearing into the Internet void, they can be there forever. Especially since screenshotting became a thing, and people have started to rely on them more and more. With the rise of social media and a flurry of free review sites, it’s hard for business owners to keep control – everyone has a voice!
97% of shoppers say that reviews influence their buying decisions [Source: Fan and Fuel]. That means that they trust what others have said, they would rather hear from previous customers than the business on why this product/service is worth purchasing. Which is exactly why companies have started to use statistics in their marketing efforts; “87% of women said their skin felt smoother after just two weeks!” etc…
So, how about some more statistics to sink your teeth into?
– 72% of customers don’t take action until they have read reviews [Source: Testimonial Engine]
– Seven out of ten consumers changed their opinion about a brand after the company responded to a review [Source: Marketing Charts]
– 84% of people trust reviews they read online as much as personal recommendations [Source: Bright Local]
It’s pretty clear from these stats just how much faith people have in the accuracy of online reviews. They also highlight the importance of responding to these reviews, good or bad… As well as being positive, reviews need to be fresh. The more recent the review the better, because prospective customers can see you’re still in business and providing excellent service right now. You might have done something amazing three years ago, but a lot can change in three years.
Genuine is everything
Online reviews need to be plentiful, positive and recent, but one factor beats them all: reviews must be genuine! The easier you can make it for potential customers to trust your reviews, the better.
Businesses should be using accredited reviews, where the testimonial has been confirmed by the customer before being shared to the general public. This is why Facebook business pages are so influential. People can only leave a review if they are a Facebook user. The comments they leave are accountable and traceable to that person’s profile. Plus, Facebook is pretty savvy about spotting fake profiles.
You’re still going to get business owners who make up their own reviews and upload them to their website. I’m all for a bit of self-promotion, but the likelihood is that false reviews will come back to haunt them.
Video testimonials are where it’s at – interactive and personal.
Although written testimonials are important, they can be faked. But, you can’t fake a person in front of a camera! People like to see a human face, it’s so much easier to relate to them emotionally.
Video engagement is high, people will watch a video because they’re curious. Even if they don’t watch the whole thing, you’ve already made a memorable impact on them. Video has a 95% retention rate whereas people only remember 12% of text [Source: UScreen.tv] so you’ve already made an impression.
The biggest value of video testimonials is that at the moment, they’re not that common – especially creative ones. Right now, a video testimonial is guaranteed to make you stand out from the crowd and make your messages more memorable.
Take a video on your phone (if you need any help with that, have a read of our top tips for filming on mobile), upload it to YouTube, or Facebook directly and paste in a link to your website.
Getting those reviews in front of people
Once you’ve got your mix of textual and video reviews, you need to get them out there. There’s no point having a Ferrari if you’re going to keep it in the garage…
Reviews are the most important fuel you have in proactively driving the promotion of your business.
The first step is making it easy for your customers to leave you reviews. Do they know there’s an option on Facebook to do so? Maybe after a purchase, you add in a link to your Google My Business page? How about a link at the bottom of your email signature?
After you’ve published your reviews on your website or somewhere else credible, share them! Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, wherever!
Here at Codebreak, we believe that verified written reviews and videos are an integral part of any business’s marketing strategy. If you’d like to discuss how we can generate and use reviews to market your business, get in touch. You can be old school and give us a ring on 01743 491356 or drop us a message.
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