When you look up a new business or service and decide to use their service or product, most likely you spend all of 10 seconds absorbing information on a site like Google, Yelp or Facebook and then know which one you like.
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As businesses, this means we are left to perfect that 10 second moment or we’ve already lost so many opportunities. While word of mouth still remains the most dependable source of new business for most of us, gaining new customers by creating an excellent digital introduction to our business is essential. Key to that success is reviews.
No matter your industry, positive reviews typically don’t come naturally. It’s human nature to react when we’re annoyed but move on – albeit pleasantly surprised – when we are feeling appreciative. Rare is the customer who feels delighted and then proactively leaves a review.
This is why you need to ask.
Get ways to ask for reviews for your business and an example of a business doing this well. You can swipe their email idea for yourself.
Following are 3 ways to proactively get more reviews from your clients.
- Add a link to your email signature: Once you’ve claimed your Google Business page and are on top of your social media reviews and comments, go ahead and add links to these pages in your email signature. Here are instructions to find your direct link on Google. Find it on Facebook (at right) by going to your page and clicking on “Reviews” in the left bar.
- Make a habit of reaching out to customers when they leave your business: This is what Boundless Adventures did. Once a client leaves your business, you can follow up with an email or a text thanking them for their business and asking them to take a minute to leave an HONEST review. If you’re going to do this, don’t ask them directly for a 5-star review because that’s not authentic. You also don’t want to ask them for a review while they are still on your premises because Google can see where your reviewers are, and this will be suspicious. (Creepy, I know.) Google has been known to remove suspicious reviews.
- Use a service like Get More Reviews: There are a lot of companies that will automate the process above for you at a reasonable price. You will need to add emails and cell phone numbers into the dashboard, and then the review service will reach out to them on your behalf. What I like about this service is that you’re more likely to keep up with the reviews because it’s simpler and you’re more committed by paying for it. It also offers recipients the option to write their ANGRY ALL CAPS RANT to you in a private message rather than on a public review. Many times, they will actually choose this because the goal of a negative reviewer is often just to get the owners’ attention. You’ll also be able to track a lot of reviews in one place if you own multiple locations of your business.
Gathering testimonials for a new business
One challenge for new businesses is that you don’t have past clients to ask for reviews. But you need reviews for testimonials on your website for credibility. One way to do this is to let people use your product or service when it’s still in the beta stage and then ask them for reviews. You can even give them a discount or free service in exchange for an honest review.
If you worked in a similar industry or different job in a similar space, you can ask your past clients or colleagues to give you a testimonial by sending out a survey. You can swipe mine here to use for your own business.
Most importantly, keep doing the good business practices you started out to accomplish, and let the 5-star reviews pour in.
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