28 January 2010

0 Powering Positive Reviews

If you work with an SEO company or are an aggressive online marketer, you've more than likely heard the emphasis on the importance of getting reviews. We know potential consumers use reviews to gage your business, services or products and the possibility of them using your company. We even know search engines use reviews, particularly in ranking your local business listing. But how do you go about getting reviews, and more specifically how can you make sure you get positive reviews?

The answer is simple, be strategic. Sure sending a solicitation email to your entire contact database may be the quickest and easiest way to request reviews, but it is also a sure fire method for opening your business up for less than stellar responses (no matter how great your company is there are always nae sayers) or reviews that lack substance (the classic "These guys are great!" response & nothing else).

Instead, strategically identify clients that you have very positive, long-term and/or substantive relationships with. Include any clients that you know are tech savvy or influential.

When you draft the request, don't just ask for reviews to help your websites search engine ranking. Customer don't care about that. Here are the important elements you will want to include:
  • Instructions for posting the review on specific sites (Do they need to login to the site to review, etc.)
  • Links to your company profile on the review site(s). Don't make them go searching for your profile.
  • Let them know that they are a valued customer and you appreciate their opinion. Let them know that their opinion you will help you service them better. (They need to know what is in it for them.)
  • Mention why you want the review. Specifically the importance of existing customers feedback and experiences on potential customers.
  • Thank them for their time and opinion.
  • If you are able to give an incentive such as a discount on products or services for their review, let them know it! Let them know it is for their time.
I also recommend not sending the primary request as part of an extensive list of information about the business, new news, etc. While you can always include a link and quick blurb in a newsletter, sending the request out solo will garner the attention it deserves.

Reviews are a positive tool for bringing in new business. Take the time to solicit quality reviews and you may be surprised at the results.


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