How to Inspire Customer Reviews

Ginny Grimsley, Feb 7, 2022 8:30:00 AM

Positive customer reviews = social proof = more customers. We know that’s how it works because we all look for reviews when we’re thinking about buying something (+ statistics back it up). 

So, how do we inspire our customers to write reviews? First, be a business that serves the needs of people with what you do. Be a good egg. If your response to that is a resounding “CHECK!,” here’s a list of things to do next (in order).

  1. Create a process for asking for reviews for your team
  2. Reduce friction: make it easy. 
  3. Seize moments of customer success
  4. Start with a conversation
  5. Choose the right time to ask
  6. Ask in person
  7. Be clear about the time it will take

Let’s get into a little more detail, shall we? Click on the links in the list above to take you to that section. Or, read them all the way through. Either way: Enjoy!

A graphic design of a group of people sitting together writing customer reviews on laptops.

Create a process for your team

Did you know: 50 or more reviews can increase conversion rates by 4.6%. That’s what it means when you have a flywheel that’s spinning beautifully, fueled by happy customers who wave other people in. 

To get that ball rolling, create a process for your team to help them ask for (and get!) reviews. Here are some ideas for that: 

  • Identify what a successful customer looks like for your business, and train your team to ask for reviews when they see it.
  • Put review requests into your marketing and service automations.
  • Use your Net Promoter Score to identify customers who love your brand and ask your service team to foster relationships with them.

Be consistent with whatever process you create, and you’re well on your way. 

Reduce friction

If writing a review for your business is difficult, even customers who are evangelists for your brand will be hard-pressed to do it. Instead, make it easy even before you ask. 

Here are some ideas for making writing a review for you as delightful as being your customer: 

  • Allow for multiple review options so that your customers can choose the platform they're most comfortable with. 
  • Link directly to the page where they’ll write the review to reduce clicks and distractions. 
  • Be specific in your open-ended prompt so they’re reminded about what to write: (i.e. “Will you tell us about your experience with our [specific product/service] today?”

Seize moments of customer success

A person sitting on a sofa with their feet up looking at a mobile phone with a quote from Growth Marketing Firm about customer reviews.

When you’ve created a big breakthrough for a client or received praise from a customer, you've stumbled upon customer happiness. 

That’s a point we all want to reach in our business. And your customers love it, too. 

Now would be the perfect moment to ask if they’d be willing to share that news with the world through a review that would help you delight other people, too. Ask. 

Start with a conversation

But, the direct ask can be hard on both parties–especially if you’re not sure your customer has had a review-worthy experience. Instead, use an open-ended question to start a conversation about how they feel about your business and their experience with it. 

Open-ended questions usually begin with the word who, what, when, where, or how. Starting questions with these words–and asking the question with genuine curiosity–can inspire a conversation with your customer that leads to not just a review, but a *great* review. 

Adapting sentences like these and using them in conversations with customers and clients in the appropriate place in their customer journey can help you determine if their ready to write a review: 

  • How was your experience in the store today?
  • Where did you find the most help on our website?
  • When did you gain the most value from our service?
  • What was your favorite thing about working with us on this project?
  • Who helped you find this today?

If the answer to “how are you liking the new product” is overwhelmingly positive, you just have to say: “Would you be willing to write that in a review? Words like that make a big difference to us!” 

Choose the right time to ask

For best results, ask a customer to review your business at the right time on their customer journey. Here are just a few signs that your customer is happy enough to leave a review of your business:

  • After they experience your product or service (timelines will vary).
  • When they re-order, re-subscribe, upgrade, add services, etc. 
  • If they sent you a customer through a referral
  • When they tag your brand in a positive social media post
  • If they often browse your website for other products or services (how do you know? Ask us about HubSpot, friends! We can help you out with that).

Ask in person

If your role is to build and maintain close communications with customers or clients, don’t be afraid to ask for a review in person. After all, the worst thing they can say is no, and statistics show that’s not likely. 68% of customers asked to write a review give a resounding YES. 

So, ask them. Out loud. Make it conversational, but feel confident in the ask.  

What would you say if your favorite brand asked you to speak for them and help them build their business so that it stays around? Yep. 

Pro Tip: Use HubSpot CRM to easily build a database that keeps track of the information you gather from your conversations with your customers. When you talk with them, it helps to remember what you spoke about last time, and you need a tool that allows you to search that info quickly and access it instantly. HubSpot was built for just that very thing. 

Be clear about the time it will take

The biggest point of friction for everyone is time. But, when we know how long something is going to take, we can set aside focused time to do something we care about–and that makes us that much more likely to follow through. 

The more specific, the better. If it takes 2.3 minutes, tell them that. 

For open-ended reviews, tell them how long it should take. 

Growth is in the business of helping companies build strong relationships with their customers and clients so that everyone…well, GROWS! Check out our clients and what they love about us, here

If you’re interested in learning new ways to grow your customer’s success, book a meeting to talk with regular humans (good eggs) here at Growth. We’re right here.

Learn more about Discovery + Strategy with Growth Marketing Firm

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