How to Leverage Reviews and Testimonials
Too many marketing teams are leaving money on the table.
There are many ways this happens, but one of the most common and easy-to-resolve issues is forgetting to leverage consumer reviews and testimonials.
Reviews and testimonials help potential customers get comfortable with the idea of buying from you. Reviews and testimonials can also help leads become brand ambassadors, convert more easily and spend more money.
Online reviews and testimonials should be an essential component of your overall marketing and sales funnel. If you aren’t actively cultivating and leveraging positive reviews and testimonials, you could be inadvertently limiting every aspect of your sales funnel.
Do Reviews and Testimonials Really Matter?
Let’s let the numbers do the talking here.
92% of B2B buyers are more likely to purchase after reading a trusted review
Displaying reviews can increase conversion rates by 270%
Displaying reviews for higher-priced products can increase conversion rates by 380%
Reviews produce an 18% increase in sales
Customers spend 31% more when a business has positive reviews
Still not convinced?
Take off your marketing hat and think about the last time you, hired a contractor or bought a big-ticket item for your home or business. You likely did your homework, which included searching for a review or two.
Reviews and testimonials are certainly important for B2C organizations and even more important for B2B companies.
The majority of B2B purchases are significant transactions. It’s likely that the decision maker needs approval or buy-in from others in the organization. And even if they don’t, they still do their research because their reputation is on the line.
Why Are Reviews and Testimonials Effective?
Increased lead volume. Consumers tend to pay more attention to businesses with a good amount of positive chatter. It’s a social cue that whispers, “this brand is legit; give it a try.”
Decreased lead cost. Because good reviews increase customer trust, clickthrough rates increase, the sales cycle becomes shortened and – voila! -cost of conversion decreases.
Improved conversion rates. The better the reviews, the more likely consumers are to give your brand a chance. And the easier the conversion becomes. It’s that simple.
Decreased impact of negative reviews. Bad reviews are no fun and they are almost inevitable. However, a significant strategic presence of positive reviews can offset the impact of any bad reviews and protect your business and marketing funnel.
Where to Begin
Gather reviews and testimonials
Gather existing reviews. Perhaps you have tried this strategy before. Think back to testimonials that might be buried deep in your website. Look through your emails for great feedback you received from a client or a customer. Polish them off and get them ready to get back to work.
Request testimonials from existing customers. Most of your current customers are probably more than happy to leave you a good review or testimonial. There are several ways to do this depending on your business model. You can add a review request link at the bottom of your newsletter emails and send a few personalized emails to your best clients. Consider pairing this with an incentive if you don’t get the reaction you hoped for.
Check in with new customers. Once customers have had a chance to become familiar with your product or service, send them an email to check in. If they seem like satisfied customers, follow up with a request for feedback.
Involve the entire organization. Depending on your business model, you know where to look. Maybe it’s customer support. Involve them in this testimonials-gathering initiative. Whenever anyone feels like they have delighted a customer, empower them to ask for a review.
Put Those Reviews and Testimonials to Work
So now, you’ve gathered all of these gleaming reviews of your business. Where do we go from here?
The short answer is: anywhere and everywhere you think it will make a difference. Here are some suggestions:
feature testimonials on a sidebar on your blog to add legitimacy to your brand when you’re offering free content
post reviews on your landing page
incorporate reviews and testimonials into case studies that showcase the value and business solutions that your business provides
the usual suspects, of course, like email drip campaigns, newsletters, social media, etc.
The beauty of this strategy is that, even if one approach doesn’t deliver, you can always try another. Reviews and testimonials are powerful – and too often underutilized – tools
for turning prospects into paying customers.