In this article, you'll learn:
- What makes an effective review
- The right questions that draw these reviews out of your past clients
- What to do when you get these reviews
- The exact email templates to send out to get your brand maximum exposure
Let's get into it.
Why quality reviews matter
If you have dozens of reviews on Google, and your competitor has dozens of reviews on Google, there's no differentiating yourself.
You need a strategy that will make you stand out.
That's part of what marketing is: It's making an association in the consumer's mind that helps you stand out so when they think of you, they think of someone who could help solve their problems and achieve their goals.
For example, when a company is great at marketing, you instantly think of the association.
Volvo = Safety
Patagonia = High-quality
Zappos = Service
Great marketing makes an association in your mind. One of the best ways to do that is through leveraging reviews.
But not all reviews are strong reviews.
Here's an example of a weak review: I used Jimmy as my agent. He was amazing. I loved him. Highly recommend him.
If I was a prospect and evaluating whether or not to hire you, that review told me nothing.
It's better than not having any reviews – but it told me nothing.
As marketers, it's our job to draw these reviews out of our customers and have them communicated in a way that's going to persuade potential prospects to do business with us.
Here's how we do it.
Ask the right questions
When you ask your past clients better questions about their experience, you can develop better customer success stories.
Here are a few questions to get you started:
What was the moment when you decided "It's time to sell?"
What did you do next?
What was your biggest fear during the process?
What surprised you about the process?
What did you learn?
Would you do anything differently?
What advice do you have for someone who's like you?
Here's what we're trying to do: We're trying to gain insight into a specific moment in their process that we can speak to in our future marketing campaigns.
Arguably the most important question is the last one: What advice do you have for someone who's like you?
What advice do you have for someone who is downsizing?
What advice do you have for someone who's moving to the North End and has been living in the suburbs for 7 years?
What advice do you have for someone who is buying and selling at the exact same time?
Why is this important?
Because when you create a piece of content with their answers, you're communicating to your prospective clients: "I've worked with people who are just like you."
Create your success story
People connect with stories that look like their own.
If a prospect reads a client success story that aligns with their own story, they feel a stronger connection to your brand because you've worked with people like them.
Let's look at an example.
The story starts with a personal introduction to the Schneider family:
The rest of the page outlines the Schneider family's journey and the emotions they experienced through buying and selling their home. It's neatly designed with professional photography, clear questions, and key quotes.
Perhaps the most powerful part of the story is near the end where the Schneider family answers the question, "Your top tip for others buying and selling at the same time?"
Their answer drives the point home: If you're buying and selling at the same time, Oyler Hines can help you like they helped us.
If you have the resources and a client who's willing to be filmed, go for it. Video captures the emotion, inflection, and sincerity from your clients that can't always be replicated the same way on a blog post.
By simply asking those questions, you can now build out comprehensive, incredibly valuable stories that exist on your website.
Turn your happy customer into an advocate
Once you create a client success story and want your client to promote the story, send this email:
Why this works: You're turning your happy customer into an advocate.
This is how you can take a review and turn it into more referrals from your past clients and their sphere.
As much as you can communicate, "I'm great at what I do" to new prospects, if they hear that from someone they trust, love, and respect, the impact of that statement is 10X.
Blast the success story to your database
After you send the first email to your happy customers, send this email to your database:
Why this works: You're using storytelling to share positive customer reviews that initiate more engagement with potential customers.
Don't wait for people to discover your happy customers on Zillow.
Instead, market your marketing.
1. Draw effective reviews out of your clients by asking strategic questions.
2. Use their answers to create evergreen content on your website.
3. Turn your happy customers into advocates.
4. Blast your success stories to your database.
Repeat this process every time you want to generate more reviews that create empathy and attract new clients.