Biz Talk
Past Issues:

Let Customers Talk Behind Your Back

social_iconsWhen customers talk about your products or services it can be very, very good for your business or, unfortunately, very, very bad. In fact, 72% of the population is motivated to write a poor review of a product or service if they’ve had a bad customer experience. Ouch. That’s almost three-quarters!

And good and bad word travels fast with today’s many choices of social media and within seconds, the word is out about a customer’s satisfaction or disappointment (as well as online review pages). Product recommendations from family and friends have the most impact, those from celebrities the least. And in many instances, those social media messages are from family and friends!

What kind of good and bad news is shared?

  • Good news could be about a new product you’ve launched, a special deal you’re offering, services that solve a specific problem, a unique opportunity.
  • Bad news could be about a product that doesn’t work or is unavailable, service that was lacking, coffee that was cold, unacceptable customer experience. When it comes to bad mouthing, the sky’s the limit.

You can’t tell customers what to say about you, but you can leverage what, where, why and how they say it. Here are some tips:

What they say

  • Provide an unforgettable experience or a deal that’s really worth it. And stand by your word about guarantees and money-back offers.
  • Always put customer service first. If someone isn’t satisfied, do whatever you can to turn the situation around even when it means hiding your own feelings and emotions. Being right isn’t worth losing a customer and having them talk about it!

Why they say it

  • 57% of people just enjoy sharing their opinions and 64% like helping others make a choice. So go ahead and ask!
  • Offer a discount or free sample if they write a product review. According to recent research, 93% of people cite “a positive experience with the brand” for why they write product reviews, and 79% say they do it “to receive a free product or sample.”

Where they say it
Ask your customers for feedback by different means, and give them the link or icon to do it easily and quickly.

  • “Like” on Facebook as well as Facebook comments. According to Social Media Link, Facebook is the most trusted social media platform for product/service recommendation.
  • Links to online surveys
  • A review or comment page on your website
  • Invites to pass on product recommendations on Twitter

How they say it
When you ask for feedback, be specific and clear so you can pass the word along:

  • Were you pleased with the service you received?
  • What do you like most about the product you bought?
  • Would you recommend us to a friend (and provide a form to do so)
  • Rate our service 1 to 5, with five being the best

Online consumer reviews are already the second most trusted source of brand information and messaging, with 70% of global consumers indicating they trust online reviews, an increase of 15 percent in four years.
Reference: Social Media Link, 2nd edition of survey conducted through October to November 2014