Every small business wants glowing reviews from its customers. According to a new book, the best way to get them may be to make sure you maintain your integrity.
In “Word of Mouth Marketing: How Smart Companies Get People Talking,” author Andy Sernovitz contends that many word-of-mouth responses are based on perceptions of corporate integrity. To increase the odds that your reviews will be favorable, he offers a number of questions to help companies evaluate the ethical quality of their marketing plans and customer interactions.
Avoid all forms of shill marketing, he advises, and make sure that sales, special offers and claims are honest at face value. Advocates should disclose any relationship with the company, and compensation and incentives made public. Individuals speaking on a company’s behalf should be allowed to speak freely, and avoid customer impersonators and those not using their real identity.
And deal with problems forthrightly; negative reviews happen and dealing with them effectively can be a great way to gain loyal customers and word-of-mouth referrals.
Adapted from Ten Way to Get Positive Customer Feedback at Baseline Magazine.