Friday 07 February, 2014

The Power of Product Reviews and How NOT to Do Them Totally Wrong

If you’re shopping online, where would you rather get information – the company’s official website or a review site where customers are talking? The answer for most is the latter. There is a lot of information on every type of product online. People are increasingly looking for real product reviews to help them decide what to buy.

However, many marketers shoot themselves in the foot by producing lousy product reviews that don’t help the customer make their decision.

How to Write Terrible Product Reviews

In the past, marketers have written fake reviews and testimonials, either pretending to be a customer themselves or hiring a writer to do it for them. This is unethical and ineffective. It can also get you into a heap of trouble. The Federal Trade Commission is going after companies that do this and Amazon and other sites are cracking down.

The truth is that if your product stinks so badly that you need to write fake reviews, you should be promoting something else.

Other times, a marketer will cobble together information from other reviews to create something ‘original.’ You can do this without misrepresenting yourself so that it’s completely ethical and legal. The only problem is that it’s not truly original and it lacks the personal touch good product reviews have.

Real reviews are worth much more weight and they’re not hard to get.

Getting Real Reviews for Your Products

Most of the time, you can get perfectly good real reviews by simply giving away free samples and asking for feedback. Ask customers to write their honest opinions. What you’ll get in return are positive reviews that you can use, and negative reviews that will give you some valuable feedback. They may point out the weaknesses of your product or the ways it falls short of expectations, and you can then make improvements. Of course, these don’t have to be published.

You can hire a writer to write professional product reviews for you, but give them the actual product. The review will be informed, real and original. The writer will know the product like nobody else does. They’ll highlight the features they like best rather than copying information from other reviews. It makes a world of difference. If you’re selling digital products, this is easy and free to do – just give them a secure download link.

The Good and the Bad

Product reviews that only mention the positives of the product don’t tell customers what they need to know. Customers need to know not just whether or not the product is high quality, but also whether it’s for them; in other words, it’s specifically what they’re looking for. Your review should tell them everything they need to know in order to decide this, and this includes the product’s disadvantages.

When writing product reviews, the aim should be to serve the customer, not just to promote their product. Give them the information they’re looking for so that they can make the right purchasing decision, and this will boost your reputation and lower your refund rate.

Bob Steele

Bob Steele is an entrepreneur, software developer, marketer, and author living in the Denver metropolitan area. He’s an avid outdoorsman who loves skiing, hiking, fishing, boating, and just plain having fun. His interests include games, space, technology, physics, cooking (well eating actually), economics, business, internationalism, and team sports. With over thirty years of professional consulting experience, Bob has been exposed to many diverse business models and has gained a sensible approach to life. Bob’s company, WaveCentric is focused on commerce, marketing, and entertainment related products.

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