As peer recommendation becomes increasingly important to B2B buying decisions, user review sites can make or break a business.
How often do you consider going to a much-hyped summer movie but change your mind when a friend shares the terrible Rotten Tomatoes reviews? According to Quartz Media, many a summer movie has proven more “bust” than “blockbuster” after negative feedback on the movie review site.
Just as Rotten Tomatoes can sink a would-be summer blockbuster, user-review websites can have a toxic effect on your business.
B2B buyers are increasingly relying on peer recommendations in the purchase process. In fact, 67% of those surveyed in Demand Gen’s 2017 B2B Buyers Survey reported that peer reviews are an important part of evaluating a list of solution providers.
Third-party user review sites as peer recommendations
Third-party user review sites function like peer reviews, particularly in the B2B space, where a buyer can’t always get a good vendor recommendation at a neighborhood dinner party. They need industry peers that have experience with these vendors to provide honest feedback.
So when someone leaves positive feedback about your business on one of these third-party sites, it’s a huge win for you. Potential buyers will see your customer’s kind words and form a positive association with your brand name. It can be the difference in winning a new customer’s business.
Dealing with negative user reviews
While your business will benefit greatly from positive reviews, it’s important to acknowledge that not all reviews will be favorable. You need a strategy for dealing with negative reviews. Here are a few tips:
1) Ignoring a bad review won’t make it go away.
Take the time to respond to criticism online, publicly if possible. Acknowledge the concerns of the reviewer, offer solutions, and invite them to contact you directly to resolve the issue. Negative reviews don’t have to be disaster — they can even be an opportunity for growth.
2) Learn from your mistakes.
This one may seem obvious, but you’d be surprised how often business don’t take negative reviews seriously, only to make the same damaging mistakes over and over again. If the reviewer has a valid concern about your product or service, take the time to address it internally.
3) Encourage more reviews.
Reviews are a way to empower your customers, and they represent vast opportunities for your business. Seek them out!
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