Ask for reviews

Dec 19, 2014 | Business

Recently, we upgraded our family truckster to a brand new Subaru Outback (we love it). Before that wonderful new car smell could wear off, the dealer did something really smart. They sent us a postcard asking us to rate them on Google:

20141216_184809687_iOSI was very happy with my experience, so I gave them a 5-star review. It was easy for me, and it will slightly increase the odds that the next person searching Google for “Subaru dealer” in my area will call them instead of one of their competitors.

Reviews are more and more important as customers turn to the web to find service providers. I talked to one customer who said the majority of their new business comes from Angie’s List, so you better believe they spend a lot of time making sure their customers are happy and post good reviews for them. It’s a virtuous cycle.

Houzz is another important place that homeowners go to find you. Houzz even has a section devoted to countertops:

HouzzWhy not start asking your customers to review your business on Houzz? You could send them a postcard similar to the one my dealership sent me – although to make it better, take the opportunity to THANK your customer as well … perhaps write a personal note asking them to call if they have any issues or write a review if they don’t.

Here’s what comes up for Tile, Stone & Countertops providers in my zip code:

Houzz Reviews

The companies with reviews (green arrows) show up first. The companies with no reviews (red arrows) show up next. If I were looking for a countertop, this is where I’d go.* Who do you think I’m going to call first, the company with zero reviews or the one with eleven? Perhaps you say, “yeah, but I don’t get any business from Houzz” … maybe it’s because you haven’t bothered to ask anybody for ratings! Marketing involves experimenting and then doubling down on the experiments that work. Consider this experiment if you haven’t already: ASK FOR REVIEWS.

Listen to my StoneTalk interview with Liz Tambasco for more ideas like this.

Has this approach worked or failed for you? Have similar or better ideas? Please share in the comments below!

*In reality, I’d call Dave Paxton or Blasius, but that’s only because I know them from this job. If I didn’t work at Moraware, I would go definitely use Houzz to find my countertop shop.