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Asking for reviews is tough. Giving one-star reviews in WordPress has become a joke. So how do you get reviews that actually help your business? In this episode, Bridget and Jason chat with Chris Badgett of LifterLMS. You won’t want to miss this one.

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How do you ask for a review?

Make it easy for them to leave a review.

“Can you do us a solid?” is the email subject line that has been most effective for Chris. They’re happy to reciprocate if you have given them value.

Though Chris doesn’t see himself as a salesman, he has learned to do this well. Asking for the sale is something that doesn’t come naturally to Chris Badgett. He had to learn how do to it. He sends emails once a quarter, posts on social media and even in a Facebook Group.

“I’m not actually a natural sales and marketing person.” Chris Badgett

He also uses Google Forms to collect reviews from non-website admins. He then publishes those on the website.

You have to ask for the review. It’s not going to happen by magic.

Can you use a logo as a review?

Yes. Chris asks for logos to use for social proof on the website.

What isn’t a review?

Sometimes people try to use a review as a feature request or to get something for free. Take the feedback and store it in your product roadmap. It’s content that should inspire better documentation and content marketing.

How should I deal with negative reviews?

People are different, by nature. Your users aren’t you. You’re not your users. There are world views, cultures, and personality types. You have to have thick skin.

“Be okay. No matter what, you’re going to have some tough reviews.” Chris Badgett

The Review Should be Natural

Social proof is important but you don’t need lots of testimonials. Be human. Automate some of your outreach; remember, it needs to be natural.

“Good SEO kind of happens naturally; so does good reviews and word of mouth.”  Chris Badgett

Don’t ask for five-stars. Ask for an honest review. Chris emphasizes asking for a positive, negative, or neutral review.

Would you do us a solid?

Can you take two minutes to write a couple of sentences? We’d love your positive, negative, or neutral review of our product. 

Thank you.

Don’t Be Afraid to Reevaluate the Ask

He used to have a drip campaign that was too aggressive in the onboarding and ask. Chris now recommends waiting for a couple of months.

“I don’t like pissing off people. I don’t like it when open rates are declining.” Chris Badgettt

Use Reviews in Your Content Marketing

Repurposing reviews in content (text based) is really important. Especially since Google is reevaluating review schema (watch this video by John Locke), don’t rely upon the text from other sites to stay.

Chris puts some of his good reviews in the README file, Instagram, and, of course, the website. He uses Design Pickle for unlimited graphic design. Jason and Bridget love Canva.com.

“I sprinkle [reviews] around [the website] like salt and pepper.” Chris Badgett

If the review is about pricing, put it on that page. If it is about support, put it there.

Case Studies are Reviews on Steroids

Don’t go after extraordinary results, Chris says. It’s good to have a mix of case studies that show typical results. “Results may vary” is a good disclaimer, especially when income is declared.

Case studies are difficult for busy and successful people. Sometimes jumping on a 30 minute call, recording it, and having someone on your team write it is the best way to go.

Reviews — The Don’ts

Don’t put a admin notice right after the plugin is installed. We just installed it. We barely know your product. He generally waits a couple of months.

Don’t ghost write your own review. Don’t use the same language or template over and over. It will look like a template.

“A review is not the place to get into a debate.” Chris Badgett

Don’t take bad reviews too personally — especially if it is about how the free version doesn’t have premium features. Some people will be upset regardless.

“People see the world as they are; not as it is.” Chris Badgett

Be kind. This has helped LifterLMS quite a bit. The customer often returns and changes their review.

Tool or Tip of the Week

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Bridget recommends that you not talk with your mouth full — especially if you’re on a date. But seriously, she recommends walking around a physical book store. Touch books. Feel them. Get inspired.

Chris likes the Apple Pencil 2 and iPadPro to draw diagrams and journeys during webinars and courses.

Jason recommends Story Swag, a spinoff of WordSwag, that he uses for WPwatercooler graphics.

Do you have any tools or tips we should know about?

We’d love to hear from you. What are your experiences with this subject?

Tell us in the comments below.

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