Are you looking to get more Google reviews, increase customer loyalty, and build trust with your prospects?
Well, if you want something, the fastest way to get that thing is to ask, right?
It sounds simple, but you’d be surprised how many businesses fail to ask when it comes to reviews, testimonials, and other forms of social proof from customers.
The simplicity of asking
According to social psychologist, Heidi Grant, author of Reinforcements: How to Get People to Help You, getting someone to help you requires a set of behavioral principles:
- You should ask for help, as people are generally reluctant to offer unsolicited help. They are busy with their own life and work.
- Your help request should be direct and clear, and should never sound controlling or manipulative. ‘Can you do me a favor?’ is a common question to ask, but it sounds controlling. The receiver doesn’t know what favor they are going to be asked. So, at first, be clear about it. It will increase the likelihood of getting the help you desire.
- Ask for help from those who have rejected you in the past. Research shows that people who have rejected you in the past are actually more likely to help you than other people.
- Don’t underestimate the odds that others will help us. Most people think they are good people, and they will say YES to a help request to brighten their good self-image.
The Ben Franklin effect
There is a psychological phenomenon known as the Ben Franklin effect, named after the American polymath Benjamin Franklin. It is about asking a small favor first and then asking your main favor next.
Benjamin Franklin wrote in his autobiography how he once asked a small favor from a rival politician.
“Having heard that he had in his library a certain very scarce and curious book, I wrote a note to him, expressing my desire of perusing that book and requesting he would do me the favor of lending it to me for a few days. He sent it immediately, and I returned it in about a week with another note, expressing strongly my sense of the favor. When we next met in the House, he spoke to me (which he had never done before), and with great civility; and he ever after manifested a readiness to serve me on all occasions, so that we became great friends, and our friendship continued to his death.”
The modern tripwire marketing technique has a basis on this concept. With tripwire marketing, you will first sell a low-cost small product to customers, and then sell your premium products to them. The likelihood of conversion with your premium products increases as they have already bought a low-cost small product first.
Customers fall into a consistency loop. When you ask a small favor first, the response rate to your actual favor will increase three times from asking straight out, according to the book Yes! 50 Scientifically Proven Ways to Be Persuasive by Robert Cialdini, Noah Goldstein, and Steve Martin.
Subsequently, you can get more Google Reviews for your business and increase customer loyalty using the insights from the Ben Franklin effect and Heidi Grant’s research works.
How to get more Google Reviews
Positive Google Reviews on your business page will increase trust. The more genuine ratings and reviews you have, the more people will engage with you from a business perspective.
To get more positive Google reviews you have to find out who your most satisfied customers are.
Step 1 – Survey (small favor)
Send your customers an email with a 3-question survey. It will take 1 minute to complete. It is a small favor.
There are samples of questions around the internet to find loyal customers. You can select three of them but customize them to your products or services.
For survey collecting, you could use Survey Monkey. The free version of it has 10 questions with 100 responses per survey.
After getting the responses, you will find out who is most likely to recommend your business to others and completely satisfied with you.
Step 2 – Google Review (main favor)
Now, send the most satisfied customers an email asking for Google reviews. The email should be small and creative. Use the insights I mentioned in the first part of this post.
Make the review process super easy using this tool.
Go to the search box and write your business name and address.
A direct link to the Google review box will appear.
Copy one of the short links and add it to your review asking email. If a customer clicks on the link a review box will pop up, making it easy for them to complete the review and removes the friction of asking them to do the hard work.
How to increase customer loyalty
You have already started increasing customer loyalty by asking for feedback and reviews. Frequently asking for small favors will create a good connection with loyal customers.
When you receive a small favor from customers, thank them and tell them how much you appreciate it. Ben Franklin wrote, “I returned it in about a week with another note, expressing strongly my sense of the favor.” Thanking is also an important part of this process.
Slowly you can start incentivizing the review program.
My personal experience of asking direct help
I recently started a newsletter for my Bengali readers. In that newsletter, I compile the things I have read online in the week or month.
Previously I was using MailChimp and for a simpler solution, I moved to a service called Revue. But here, they allow only 50 subscribers in their free plan. You can invite users and if they sign up, you will get 50 subscribers more space.
To get more subscriber space, I emailed my 100 something subscribers to help me get more space in my Revue account. The email was clear and direct.
41 people responded to my request and signed up with Revue, so my subscribers limit is now 2050!
This is huge for a country where email marketing is not popular. Asking for direct help, with a clear message is more effective.
So, using the Ben Franklin method, ask for a small favor from your customers. After getting the small favor, then ask them to review your business on Google. The likelihood of getting a review will increase. At the time of asking for help, be sure to keep the message precise and direct, and always be grateful for their help. It should not sound manipulative or controlling. This will increase customer loyalty, and improve your company’s relationship with customers.