How to Ask for Google Reviews Without Feeling Desperate

Having stellar Google Reviews for your small biz is essential to getting new customers.

If you read our last blog post about Google Reviews you know that these reviews are often a potential client's first impression of you. So let's make sure it's a good one.

But how do you start to accumulate reviews? How do you ask a client to write something about your business that is both positive and well-written?

It's not as awkward or seemingly impossible as you might think. You can pick the tactic that best fits your brand and gets great reviews every time. Let's discuss how you broach the awkward topic of asking someone to brag about you.


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So, how do you ask a client to review you?

You have to just reach out and ask, really. But there are several tactics we recommend, and it depends on the business and the client to decide which tactic is best.

Here are our three top ways to ask clients for Google reviews:


1. Ask in an email.

Make it brief, friendly, humble. Flattery or acting too formal can be jarring when you're asking for something. It would be ideal if you're reaching out to them about good news or day-to-day business and then include your request. This way, it doesn't feel pushy or desperate.

Slip in your ask toward the end. You don't want it feel like you're only reaching out for this "big ask" when really it's not a huge deal. You can add a sort of P.S. at the end that says you'd value their review and how it can help other clients find you.

The email should feel personal. If it feels like a structured proposal or it looks like an incoming newsletter, your client may not even open it. Reaching out as an individual will make your cause something. 

Sign off with a name instead of the business. People are most likely to react well to a request that feels personal rather than one that feels staged. Again, keeping it friendly makes them want to help you out.

Include a direct link. People love being able to click to take action with minimal effort. Make it easy for them to say something nice about you and your business. Wanna know how? Here's some helpful tips

Utilize your email list. Using your email list will let you get in touch with people with whom you’ve already interacted. This way, it won't feel like an intimidating shot-in-the-dark email. If they’re on your email list or have given you their email, they’re probably on good terms with you already and would welcome you into their inbox!


2. Ask in a Facebook message.

Direct messaging is one of the fastest-growing and most effective ways to get in touch with someone and ask them to take an action.

If you have a personal connection with someone, sending a direct message on Facebook from your business account (but mentioning it’s you personally!) lets you distance yourself from feeling like you’re asking a personal favor while still leveraging your personal connection.

The message should be brief, to the point, friendly, and humble. No flattery or formal language. 

Getting a personal message feels like you’re getting personal attention, and that feels good!

 

And if you're wondering if Facebook is appropriate for business- the answer is yes! Learn more about why your biz needs to be social media proactive.

How to get Google reviews | Hoot Design Co.

3. Ask in person.

Your dream client loves talking to you and you love talking to them. That's why, if you're talking to the right client, this can be your best strategy for great reviews. When an individual agrees in person to leave you a review, they feel obligated to write you one.

Don't know who your dream client is? Check out this helpful tool in finding them ------>

You want to sound casual and friendly after establishing a good rapport. Avoid using language or body language that feels stiff.

A face-to-face conversation gives the customer a person to remember their experience by. If they liked the person, they don't want to leave a poor review because in a way they feel like they’re evaluating the individual.

If you have a brick and mortar location, consider the pros and cons of setting up an iPad to write a review in-store. Personally, I feel pressured if I have to write the review in the presence of the people or place I’m reviewing. But it could be a way to get people to leave a review then and there instead of possibly forgetting.

One potential downside is that if you haven’t established a personal relationship or good rapport with the individual you ask, it can feel pushy.


Where do we go from here?

In the next installment of this series we're going to share our secret weapon for getting a positively eloquent Google Review.

Tune in next time, friend! 



Hoot Design Co. is a marketing, branding, and design agency located in Columbia, MO. We specialize in creating a custom and comprehensive marketing strategy centered around your business's unique strengths and educating you with the tools you need from day one. From logo design to brand identity, website design and execution, and social media marketing strategies in-person and through online courseswe're focused on your business success every step of the way.


Google Reviews & Why You Need Them

Every business owner knows that having a good reputation is key. 🔑

But for a small business, positive word-of-mouth is only a drop in a very big bucket. Most potential customers will look you up before making contact. And without Google Reviews, you can't make a good first impression or any impression at all.

This is the beginning of a series of blog posts that will give you the low-down on Google Reviews. Why do you need them? How do you get them? And how do you respond to the negative ones? 

Don't worry- we'll break this down together. But before we get into the nitty gritty, let's talk about why you should even care about Google Reviews.


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Do people care about your online reviews?

The short answer- yes.

Turns out that 88% of customers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. So just because your customers are beaming about your business to their friends doesn't mean you can write online reviews off completely.

This may sound like bad news, but it's really an opportunity to make your online karma and positive as your karma IRL.

 


How do people see your reviews?

This is all to show that even the preliminary mobile search of a potential customer could all come down to the Google Reviews that surround your business.

The thing that makes online reviews so important is that potential customers immediately see your reviews in mobile and maps mode.

Mobile mode:

People don't have to search very hard to see your average customer reviews. In fact, they'll probably see it on their first search.

To demonstrate, I googled "marketing agencies Columbia, MO" on my phone. The first couple entries are paid advertisements by local businesses, but right under the ads Google does the heavy lifting for me by giving me a summary of what's nearby.

Google on your mobile phone will always sum up the top results for someone browsing a big category like 'marketing agencies.' 

And just like this, they'll see your ratings, and the ratings of other people in the same business who are close by. 

So whether you know it or not, Google Reviews is having you go head-to-head with your competition on the first search of your potential customer.

If we had poor ratings, HDco wouldn't even show up on this list because you can see that Google already filtered this list to be "within 5 miles, open now, and top rated."

And lucky for us, the review excerpt that shows up is positive! So a potential customer can already connect with an online review they might find helpful.

 A view of mobile reviews

A view of mobile reviews

 

Maps mode:

Maps mode can show up on desktop or mobile mode, so potential customers are even more likely to see your ratings in map view.

This time I searched "marketing agencies near me" and clicked on "maps" under the search bar. This mode shows the top rated businesses first and their location in relation to each other.

From this maps page that you see on the left, I could check out HDco's address and contact info.

But if I scroll down just a bit I can get a full break-down of all of the numerical ratings HDco has gotten as well as written reviews from previous clients.

So, if we had poor ratings, HDco wouldn't show up at all. And if we had negative reviews we'd make a bad first impression. 

With Google Reviews at your customer's fingertips, be sure to understand what your reviews look like and how they can affect your brand as a whole.

 Maps mode review summary

Maps mode review summary


What's the good news?

I know, right now you're thinking of chucking your computer and going off the grid. But if you're lacking reviews (or lacking positive ones) you can bounce back.

Google Reviews are important for the reputation of your brand, in real life and online. Good ratings can connect you with potential customers and spread great brand awareness that no PR stunt can top.

When you understand what first impression you're giving off, you can only get better.

 


Where do we go from here?

In the next installments of this series we're going to get real about how to get reviews and even how to respond when things get ugly.

Tune in next time, friend! 


 
 

Hoot Design Co. is a marketing, branding, and design agency located in Columbia, MO. We specialize in creating a custom and comprehensive marketing strategy centered around your business's unique strengths and educating you with the tools you need from day one. From logo design to brand identity, website design and execution, and social media marketing strategies in-person and through online courseswe're focused on your business success every step of the way.