The world of marketing is changing and consumers are much more empowered now than ever before. Your potential customers are doing their research before they decide to do business with you, or decide not to. While it may to scary to accept, not everything they read about you is actually produced and shared by you. Your current customers are out there talking about you too!
According to a new survey conducted by Dimensional Research, an astonishing 90 percent of respondents who remembered reading online reviews claimed that positive online reviews influenced buying decisions, and a still-huge 86 percent said buying decisions were influenced by negative online reviews. So, yes- social media reviews are a big deal.
They’re Personal Endorsements
For nearly 9 in 10 consumers, an online review is equally as important as a personal recommendation. In the case of social media, potential customers are seeing these first-hand reviews from people they actually know. With word-of-mouth still the most popular way of recommending a local business, social media is just another avenue to go about doing this.
Young People Trust Social Media
Even if the review comes from someone they don’t know personally, young people, especially millennials trust online reviews unlike any of generation before them. This type of review, also referred to a User Generated Content, is a type of media that they are surrounded by in their digital world constantly. For that reason, they trust these reviews just as much as a review written by a professional, such as a restaurant critic in the newspaper.
Quantity AND Quality are Important
However, this trust isn’t automatic. Respondents to the surveys gave almost a 50/50 split in what drives trust for their trust of social media reviews. For one half, this trust will only be granted if there are multiple reviews to read. One positive review just doesn’t cut it. For the other half, however, their trust is dependent on the reviews reading authentic. For these reasons, quality is equally as important as quantity. Both of these go a long way in proving the authenticity of the reviews, since no one wants to be duped by a fake review written by the owner of the business.
Clearly, people are out there trying to find out about your brand and what to do what others have to say about you. This is good news for companies who adhere to the inbound marketing methodology and regularly delight their customers. If you’d like to learn more about how inbound marketing can work for your small business, download our free eBook The Beginner’s Guide to Inbound Marketing today and get started!