There’s a lot of rhetoric on the Internet concerning what the best way to market your business is online. Additionally, there are many people talking about more straight forward techniques for marketing like email campaigns, text campaigns, and so on. But people tend to react poorly to direct methods sometimes. Internet users are so used to heavy handed marketing techniques that a lot of them are ignoring such techniques altogether and looking for reviews instead. This is why a smart marketer will learn how to use customer reviews as marketing.

The Power of Reviews

The fact of the matter is that reviews are how people on the Internet make decisions about what to buy. And generally they can spot fake reviews from a mile away. This is because if you just pay people to write fake reviews, they will be as saccharine as possible, which often comes across as extremely insincere. Generally people will look for the amount of stars right around 4.5, because this means that it has the highest rating average in order to still have a possibility of remaining non-fake. No product or service I’ll have a completely broken block of 5 star ratings after all. There will always be someone complaining about something.

Free Stuff

One way to entice real customers to actually respond to your product or service on various review sites online is by giving them free stuff if they do. This can be something that doesn’t really cost you anything like a free quote, or a free recommendation, or a free mention in a newsletter. But the point is that people love free stuff and if you can make anything seem like it’s free and extra then customers will be much more likely to review your service.

Choosing Your Site

You can do this either through online sites like Yelp or Local.com, or you can setup your own reviews on your own site in their own special section. There are obviously different pros and cons to each approach. If you do the approach where you set up customer reviews on your own site then you will have higher conversion rates. Basically, it will be unlikely that this will earn you anymore hits since people have to already be at your site to see the reviews. But if they see the reviews while they are at your site then the will be much more likely to actually purchase your goods or services after reading the reviews.

On the other hand, if you get reviews on other major sites then this will generate hits a lot more. As a result you’ll be more likely to get people coming to your site who you’ve “pre-sold” the service that is those who are open to buying as soon as they get to your site. Yodle Reviews is a site that shows this principle, as you can look through it and discover the power of customer reviews to change a potential customer’s mind about what service he should go with to market his product.

This is a guest post by Jeremie Brenton, part-time freelance writer and blogger who shares his online marketing and business tips on various blogs.