Written by Caroline Cox on Jun 29, 2022

Customer reviews don’t just serve as helpful feedback for your brand — they can also be repurposed in all kinds of ways for marketing online.

Here, you’ll find:

  • Why customer reviews are valuable
  • How to use customer reviews for SEO
  • Ways to use reviews to build brand awareness
  • Why negative reviews are worth addressing

Happy customers are one of the most effective marketing tools you can get. 

Their feedback doesn’t just help you adjust your sales or customer service strategy. It can also strengthen brand loyalty, convert more prospects, and power up your search engine optimization (SEO) efforts.

Data shows that 89% of consumers don’t take action until they read reviews. Knowing how to best present reviews to your target audience can help you achieve noticeable results without a high marketing cost. 

Below, we highlight a few creative ways to inject customer reviews into your marketing strategy.

customer views in google maps

When you can use the testimonials of others to speak for you, you can foster credibility in a way that’s more “show” than “tell.” (Image: Unsplash)

1. Include reviews on landing pages

It may seem obvious to use customer reviews in the products or services sections of your website. But many people ignore their value when it comes to landing pages. 

For example, you can include reviews at the bottom of landing pages so the visitor immediately sees how happy others are with your offerings. This doesn’t just increase the overall value of your website, but it also gives your SEO efforts a serious push.

To make sure customer reviews contain the necessary keywords, you may need to tweak your questions when asking for testimonials

You could ask, “What service or product did you use and what do you like best about it?” or “Which one of our branches did you visit?” Gently push the client toward describing the experience while inserting the necessary keywords.

Pro tip: Don’t paraphrase or significantly modify quotes that you’re attributing to a person or company. Shortening long sentences or taking out phrases like “um” or “you know” from verbal testimonials is fine. But you want to avoid attributing a testimonial to someone whose quote you’ve changed, even slightly. 

2. Add reviews to marketing emails

When creating emails for your next email marketing campaign, don’t hesitate to include top customer reviews when it makes sense. 

About 93% of consumers trust recommendations of friends and family over any other form of advertising. Meanwhile, nearly half (49%) of them trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations.

Sure, a lot of marketing is about showing leads the value of your company. But when you can use the testimonials of others to speak for you, you can foster credibility in a way that’s more “show” than “tell.”

Pro tip: Customer reviews are great for abandoned cart emails as well. What better way to get someone to click “buy” than through triggering their FOMO by showing them how much everyone else loved it?

3. Use customer reviews in your paid ads

Google offers the option to use information from the review section of your Google Business Profile in paid ads. Bonus: You can do it without paying extra.

By clicking the review link, the customer is redirected to the review section to learn what others are saying about your business.

To take full advantage of this feature, you need to optimize your Google Business Profile. Make sure all the information is filled out properly and the elements accurately reflect your brand. 

Once reviews appear, do your best to reply to all of them in a timely, professional manner to show customers that you care about what they have to say.

4. Implement reviews in your blog

Inserting appropriate reviews in your blog posts is another creative way to attract customers’ attention. 

After all, if a visitor comes to your website in search of information, seeing a carefully integrated review can drive them down the marketing funnel.

If you can’t insert the review in the blog post organically, you can create a dedicated review field on the side or at the bottom of the article. These reviews can also help establish your company as an industry thought leader and show that your content is trustworthy.

marketing team looking at customer reviews

Out of ideas for your next piece of content? Look at your reviews. (Image: Unsplash)

5. Place reviews next to the CTA

We put a lot of emphasis on calls to action (CTAs) around here. 

That’s because we know they’re key to getting users to take the desired next step after clicking an ad. One way to reinforce your offer when someone gets to the CTA is to leverage a review.

By showing someone else’s positive opinion about your products or services, you’re one step closer to getting that visitor to click a button or fill out a contact form. (Reviews are also an excellent way to capitalize on the clients’ herd mentality.)

Pro tip: Republishing reviews on your website is a great way to aggregate testimonials from third-party websites. This way, anyone who lands on your site has an opportunity to see what others are saying about you without having to check Google or dedicated review sites. 

6. Share reviews on social media

When people research a brand, service, or product, checking social media is often a part of that process. 

In fact, a third of customers use social media to discover new products and brands. It makes sense: You can get a feel for a company’s tone, aesthetic, values, and more by looking at their social profiles. 

One of the best ways to share reviews on social media is to harvest user-generated content (UGC). If someone publishes a tweet, post, or photo about your business and tags you, you can ask the user for permission to repost the content and credit or tag them. 

This is a cost-effective way to create content, and it shows your customers that you’re paying attention to them.

7. Turn customer reviews into success stories

Out of ideas for your next piece of content? Look at your reviews. 

They can make appealing success stories. Not only that, but they can inspire you to write about a particular industry topic you haven’t touched on before. 

You can also draw details from clients’ purchase histories and reviews to come up with a story others can relate to. This can be especially effective since studies show attaching names, faces, and job titles to testimonials can help gain readers’ trust.

8. Don’t ignore bad reviews

While you can’t exactly use negative reviews to promote your brand, it doesn’t mean you should ignore them.

Negative reviews don’t just help adjust your marketing, customer service, and sales strategies. They can also give credibility to positive reviews — 30% of consumers assume online reviews are fake if there are no negative reviews, according to Trustpilot.

Most review platforms don’t let businesses simply remove bad reviews unless they fall under guidelines like obscenity, spam, or malicious content from a competitor trying to bring your score down. (Here’s a helpful explainer for getting reviews that violate guidelines removed from Google.)

While a “screw the haters” mindset can often be useful, your reviews section isn’t the place for it. Replying to bad reviews can actually show your professionalism and willingness to solve issues. 

Plus, if a bad review stemmed from a simple misunderstanding, you can reach out to the person and ask them to amend their review once their problem has been resolved.

Pro tip: Including keywords in review responses (when it’s appropriate and makes sense) is another clever way to boost SEO efforts.

The takeaway

Customers are getting savvier by the day. They know your job is to get them to buy something. That’s why they often trust your customers’ experiences more than your brand’s own marketing. 

That’s also why it makes sense to combine them and use customer reviews in marketing.

By taking full advantage of customer reviews, you can raise brand awareness and retain existing clients.

Make it a habit to pay attention to your reviews on all possible platforms. You can leverage the positive ones to strengthen your marketing strategy, and use the negative ones as a learning experience to better your business in the future. 

This article has been updated and was originally published in August 2020.

Caroline Cox

Caroline Cox

Caroline is HawkSEM's content marketing manager. She uses her more than 10 years of professional writing and editing experience to create SEO-friendly articles, educational thought leadership pieces, and savvy social media content to help market leaders create successful digital marketing strategies. She's a fan of seltzer water, print magazines, and huskies.

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