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Unlock the Post Sale Review

Does​ ​the​ ​word​ ​​solicit​​ ​make​ ​you​ ​cringe?​ ​Since​ ​the​ ​days​ ​of​ ​the​ ​door​ ​to​ ​door​ ​salesmen, solicitation​ ​has​ ​become​ ​synonymous​ ​with​ ​an​ ​unwanted​ ​request.​ ​But​ ​soliciting​ ​a​ ​review from​ ​a​ ​happy​ ​customer​ ​does​ ​not​ ​have​ ​to​ ​be​ ​a​ ​dirty​ ​transaction.

Sure,​ ​happy​ ​customers​ ​love​ ​to​ ​refer​ ​their​ ​friends​ ​and​ ​family​ ​to​ ​services​ ​that​ ​they​ ​know they’d​ ​love​ ​and​ ​benefit​ ​from,​ ​but​ ​why​ ​limit​ ​them​ ​to​ ​the​ ​people​ ​they​ ​know?

Sharing​ ​their​ ​experience​ ​with​ ​prospective​ ​customers​ ​they​ ​don’t​ ​know​ ​can​ ​widen​ ​your​ ​net when​ ​fishing​ ​for​ ​new​ ​customers.

The​ ​way​ ​you​ ​interact​ ​with​ ​your​ ​customers​ ​after​ ​they​ ​have​ ​used​ ​your service​ ​is​ ​an​ ​incredibly​ ​personal​ ​experience.

Why​ ​would​ ​they​ ​want​ ​to​ ​receive​ ​an​ ​impersonal​ ​email​ ​from​ ​you​ ​requesting​ ​them​ ​to​ ​spend their​ ​precious​ ​time​ ​and​ ​energy​ ​writing​ ​a​ ​review​ ​for​ ​your​ ​company​ ​when​ ​there’s​ ​no apparent​ ​benefit​ ​to​ ​them?

That’s​ ​why​ ​your​ ​follow​ ​up​ ​request​ ​for​ ​a​ ​review​ ​needs​ ​a​ ​little​ ​tender​ ​love​ ​and​ ​care.​ ​A​ ​bit​ ​of personalization​ ​can​ ​go​ ​a​ ​long​ ​way.

Let’s​ ​take​ ​a​ ​look​ ​at​ ​what​ ​you​ ​should​ ​be​ ​considering​ ​when​ ​crafting​ ​a​ ​post-sale​ ​email campaign:

  • Message​ ​value,​ ​purpose,​ ​length,​ ​and​ ​clarity

  • Personality​ ​style,​ ​branding,​ ​and​ ​voice

  • Campaign​ ​timing,​ ​frequency,​ ​urgency​ ​and​ ​deliverability

  • Conversion​ ​analysis,​ ​optimization,​ ​and​ ​testing

Email​ ​Campaigns:​ ​Does​ ​a​ ​body​ ​good

In​ ​an​ ​era​ ​where​ ​we’re​ ​obsessed​ ​with​ ​our​ ​bodies,​ ​the​ ​body​ ​of​ ​your​ ​emails​ ​deserve​ ​the same​ ​attention.

Just​ ​because​ ​you’ve​ ​set​ ​up​ ​an​ ​automated​ ​email​ ​campaign​ ​for​ ​your​ ​customers​ ​after they’ve​ ​used​ ​your​ ​business,​ ​doesn’t​ ​mean​ ​you​ ​can​ ​use​ ​any​ ​old​ ​boring​ ​template​ ​and expect​ ​results.

Your​ ​messaging​ ​needs​ ​to​ ​have​ ​a​ ​clear​ ​purpose,​ ​specific​ ​directions​ ​to​ ​achieve​ ​that purpose,​ ​an​ ​appropriate​ ​length,​ ​and​ ​value.

For​ ​acquiring​ ​online​ ​reviews,​ ​the​ ​email​ ​doesn’t​ ​need​ ​to​ ​be​ ​complicated​ ​or​ ​difficult​ ​to​ ​write, but​ ​you​ ​need​ ​to​ ​consider​ ​these​ ​aspects​ ​so​ ​you’re​ ​not​ ​shooting​ ​yourself​ ​in​ ​the​ ​foot.

Find​ ​Your​ ​Purpose

In​ ​this​ ​case,​ ​the​ ​purpose​ ​is​ ​clear.

You​ ​want​ ​your​ ​customers​ ​to​ ​open​ ​the​ ​email,​ ​read​ ​the​ ​message,​ ​and​ ​move​ ​directly​ ​on​ ​to completing​ ​a​ ​positive​ ​online​ ​review​ ​for​ ​your​ ​company.​ ​This​ ​is​ ​not​ ​the​ ​time​ ​to​ ​highlight your​ ​social​ ​media​ ​channels,​ ​recent​ ​blog​ ​posts,​ ​or​ ​newest​ ​promotions.​ ​The​ ​point​ ​of​ ​this email​ ​is​ ​to​ ​get​ ​a​ ​review.​ ​That’s​ ​it.

Before​ ​crafting​ ​your​ ​emails,​ ​think​ ​about​ ​exactly​ ​what​ ​you​ ​want​ ​the​ ​customer​ ​to​ ​review. Would​ ​you​ ​like​ ​them​ ​to​ ​explain​ ​what​ ​they​ ​like​ ​about​ ​the​ ​product?​ ​Should​ ​they​ ​name​ ​the person​ ​that​ ​helped​ ​them?

Action​ ​tip:​ ​Write​ ​down​ ​a​ ​list​ ​of​ ​the​ ​things​ ​that​ ​would​ ​make​ ​the​ ​review​ ​helpful​ ​for​ ​other customers​ ​before​ ​you​ ​actually​ ​write​ ​the​ ​email.

The​ ​Art​ ​of​ ​the​ ​Prompt

Most​ ​people​ ​are​ ​not​ ​idiots,​ ​but​ ​they’re​ ​not​ ​psychic​ ​either.​ ​They​ ​can​ ​follow​ ​simple directions​ ​if​ ​you​ ​provide​ ​them.​ ​As​ ​mentioned​ ​above,​ ​you​ ​now​ ​know​ ​exactly​ ​what​ ​you’d like​ ​your​ ​most​ ​recent​ ​customer​ ​to​ ​focus​ ​on​ ​when​ ​writing​ ​their​ ​review.​ ​​​When​ ​you​ ​sit​ ​down to​ ​write​ ​the​ ​email,​ ​provide​ ​some​ ​specific​ ​prompts​ ​to​ ​include​ ​in​ ​the​ ​body.

If​ ​you​ ​do​ ​want​ ​them​ ​to​ ​name​ ​the​ ​person​ ​that​ ​helped​ ​them,​ ​include​ ​a​ ​line​ ​explicitly​ ​saying: “How​ ​was​ ​your​ ​experience​ ​with​ ​the​ ​person​ ​who​ ​helped​ ​you?​ ​Let​ ​us​ ​know who​ ​it​ ​was​ ​so​ ​we​ ​can​ ​let​ ​​them​​ ​know!”

Requesting​ ​specific​ ​details​ ​will​ ​add​ ​more​ ​value​ ​to​ ​the​ ​review​.​ ​Don’t forget​ ​to​ ​add​ ​the​ ​exact​ ​link​ ​that​ ​you​ ​want​ ​them​ ​to​ ​follow.​ ​​​When​ ​sending​ ​a​ ​customer​ ​to​ ​a 3rd​ ​party​ review​ ​site​ ​via​ ​email,​ ​remember​ ​that​ ​they’re​ ​leaving​ ​your​ ​sphere​ ​of​ ​influence​ ​If there​ ​are​ ​specific​ ​instructions​ ​on​ ​how​ ​to​ ​use​ ​a​ ​specific​ ​review​ ​site,​ ​include​ ​them​ ​in​ ​your prompt.

Concise and Clear

We​ ​know​ ​that​ ​we​ ​struggle​ ​sometimes​ ​with​ ​limiting​ ​our​ ​word​ ​count.​ ​There’s​ ​so​ ​much​ ​we want​ ​to​ ​convey!​ ​But​ ​if​ ​your​ ​email​ ​is​ ​too​ ​long,​ ​the​ ​recipient​ ​will​ ​never​ ​get​ ​to​ ​your​ ​call​ ​to action.​ ​Try​ ​to​ ​keep​ ​your​ ​email​ ​concise.​ ​It’s​ ​important​ ​to​ ​let​ ​your​ ​personality​ ​shine​ ​through, but​ ​do​ ​it​ ​in​ ​a​ ​way​ ​that’s​ ​not​ ​a​ ​distraction​ ​from​ ​the​ ​goal​ ​of​ ​the​ ​email.

Personality​ ​Style,​ ​Branding,​ ​and​ ​Voice Personality​ ​style:

Different​ ​industries​ ​tend​ ​to​ ​get​ ​stereotyped​ ​based​ ​on​ ​their​ ​history.​ ​Some​ ​industries appear​ ​conservative​ ​in​ ​their​ ​professionalism​ ​like​ ​lawyers,​ ​doctors,​ ​and​ ​B2B​ ​services, while​ ​others​ ​differentiate​ ​themselves​ ​with​ ​more​ ​a​ ​bombastic​ ​approach​ ​like​ ​nightclubs, fashion​ ​retail,​ ​and​ ​entertainment.

You​ ​know​ ​your​ ​audience​ ​better​ ​than​ ​anyone​ ​else,​ ​and​ ​you’ve​ ​worked​ ​hard​ ​to​ ​solidify​ ​your brand’s​ ​identity​ ​and​ ​personality.​ ​Even​ ​if​ ​you’re​ ​in​ ​a​ ​more​ ​professional​ ​industry,​ ​find​ ​ways to​ ​appear​ ​human​ ​in​ ​your​ ​tone.

A​ ​conversational​ ​approach​ ​to​ ​emails​ ​are​ ​more​ ​endearing​ ​than​ ​a​ ​standard​ ​generic template.​ ​Speaking​ ​to​ ​the​ ​recipient​ ​by​ ​using​ ​“you”​ ​instantly​ ​boosts​ ​that​ ​connection.

Action​ ​tips​ ​for​ ​adding​ ​some​ ​personality​ ​into​ ​your​ ​email:

  • Create​ ​a​ ​“thank​ ​you”​ ​video: It​ ​doesn’t​ ​have​ ​to​ ​be​ ​long,​ ​in​ ​fact​ ​keeping​ ​it​ ​under​ ​a​ ​minute​ ​is​ ​ideal.​ ​Pick​ ​someone from​ ​your​ ​company​ ​that​ ​comes​ ​across​ ​well​ ​on​ ​video​ ​and​ ​epitomizes​ ​your company​ ​culture.

  • Tell​ ​a​ ​short​ ​mini​ ​story: Did​ ​a​ ​review​ ​recently​ ​help​ ​another​ ​customer?​ ​In​ ​2-3​ ​sentences,​ ​share​ ​how​ ​that previous​ ​customer’s​ ​review​ ​helped​ ​other​ ​people​ ​decide​ ​that​ ​your​ ​company​ ​was the​ ​right​ ​fit​ ​for​ ​them.

  • Share​ ​a​ ​tip​ ​for​ ​the​ ​next​ ​time​ ​they​ ​want​ ​to​ ​use​ ​your​ ​company: Include​ ​a​ ​short​ ​‘pro-tip’​ ​for​ ​them​ ​to​ ​have​ ​an​ ​even​ ​​better​ ​​experience​ ​next​ ​time.​ Do you​ ​have​ ​a​ ​special​ ​trivia​ ​night​ ​on​ ​Thursdays?​ ​How​ ​early​ ​in​ ​advance​ ​should​ ​they schedule​ ​their​ ​next​ ​appointment?

Remember​ ​that​ ​even​ ​though​ ​you’re​ ​providing​ ​a​ ​tip,​ ​this​ ​isn’t​ ​the​ ​time​ ​to​ ​include​ ​a link​ ​that​ ​diverts​ ​from​ ​the​ ​call​ ​to​ ​action.

Tips​ ​for​ ​the​ ​Campaign​ ​Trail

One​ ​nice​ ​aspect​ ​of​ ​automated​ ​email​ ​campaigns​ ​is​ ​that​ ​the​ ​timing​ ​will​ ​be​ ​predetermined. You’ll​ ​want​ ​the​ ​first​ ​review​ ​request​ ​email​ ​to​ ​go​ ​out​ ​while​ ​the​ ​experience​ ​is​ ​fresh​ ​in​ ​the customer’s​ ​mind,​ ​especially​ ​if​ ​you’re​ ​hoping​ ​for​ ​them​ ​to​ ​include​ ​specific​ ​details​ ​in​ ​their review.

A​ ​three​ ​email​ ​campaign​ ​drip​ ​over​ ​the​ ​course​ ​of​ ​one​ ​week​ ​is​ ​a​ ​sweet​ ​spot​ ​for​ ​conversion. Too​ ​many​ ​emails​ ​in​ ​a​ ​short​ ​amount​ ​of​ ​time​ ​will​ ​annoy​ ​your​ ​customer,​ ​but​ ​people​ ​are forgetful,​ ​so​ ​you​ ​don’t​ ​want​ ​to​ ​only​ ​send​ ​one​ ​email,​ ​and​ ​be​ ​done​ ​with​ ​it.

That​ ​being​ ​said,​ ​you​ ​want​ ​to​ ​increase​ ​the​ ​urgency​ ​of​ ​the​ ​message​ ​with​ ​each​ ​email. Action​ ​tips​ ​for​ ​increasing​ ​urgency:

Second​ ​Email:​ ​Highlight​ ​Review​ ​Importance​ ​and​ ​Value​ ​Their​ ​Time

In​ ​the​ ​second​ ​email,​ ​acknowledge​ ​that​ ​you’re​ ​following​ ​up​ ​on​ ​the first.​ ​Highlight​ ​the​ ​importance​ ​of​ ​the​ ​review​ ​while​ ​the​ ​experience​ ​is fresh​ ​in​ ​their​ ​minds,​ ​and​ ​show​ ​that​ ​you​ ​do​ ​value​ ​their​ ​time.

Final​ ​Email:​ ​Use​ ​Time​ ​Sensitive​ ​Language

While​ ​you​ ​don’t​ ​want​ ​to​ ​make​ ​a​ ​customer​ ​think​ ​that​ ​they’re​ ​run​ ​out of​ ​time​ ​to​ ​submit​ ​a​ ​review,​ ​you​ ​can​ ​use​ ​some​ ​time​ ​sensitive language​ ​that​ ​urges​ ​action.​ ​You​ ​can​ ​even​ ​make​ ​it​ ​humorous,

“I​ ​know​ ​my​ ​memory​ ​fades​ ​more​ ​quickly​ ​as​ ​I​ ​get​ ​older.​ ​We’d​ ​love​ ​for you​ ​to​ ​share​ ​your​ ​experience​ ​before​ ​your​ ​memory​ ​fades​ ​too!”

If​ ​your​ ​relationship​ ​with​ ​your​ ​customers​ ​is​ ​ongoing,​ ​like​ ​a​ ​doctor​ ​or​ ​lawyer,​ ​you​ ​might want​ ​to​ ​set​ ​up​ ​a​ ​long​ ​tail​ ​campaign​ ​that​ ​starts​ ​with​ ​the​ ​three​ ​emails​ ​in​ ​a​ ​week,​ ​but​ ​then occurs​ ​on​ ​a​ ​monthly​ ​basis​ ​until​ ​you​ ​secure​ ​that​ ​review.​ ​The​ ​longer​ ​the​ ​relationship​ ​with the​ ​customer,​ ​the​ ​better​ ​review​ ​you’ll​ ​receive,​ ​so​ ​don’t​ ​let​ ​those​ ​long​ ​time​ ​customers​ ​slip through​ ​the​ ​cracks.

If​ ​At​ ​First​ ​You​ ​Don’t​ ​Succeed,​ ​Try,​ ​Try​ ​Again.

Once​ ​you​ ​have​ ​your​ ​review​ ​funnel​ ​set​ ​up,​​ ​you​ ​can​ ​begin​ ​to​ ​see​ ​how​ ​successfully​ ​your email​ ​campaigns​ ​convert.​​ ​While​ ​you​ ​can​ ​begin​ ​to​ ​analyze​ ​after​ ​a​ ​couple​ ​of​ ​weeks,​ ​I’d recommend​ ​allowing​ ​a​ ​month​ ​to​ ​pass​ ​to​ ​secure​ ​your​ ​review​ ​conversion​ ​benchmarks.

Having​ ​your​ ​conversion​ ​metric​ ​baseline​ ​allows​ ​you​ ​to​ ​begin​ ​testing​ ​what’s​ ​working​ ​and what​ ​can​ ​be​ ​improved​ when​ ​it​ ​comes​ ​to​ ​A/B​ ​testing​ ​your​ ​email​ ​campaign,​ ​you​ ​need​ ​to approach​ ​your​ ​experiments​ ​like​ ​a​ ​scientist.​ ​In​ ​order​ ​to​ ​know​ ​how​ ​your​ ​changes​ ​are impacting​ ​your​ ​conversions,​ ​you’re​ ​going​ ​to​ ​want​ ​to​ ​make​ ​one​ ​change​ ​at​ ​a​ ​time.​ ​It’s tempting​ ​to​ ​completely​ ​rewrite​ ​your​ ​email​ ​and​ ​see​ ​if​ ​that​ ​works,​ ​but​ ​there​ ​are​ ​so​ ​many variables​ ​when​ ​you​ ​make​ ​multiple​ ​changes​ ​that​ ​it​ ​can​ ​be​ ​difficult​ ​to​ ​identify​ ​which​ ​part​ ​of the​ ​change​ ​increased​ ​or​ ​decreased​ ​your​ ​conversion​ ​rate.

Here’s​ ​a​ ​list​ ​of​ ​components​ ​to​ ​test​ ​over​ ​the​ ​course​ ​of​ ​a​ ​year:

  • Subject​ ​Line

  • Greeting

  • First​ ​sentence​ ​of​ ​the​ ​email

  • Main​ ​value​ ​sentence

  • Call​ ​to​ ​action​ ​(Button​ ​vs​ ​link,​ ​Button​ ​color,​ ​messaging)

  • Any​ ​other​ ​components​ ​of​ ​the​ ​email​ ​(graphics,​ ​video,​ ​designed​ ​html​ ​email​ ​vs​ ​text email,​ ​photo​ ​of​ ​person​ ​who​ ​sent​ ​the​ ​email)

First,​ ​you’ll​ ​want​ ​to​ ​craft​ ​a​ ​spreadsheet​ ​to​ ​track​ ​the​ ​changes​ ​and​ ​conversion​ ​rates. Depending​ ​on​ ​the​ ​quantity​ ​of​ ​potential​ ​users​ ​that​ ​enter​ ​your​ ​review​ ​funnel​ ​(look​ ​for​ ​at least​ ​10​ ​per​ ​week),​ ​set​ ​up​ ​a​ ​1​ ​to​ ​2​ ​week​ ​window​ ​of​ ​testing.​ ​After​ ​the​ ​time​ ​frame​ ​is complete,​ ​you​ ​can​ ​compare​ ​the​ ​conversion​ ​rates.​ ​If​ ​it​ ​worked,​ ​keep​ ​the​ ​new​ ​copy​ ​and​ ​try to​ ​change​ ​something​ ​else​ ​for​ ​the​ ​next​ ​window.​ ​If​ ​the​ ​conversions​ ​decreased,​ ​return​ ​to​ ​the original​ ​copy​ ​and​ ​restart​ ​the​ ​process​ ​of​ ​A/B​ ​testing.

Collecting​ ​reviews​ ​is​ ​an​ ​ongoing​ ​process.​ ​Every​ ​single​ ​review​ ​you​ ​receive​ ​has​ ​value.​ ​Even negative​ ​reviews​ ​reveal​ ​insights​ ​into​ ​what​ ​might​ ​not​ ​be​ ​working​ ​with​ ​your​ ​product​ ​or customer​ ​service.​ ​Take​ ​that​ ​info​ ​and​ ​apply​ ​it​ ​to​ ​your​ ​business​ ​to​ ​improve​ ​the​ ​happiness of​ ​your​ ​customers​ ​and​ ​your​ ​future​ ​reviews. Optimizing​ ​your ​review​ ​generating​ ​email​ ​campaign​ ​will​ ​give​ ​you​ ​the​ ​best​ ​chance​ ​to nurture​ ​a​ ​dynamic​ ​review​ ​stream​ ​that​ ​sets​ ​you​ ​apart​ ​from​ ​your​ ​competitors.

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