The obvious: Covid-19 has been hard for nearly all businesses.
Regional guidelines and infection control tactics have left many businesses without dependable foot traffic or customers. On top of that, resuming customer-facing services presents a whole new set of hurdles, and operational strategies that further impact financial stability.
So, as a business owner, how do you navigate these types of setbacks and ensure that your restaurant thrives? During and after the pandemic?
You have to get creative with your marketing resources.
Specifically, with customer reviews.
Good customer reviews are the easiest, cheapest marketing solution for just about any type of business. Plus, your customers rely on them more than almost anything else to make decisions, with 94% of diners relying on online reviews to help make their decisions. You probably already know this.
And the fact of the matter is, customers are a skeptical bunch. With more and more fake reviews popping up online, the more discerning they have become. There’s only so much a written review can do for someone. After all, seeing is believing.
Enter: video reviews.
Video reviews allow your customers (both repeat and prospective) to have an inside look at your restaurant, allowing them to make a decision quickly and easily. More importantly, as the pandemic continues, these video reviews provide insight as to how your business is responding to the new safety principles.
Let’s dive a little deeper.
The Impact of Customer Reviews
It’s reported that 91% of consumers are more likely to visit a place with consistent, positive reviews. And, most consumers will spend an average of about 13 minutes reading online reviews before making a decision. Just imagine how much time you could save them by leveraging video reviews instead.
Now, perhaps more than ever, it’s critical for businesses to leverage transparency and the power of customer reviews. Let customers know you’re still here — and while the pandemic might impact how you interact with them, it has only strengthened your commitment to them.
How to Get Customer Reviews
So, how does your business get customer reviews? By asking.
Asking customers for a review isn’t that uncommon. Nearly 70% of customers have been asked, by a local business, to give a review about their experience. More importantly, data suggests that almost 85% of customers are open to leaving reviews if requested.
Means of acquiring customer reviews are relatively varied. The thing to remember here is that you shouldn’t ask for a positive review. It makes your customers feel uneasy, and it hides the truth of their experience which prevents you from being able to improve their experience.
Now, you do need to consider the type of review. Is it a written review on Yelp, or a photo posted on Google with a star rating next to it? All have their benefits. But, as mentioned – seeing is believing. And what better way to see an experience than to watch it with your own eyes. That’s where video comes in. A review that prospective customers can see for themselves. And trust.
The Importance of Video Reviews
According to Wyzowl research, two-thirds of consumers prefer learning about products and services through video rather than text. From a marketing perspective, 80% of in-house brand video marketers have ascertained that video has contributed directly to an increase in sales.
Furthermore, when reading text, people retain only 10% of the message. However, when viewing videos, retention levels increase to 95%.
To that end, video reviews are a far more powerful tool for engaging and building trust with potential clients than written ones. Plus, with potential customers wary of Covid related threats, customer video reviews are the perfect tool for reassuring them of not just the quality of your meals and service, but also their safety.
The Importance of getting your video reviews OUT THERE
What good is a review if no one can see it? And if it’s hard to make one, who would leave a review anyway? It’s imperative that you make the “how” easy. It needs to be easy for customers to leave reviews, and for customers to find them. Which is why you need the right video tool.
This is where franki comes in. It’s a platform that empowers customers to discover new places to eat or drink based on other user’s video reviews, as well as to leave on their own quickly and easily. And by using a platform like franki, you as a business owner are able to incentivize customers to come in, create video content that showcases your business, and content that you can share across your other social channels.
With that being said...
We know 2020 was a tough year, and 2021 is off to a slow start. But your restaurant can thrive even amidst the COVID-19 crisis. We hope these tips and tricks can help. If you have any questions at all, ideas, or just want to brainstorm, myself and our franki team live for this — please reach out to anyone on the franki team via our website, or me directly at [email protected]. We are more than happy to help however we can! And if we can’t, I have no doubt we will know someone that can.
If you’d like to learn more about what franki does and how we help local businesses by incentivizing customers to make their marketing content, check out franki here. Or, see how other businesses are making their dining experience video-worthy by checking out some of the videos on our app. It’s available in the Google Play Store and the Apple App store.