Content Marketing: UGC Masterclass in Customer Reviews (episode 078)

by April Buencamino-dy

Tomasz is CEO at Opinew, a Shopify review app, recently a Shopify Staff Pick! Tomasz founded Opinew 6 years ago to make it easier to BOTH collect reviews, AND use them to improve conversion rates, and create more customer-focused marketing.

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About Tomasz

Tomasz started Opinew by accident, as a project for university.

He says he has always liked reviews and checks them before buying anything. As a computer science student, he did research on artificial intelligence and predictive analysis of what makes a review useful to read for a potential customer.

His project eventually became a student startup that has been implemented in Shopify.

Preferred Format For Reviews As UGC

Right now, the format that’s working is video because it catches people’s attention and makes the most impact.

A few years back, photo was the dominant format but looking at social media, video is king nowadays. But Tomasz says you should still continue using photos and text. In terms of the latter, make sure it’s easy for people to read the textual information.

Tomasz reminds that reviews are there to help people easily make a decision on buying your product. Whatever your medium, make sure to use good quality photos, videos, and texts.

Incentivizing Reviews

Incentivizing consumers for leaving reviews is very important.

When you offer incentives such as discount coupons, the number of reviews you get increases, and that is based on data, Tomasz says. Additionally, he also mentions that the discount rate – whether it’s 5% or 15% – doesn’t make much difference.

How To Collect Reviews

Tomasz says, use whatever channel is not being abused at the moment.

You can collect reviews through email, but what’s also surprising is that brands now use SMS to collect reviews. Additionally, Tomasz mentions that the next big thing is WhatsApp.

Just think of the channel that would make your audience pick up their phone, check your message, and get them to leave a review.

Using Reviews from Other Platforms

When asked whether it’s acceptable to use reviews about your product that come from other platforms – such as marketplaces – Tomasz says it’s fine. In fact, thousands of merchants pull reviews from Amazon and incorporate them on Shopify.

Using reviews from Amazon or eBay is proof that you’re selling on other platforms and actually successful. Conversions can significantly improve when you post reviews about your product. And again, it will help your customers make the decision to buy easily and quickly, and actually help in getting less product returns.

Using The Right Reviews In The Right Places

Tomasz emphasizes that it’s important to use reviews, and use the right ones in the right places.

You can post reviews on your checkout and product pages, but the type of review you put in there should not be the same.

Use the appropriate review based on where your audience lands, in order to maximize the results reviews can deliver.

Insider Tips

If we’ve inspired someone to take their first step with content marketing – what do they need to know to give themselves the best chance of success?

Reviews in eCommerce are crucial, so use them to increase sales and reduce product returns.

The amount of reviews you have also matters. Have at least 30 reviews to convince consumers to make a decision. When you get to the hundreds, not only do you have social proof, but you also get the benefit of being a popular product.

Once you’ve started of course you’ve got to ‘keep optimising’! So what’s your favourite way to improve content marketing performance?

You need to look at the quality of your reviews, regardless if it’s a photo, a video, or text.

Again, it’s important to have text. Right now, Opinew can automatically find the reviews that will convert best and are most helpful for your customers.

If someone listening wants to learn more about content marketing is there one cheap/free resource you’d recommend?

Visit Opinew’s blog and read up on how to optimize your reviews.

One topic Tomasz recommends is the importance of negative reviews and how it can showcase the kind of customer support you offer your customers.

Crystal ball time – what’s coming up in the next 6-12 months that we should be getting ready for in content marketing?

First, video will be the new norm, and having this will give you a full range of content you can use.

In terms of the pandemic, in-person shopping will bounce back and there are going to be creative ways of collecting and even displaying social proof while someone is purchasing in-store.

Interview Links

Tomasz on Social media:

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