With today’s post, I offer a few thoughts related to online review writing alongside a request from me to you. About two months ago, my friend Jeffry Gerson, who also happens to be my excellent eye doctor, mentioned to me that he and his business partner had decided to start monitoring the reviews and online commentary they were getting on the internet for their optometry practice, Westglen Eyecare. I thought that was a great idea – especially given what we know of people wanting to do business with companies and people who they know and/or with companies and people for whom they have received a recommendation from a trusted source. In fact, I thought it was such a good idea, that I immediately went out and offered Jeffry a review of my own.
Today, there are many, many companies that rely solely on consumer reviews as the product/service/content that they offer: Yelp, Angie’s List, Trip Advisor and others. As such, it stands to reason that we could each benefit from our own set of reviews – both those we give and those we get. And, in the spirit of networking it makes sense for each of us to commit to being on both sides of that equation.
Of course, I have heard the negative commentary… that many reviews are fake, that people are paid to write them, that some do it only for the incentives or contest entries they receive. But, from what I can gather, the majority of reviews (my non-scientific guesstimate) are offered voluntarily without the reviewer receiving remuneration of any kind.
In fact, I believe the quid pro quo nature of review writing can have great, unexpected intrinsic benefits for the author. Among them:
- Improved credibility in the community or industry;
- Perception as an expert or authority on a particular topic or matter;
- A new platform for sharing thoughts/opinions; and
- The pure good feeling gotten from doing or saying something nice about another person or business.
So, are you ready to get started with your review writing and review seeking? Consider these opportunities:
- LinkedIn: In order to have a complete LinkedIn profile, users are required to have a minimum number of reviews or recommendations. These recommendations serve as a series of diverse, third party endorsements. They are brief statements from people you have worked with (both employers and co-workers are appropriate), fellow volunteers, professors, clients, mentors, et al. LinkedIn makes it easy for you to request recommendations and review each one as they are completed, prior to posting them on your profile. I suggest that people aim for at least five recommendations. And, don’t forget, you should consider offering to write reviews for your contacts, colleagues, clients, suppliers and others with whom you have particularly enjoyed your interactions and who simply do remarkable work.
- Amazon.com: As a newly published author, I have never been more keenly aware of the need for customer reviews to promote one’s work. In order to generate looks and, ultimately, sales, it is important for writers to have comments from people who have read their books. Another critically important reason is that the comments can help authors to improve on and/or expand their writings for future editions of the books. With that, I have a personal request for those of you who have read or plan to read my book, Coffee Lunch Coffee: A Practical Field Guide for Master Networking… please, whatever you thought/think of the book, provide me with a review on Amazon or whatever other site you choose. I am already very grateful to Duane who said, “A Must-Read Book for a Connected World” with five out of five stars and to Brent who wrote, “Several Practical Takeaways” granting it four stars. Please add your comments, too! Thank you for your consideration and candor.
In closing and in honor of his 65th birthday, I offer this review of my dad, Max Muller. Daddy Max, you are simply AWESOME! I give you an A+ for being an amazing person, husband, son, father, grandfather, friend, mentor, businessman, veteran, karate sensei, writer/author, speaker, teacher, and so much more. You’re the smartest human I know. You are always there for me and for everyone for whom you care, putting others before yourself at every turn. Your unconditional love and devotion is the example after which I try to model my own life. Happy, Happy, Happy Birthday! I am your #1 raving fan and I love you!
Tomorrow: Get out the VOTE!