Facebook Recommendations Guide: How To Get More Positive Reviews
Not all social media marketing is pricey. Facebook Recommendations are a free and easy way to engage with customers and promote your brand online. Read on to discover how to earn 5-star reviews and grow your business on Facebook.
While newcomers like TikTok are taking center stage with younger demographics, Facebook remains a go-to platform for Millennial customers.
What can this mean for your business?
A lot if you get your company in front of the 31% of users in the 25-34 year age bracket. These users are looking for businesses to engage with – and they’re looking to Facebook recommendations to help make their choices.
More associated with fun and friends, Facebook is ground zero for business recommendations.
If people are taking to Facebook to evaluate your business, you need to step up your Facebook reputation. The more current and engaging your page, the more appealing you’ll seem to potential customers.
While you might be tempted to update your phone number, add a few photos, and head back out into the field, it would be a shame to overlook the impact of Facebook reviews.
And the good news? You can moderate, interact, and encourage reviews to push your business forward.
Ready to use Facebook as a tool to boost your reputation and attract new customers? Read on to discover everything you need to know.
From reviews to recommendations: A brief history
“Wait, I thought we were talking about reviews?”
We are. But Facebook has made updates to their setup, so it’s good to know how and where reviews and recommendations are used.
Facebook company pages have been around since 2007, evolving consistently from year to year. Options for categories and business details have evolved to make info more searchable for users. While reviews have recently undergone changes of their own.
Originally, Facebook let users leave a review on a sliding scale, from 1-star to 5-stars. Customers could rank a service or product and leave their feedback in a comment. However, companies couldn’t easily moderate content, and with a limited review pool, one bad review could tank a star rating.
Reviews are now delivered as ‘Recommendations’.
The difference? Customers can say whether they do or don’t recommend a company and share a reason why. This streamlines feedback and makes it easier for potential customers to get a more accurate feel for a company.
Benefits of Facebook Recommendations
Local business recommendations nested inside a social media platform don’t sound super exciting. But you might be surprised by how much marketing benefit and flexibility Facebook Recommendations- and their local business pages in general – allow for.
Here’s a few of our favorite advantages that come with a Facebook Recommendations strategy.
By taking a little time to build up your page and recommendations, you can reach even more customers in search of services like yours.
✅ Images are more engaging
Facebook lets your customers post photos along with their recommendations which help showcase what your services and business are all about. Even if you don’t think there’s anything visually exciting about the work you do, photos help make your Facebook Business profile more compelling.
Advertising is one thing. Getting people to take action is another. 72% of people are more likely to trust a company if they see positive reviews online.
With Facebook Recommendations, people are more likely to visit your site or call for info if other customers are sharing their positive feedback. This boost in conversions can have a big impact on your business and bottom line.
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Understanding where your Facebook Rating Scores come from
With the change from Reviews to Recommendations, Facebook shows a straightforward score on a scale from 0 to 5.
This rating is averaged across how many people say they will (or won’t) recommend your business. If you had ratings from the old Reviews format, those are factored in too.
Early on, this number might fluctuate a bit until the average evens out, so don’t panic if your overall score is low at first. The good news is that Facebook also shows the number of people who have rated your business. For example, a 4.8 out of 5 rating based on the opinion of 86 people. Higher rating scores from a greater number of people is an impressive metric that helps build trust.
How to activate Facebook Recommendations
To get started, you’ll need a Facebook Business page. If you used Reviews in the past, you won’t need to do anything, as the Recommendations are already enabled on your page.
But if you are new to the idea, it’s easy to set up:
Go to your Facebook page and click ‘Settings’.
Find the ‘Templates and Tabs’ option on the left menu.
Look for the ‘Reviews’ tab in the list and switch it on.
The Reviews tab will appear toward the top of your Facebook Business page along with About, Home, and Photos.
How to respond to Recommendations on Facebook
Responding to the recommendations you get on your Facebook page is a great way to engage with your customers.
Whether the feedback is positive or negative, you should make an effort to chat with people who took the time to comment on your services.
As your Facebook Business page admin, you’ll be notified each time you receive a review. Though if you want to cover all of your bases there are online reputation management software, such as Brand24 and Chekkit, you can use to alert you when you get customer feedback.
Responding to Recommendations is a science, not an art. So follow a few basic principles of reputation management when you find a new review or piece of feedback.
Thank positive reviews
Telling people you appreciate their feedback and time can go a long way.
Nurturing relationships with happy customers could prompt them to keep recommending you to their neighbors or friends. It can also show others how much you value their input.
Ways you can engage with positive reviews include:
General thanks for their time reviewing you: “Thank you for the kind words. We love our customers!”
Share something more personal about the job: “So glad we were able to fix that busted pipe in time for you!”
Include something about your business: “Happy to hear your kids love the backyard. We only use kid-safe products to ensure the safety of your little ones.”
Address negative feedback
It’s bound to happen – someone with a bad experience or a misunderstanding will take to Facebook to share their experience. Don’t let this discourage you. Instead, use it as an opportunity to show how professional, engaged, and responsive you are.
Ways you can engage with negative reviews include:
General negativity with little explanation: “I’m sorry to hear you had a negative experience. If you’d like to reach out to us directly, we’d like to try to address this for you.”
Specific issues or feedback: “Thank you for sharing your experience. As a company manager, I’d be happy to discuss this further and try to make it right. You can contact me directly here [insert contact info].”
Counter an issue with facts: “Thank you for letting us know. We’re known for our customer service and are sorry we did not live up to our high standards in this instance.”
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How to get more Facebook Reviews
While some reviews may trickle in naturally, you can take a few steps to boost the number of reviews you have on Facebook. This might seem like more work, but it will pay off in the end for you.
More reviews can mean more ways to show future customers why they should choose your business. Remember, people are always on the lookout for authentic customer reviews to help them make purchasing decisions. The key is to get your happy customers on board and advocate for your company.
Here’s a few of our favorite strategies to generate a flood of Facebook reviews (5-stars of course).
Target your satisfied customers
Job completed successfully? Ask your customers then and there to review you and share their experience. Include a link to your Facebook Business page in email invoices or copies of receipts to make it easy for happy customers to find your page.
Follow up with previous customers
New to Facebook but have a large book of business? No problem! You can create an email to send to former or repeat customers. Include a link to your page and let them know how much their feedback can mean to you. You can even include an incentive to encourage them to participate, like a discount on their next service.
Use email templates to simplify requests
Asking for reviews doesn’t need to take up your time. Whether you automate requests or send manual emails, here’s a template you can use or adjust to your business:
Hi [First Name],
Thanks for being a [Company Name] customer. We have enjoyed providing you with [YOUR SERVICE AREA] and appreciate your business.
Would you mind taking 2 minutes to review us and share your experience with others? Just visit our Facebook page [INCLUDE LINK] and click Yes to recommend us. Your story can help others make the right choice for themselves as they look for a [INDUSTRY/SERVICE].
As a thank you for your time, I’ll send you a discount coupon you can put toward a future service.
How to report a Recommendation
Negative or unhappy customers are one thing, but lies and strategically offensive reviews are another.
Did someone cross the line in their comments? Did someone rate your business but they aren’t even a customer?
If a Facebook recommendation crosses the line, you do have options.
Facebook offers its own guidelines for assessing acceptable content and reporting violations including abusive language or review comments unrelated to the product or service page. If you’re concerned you’re the target of false reviews, here’s a few steps you can take:
Separate ‘negative’ reviews from ‘false’ reviews
You can’t request or remove every negative comment. If the feedback is warranted, let it be. Respond to the review professionally and see if that helps. You can even ask the person to revise the review themselves if you resolve their issue offline.
Reach out directly
Inaccurate or invalid feedback? Try reaching out privately to the person first. You can directly message the person without making the conversation public.
Ask them to clarify the situation and their response. Do they perhaps have the wrong lawn care service in mind since you don’t have a record of their customer details? Are they sure the plumber’s name was ‘Peter’ since you don’t have anyone on staff with that name? You might be able to clarify and encourage the unhappy reviewer to remove or update a misplaced comment with some direct connection.
Flag hateful or inappropriate content
Sometimes the best course of action is to flag content for removal.
Find the post on your page and click the three dots in the top right corner.
Click the option to report the review.
Select a reason to give Facebook more feedback
Reviews aren’t removed immediately, but Facebook will address each request and determine whether it qualifies for removal.
Recommendations as free marketing? Yes please!
With social media advertising often costing an arm and a leg, Facebook Recommendations are a proven (and free) way for you to promote your business online, so don’t overlook this free marketing opportunity for your local business.
Make sure you create a Facebook Business page and include accurate contact info and photos to engage customers and leads. Show how you stand out from the competition and create conversations on your posts as people come and go in the comments.
Encourage your customers to leave their feedback on your page and help others make the right choice for them. Remember how many people are on Facebook, even at a local level, many of whom are using this information to decide whether to engage with your business.
With Facebook Recommendations, you can attract new customers and grow your business without breaking your budget. Start today by creating a plan for how you’ll ask customers to review you and watch how your growing (and glowing) Facebook Recommendations can boost your business.
Looking for new ways to get more out of your social media accounts? Check out our social media marketing services and recruit reinforcements when it comes to growing your local business marketing on Facebook and beyond!