Picture this: you’ve just been reinvited to a thrice-rescheduled wedding. It’s on a farm in upstate New York at the end of August and the dress code is, “white, preferably a vintage wedding dress.” You need to ask the masses: where can you find a cheap, used, summer wedding dress?
The most efficient way to do it? No, it’s not a group text. It’s Facebook. That’s where people post their wedding photos! It’s a far-reaching audience while still being niche and personal. The best of both worlds.
“But, Mary, what does this have to do with recommendations for my business?”
I’m so glad you asked. We’ll find the answer to all that and more by covering the following:
- What are Facebook recommendations?
- How do I enable Facebook recommendations on my Facebook business page?
- How do I ask for a recommendation on Facebook?
What are Facebook recommendations?
Facebook recommendations take two parts: user recommendations and algorithmic recommendations.
User recommendations are manual, either in response to a question asking for a recommendation or from a company’s Facebook page.
Algorithmic recommendations come from Facebook and are related to content you have searched or interacted with in the past.
If you’re a Facebook user, it’s likely you’ve seen people posting in groups or to their status asking for recommendations. Maybe for a used wedding dress shop, a cardiologist in your area, the best place to buy authentic tahini, you name it.
Why should I care about Facebook recommendations?
But don’t just take my word for it.
82% of consumers read and trust local business reviews, and 91% of millennials trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations! Facebook recommendations are a perfect blend of online reviews from (maybe not-so) personal connections.
How to ask for recommendations on Facebook
Other than simply running your business to impress and delight your customers, how can you actively work to get more Facebook recommendations? Well. We have some strategies up our sleeve for you to try out.
Let’s get your small business some Facebook recommendations!
Get Facebook recommendations set up on your business page
First, you’ll need to make sure recommendations are enabled on your Facebook business page. Navigate to Settings and select Templates and Tabs.
In the Tabs, there will be an option to switch on Reviews (a.k.a. recommendations). Make sure this tab is selected before asking your customers to leave recommendations, or else they won’t be able to!
Once this is switched on and you begin to gather reviews, you’ll be able to access insights via the Insights tab of your business page.
Leverage QR codes to prompt Facebook recommendations
While we’ve all leaned into QR codes as the latest in low-touch restaurant experiences, that means that everyone knows what to do and how to scan them now. Try printing out a QR code that directs your customers to your Facebook page to leave a recommendation! When your staff delivers a check, prints a receipt, or emails an invoice, they can also prompt a recommendation.
Embed a link to Facebook recommendations on your website
This is an easy one. Just like you embed social links on your website, you can easily direct your Facebook link to prompt users to leave a recommendation.
If you want it to be extra tempting, embed reviews from Facebook directly onto your website to entice others to leave new, glowing reviews.
Cite recommendations in Facebook ads
Like showing off your Facebook recommendations on your website, you can also use them in your Facebook ads as promoted content! I’ve seen first-hand how well this can work. We created an ad campaign with reviews that were re-designed by our graphic designer. And let me tell you, they really performed.
Even better, it got more people to leave comments that were additional happy reviews AND encouraged attention-seekers to ask us to feature their review!
Ask for Facebook recommendations via email
As always, a great place to ask for reviews lies within your email marketing. I like to include a templated footer into customer update emails to request recommendations in a friendly way. Something like, “Loving your experience with us? We’d love to hear it. Leave a recommendation for your friends here.”
In fact, 70% of people would be happy to write a review…if you ask. It’s essential to shoot your shot!
Respond to existing and new Facebook recommendations
While this may not be the best way to get new reviews, make sure your team responds to your Facebook recommendations, regardless of whether they’re good or bad. Acknowledging a challenging experience and working to make it right is always going to make me give a company a second chance. And reading other honest, but glowing, reviews will encourage me to try a company out for the first time.
Importantly, ask your reviewers to include pictures! Any post including a photo performs better by drawing in more users.
Offer rewards for Facebook recommendations
Once upon a time, a restaurant owner gave me and my friend our entire meal for free because we left a glowing review while we were there. While this was a nice surprise, I would have been extremely tempted to go to another restaurant and leave a review if I had known there was a discount associated with it.
If your business has frequent-flyer punch cards, or a point system, give bonus points for leaving a recommendation. Or, offer a freebie or coupon. You could even run a Facebook contest or giveaway to encourage folks to provide recommendations. People love to get free stuff for very little effort.
Ask partners to reference your Facebook recommendations
There’s a lot of different ways to do this, but if you’re partnering with a street festival or having a pop-up, or an aggregator reaches out to you for information, include your Facebook page! Even better, ask them to link directly to your recommendations or include a screenshot from the page.
This will help with exposure and SEO, so prospects performing due diligence should find your Facebook recommendations right away… and be encouraged to leave one of their own after trying out your offering.
Stand out with Facebook recommendations
Facebook recommendations can help your business win over new customers and give you deeper insight into what people love about you—and who doesn’t love that? Go forth and gather new, shiny, happy recommendations! We can’t wait to read them.