In today’s global market, competition is so high that companies have a hard time winning over customers. For many, it’s easier to attract new customers than it is to keep existing ones. However, the irony is that it’s more economical to keep existing customers than to acquire new ones.
But even then, these businesses still need to acquire more customers; otherwise, they won’t be profitable. One way of attracting new customers is through strategic marketing approaches. That is where customer reviews come in. Customer reviews are so powerful in influencing the buying decision. They help convince new customers that the company is reputed and trusted by other customers. That way, the risk of making a wrong choice is lower, and hence their money is in good hands.
But sometimes, these reviews aren’t from genuine customers, rather, from some actors masquerading as real consumers. The pressure to win new customers and generate profits is forcing some companies to play this unfair game. And since most businesses are aware, those investing in fake reviews are always doing it knowingly.
Why are Fake Reviews a Cause for Concern?
If you are like many, you want some social proof before committing to buy a product or service. The reason behind this is that you don’t want to bet your money and time on a brand that nobody trusts. So it’s way easier to convince yourself that a particular company is trustworthy if they have earned some five stars from previous buyers. Being able to mitigate risk when using AI is critical.
According to a 2020 BrightLocal Consumer Review Survey, 84% of people say they trust online reviews as much as friends. Similarly, 68% form an opinion, enough to influence their buying decision after reading one to six online reviews. And while more people seem to trust online reviews, companies, on the other hand, have started to notice the other side of the coin – i.e., the cost of fake reviews.
One of the most comprehensive review platforms, Yelp, is among the many companies that have started to sort through the reviews to check for dishonest brands and businesses. Recently, the review platform shut down 550 user accounts linked to fraudulent customer reviews activities. And it’s obvious why these platforms should be wary of fake reviews.
Nowadays, corrupt companies aren’t only generating fake reviews to promote their brands. They are also generating negative reviews to hurt their competitors’ online reputations. This trend has gotten worse, forcing serious companies to take a step further. And luckily for them, AI has been the ultimate solution. In addition to this, companies can use data from their customers’ reviews to improve their strategy and sales, but only when the reviews are real.
How AI Does Its Magic
Most people who rely on customer reviews when purchasing products or services can quickly argue that detecting a fake review from a genuine one is easy. And while this is true to some extent, it’s not always the case. Unless someone does a terrible job that you can easily spot without reading the past two sentences.
Today, there are more fake or fabricated positive reviews on the internet than real ones from genuine customers. Big companies and institutions are now tapping into the power of AI to detect fake reviews, and the experiment has been successful in most instances.
So, how does AI succeed in detecting a fake customer from a genuine one? By leveraging its language processing abilities to detect suspicious text patterns, writing style, and formatting. Some of the best AI algorithms in this niche have an internal scoring system that rates reviews and raises alerts in case of suspicious patterns. That way, the team can further pursue the authenticity of those particular reviews.
For the fake review algorithm to work perfectly, it must be trained first and allowed to learn from its mistakes. Through machine learning and natural language processing, AI has cemented its reputation in cracking even the most sophisticated fake reviews, allowing genuine customers and businesses to have their place in the market.
Work on Your Online Reputation
If you care about your customers, you value their satisfaction after every interaction. Satisfied customers are more likely to come back for repeat business and even share positive reviews about your company.
To get more Google reviews for your business, you need to build strong relationships across every customer interaction. Some companies have mastered the art of enticing their customers to give positive reviews on platforms such as Google and Facebook. However, this should be done ethically and in a professional way. Before taking this step, you should learn how to ask for reviews such that customers feel free to share their genuine concerns and give feedback more naturally.
Enhancing your online reputation, engaging new & existing customers, and growing your business is no easy job. You want to work with a competent customer experience company that understands your needs and your customers. That way, your business will stand out and attract more customers. Contact us if you need any help marketing your business…We’re happy to help!
Danielle Foley, Marketing Consultant/Owner
Foley Marketing Advisors