What should we do to try and get people to write reviews?

Ryan Prosser
9 replies
Background: We're building a job/career review website, which provides an inside look into a wide variety of career paths. Our belief is better job/career data will lead to better decisions. Long-term: We're building a shadowing and coaching network to help people quickly reskill themselves for jobs/careers they've identified as worth pursuing. So far, building this type of network has been very challenging. We have about 90 reviews so far, and it has been a grind. We have a couple of ideas, but we're looking for feedback. Is there some obvious factor we're not taking into account? Here are some of the ideas we've been working on: - Continue to manually recruit users, interview them and write the reviews on their behalf (downside is this method is very time-intensive) - Custom sock giveaway: write a review, refer two friends - we send participants a pair of dope socks (downside is this method is expensive, and there is no guarantee it's going to have the effect we desire) - A karma system, incentivizing people with added privileges (downside is we don't have much of an ecosystem or forum yet, so this is hard to incentivize). - Recruiting kind souls on Reddit who are willing to write reviews. (downside this has also been a challenge, 1/15 say they will write a review, but we have to continually follow-up with them for about a month or two before they actually write it). Any ideas or feedback is welcome. We're hoping to launch on Product Hunt this Winter. Also, we're happy to return any pro-bono work (test your product) for anyone that comments :)


Andreea Bunica
What I gathered so far, and what I'm starting to implement in my own startups' strategy, is building community around your product. I think you shouldn't try to bribe people to write reviews for you, but you should ensure that they see you as another human being, that is trying to help you- try to form a genuine, emotional connection with the people that are using your website, especially that you are focusing on guiding people on their life paths!!! Get people that want to share their success stories (not with your website, but with their careers). Get people to share their struggles, and only after show how those can be alleviated with your product. As for feedback per se, try sending a short google forms questionnaire.
Ryan Prosser
@andreea_bunica Andrea, thanks for the thoughtful response! We agree that bribing people to write reviews may not be the best approach. So far, the people we've connected with on a deeper level have in fact provided the most helpful content. We'll try out the short google forms questionnaire :)
Gabriel Bujold
What I like to do is to "hit the ground running" when a customer is really pumped about his experience with you. In your business model, it can be complicated, but I would maybe suggest reviews when interacting directly to your customers when they are at a certain stage (it's kind of an outbound strategy, but you could reach some people with specific job title at some companies automatically and start a conversation by discussing what was their role at this company). People like talking about themselves, especially in a professional way. That could point the direction of asking for a review if they like (or not) working at this company to help others find their dream job. In my case, giving free stuff against a review is working great. We are automating everything on Intercom and we got a bunch of great reviews for our product. I know it's not the same thing that you're trying to reach, but it might give you some ideas. Hope I was able to help!
Ryan Prosser
@bujold19 Gabriel, thanks for the response! It's true everyone's favorite subject is themselves, we need to tap into this. We like the leveraging our happiest customers :)
Try reaching out to people in the industry on LinkedIn, it might be somewhat of an ardous process, but even if you send out 10-20 messages for one reply from a specialist (maybe even an interested party), you can get some solid advice, and they might even point you in thew right direction. I would agree with the reddit strategy, but take a look at other communities where your product might be relevant, e.g. there are slack communities/channels, where people are actively looking for work. Posting on these kinds of channels is likely to get you some feedback, with some maybe even willing to join your community. Bear in mind, you don't want to be pursuing uniterested parties (like the ones you mentioned re:Reddit). Feedbackisn't created equal, it's much better to have feedback from 10 people who took the time to actually review your product, rather than 50 who said to themselves "this guy wants a review, so I'll be nice and quickly throw a comment his way for the sake of his numbers".
Ryan Prosser
@arseniyw Hi, thanks for the response! The LinkedIn approach is a good idea, even if somewhat ardous. Hopefully we can do refine our approach to improve our conversions from 1/20, provided they see the value we can provide in return. We agree that "not all feedback is created equal," it's something we've been thinking a lot about lately. Instead of changing the product, maybe target users that desperately want what we're building. Quality > Quantity is the better approach in the long-run. Like the slack channel idea as well :)
Jonah Heard
Hello! I’m no expert but just wanted to give my insight. I love your platform’s idea and the benefit it could bring to people in a dilemma about their careers. I myself could relate and wish something similar to your platform was offered to me before I went to college. I got a glimpse of your site and based from my understanding on your post here on PH, you are trying to acquire more career reviews from people who chose their specific profession, right? The reviews are part of your platform’s content as the first phase of your user on boarding. To get them engaged and give them knowledge about a possible career in mind. It’s quite tricky not unless you have a team dedicated to sit down, interview people, and write their reviews for them. One thing I noticed from checking some of the reviews on the site.. For a regular person, it might seem time consuming just to write a review that detailed. In my opinion, if the feedback mentioned above didn’t work, maybe try using a combination of different approach? Try to reach out to your target markets that will benefit from this (companies who wanted to hire). You might be able to talk to one of their employees or professionals that are really driven and have passion for what they do whatever it may be. And in return for their feedback/review, you can refer driven people in that career path for that company. Like what Arseny mentioned. Start with industries like LinkedIn. Good luck!!