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Embrace the feedback

How many times have you been in the process of purchasing a product online and clicked on its customer reviews? You look for reviews because you want to know whether the product is worth the money you are paying for it.

In the same way, people who consider donating to or volunteering for nonprofits want to feel better about how they are spending their money or time. Thus, they turn to online reviews.

Most nonprofits have accounts in which customers can rate them, such as Google, Facebook and Yelp. The key, however, is leveraging positive reviews to benefit your organization. Here, Church Mutual offers a few steps to use reviews to your advantage:

  1. Ask for reviews. You could just wait for someone to rave about you online. Or, you could make it easy for them. Whenever you talk to a volunteer, donor or other community member who has something good to say about you, provide them with an online link they can use to make their comments public. Think of people you know would have great things to say about your organization and invite them to write an online review.
  2. Acknowledge contributors. When someone follows through with posting a positive review, be sure to thank them. They are doing you a huge favor, and contributors want to feel appreciated. Plus, they are more likely to share their thoughts with others if they know you value them.
  3. Share with others. These reviews could be the deciding factor in whether someone decides to donate to or volunteer for your organization. Share them far and wide! Post them on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, your website and more. Customer reviews are also a great place to find quotes you can use for annual reports, newsletters and other communications. Consider approaching a person who gave a good review and asking to interview them for a longer testimonial. You can use such testimonials for many different types of promotional efforts, including ads, media pitches and formal appeals to donors.

You may be concerned that if you solicit customer reviews, some of them may be less than favorable. While this isn’t ideal, it can provide you with an opportunity to address any challenges or issues that exist within your organization. You could take the feedback in stride and turn a rough situation into an excellent customer service opportunity!

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