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Let’s face it, we’re living in the era of brand advocacy. Before you buy anything from the internet, you do one of these two things: you try to find reviews or ask for honest recommendations from someone. This way, you get more confidence before finally deciding to buy something.
In other words, you’re looking for social proof to justify your decision. You might never buy a new product unless someone else has tried it first. For example, would you buy something with lots of negative reviews? We bet you wouldn’t. That’s how powerful brand advocacy is.
The same principle applies to affiliate marketing. Many affiliate marketers create content, write reviews, and promote affiliate links to influence people to buy things. You’ve seen this on social media, news, and blogs.
Unfortunately, there are a lot of dishonest recommendations on the internet, and it leads to disaster. You might have bought something and found it’s nowhere near as advertised. You regret buying it and have to wait for a refund. This situation causes you to become skeptical about your future purchase.
Thus, this first post is born.
In this blog post, we’ll explain why we need more honest reviews and recommendations than ever from the perspective of a brand and a buyer. Moreover, we will also outline the problem of dishonest reviews and how they could negatively impact people.
Without further ado, let’s jump right into it.
The Key to Successful Brand Advocacy
Honest recommendations are the key to successful brand advocacy for both brand and the buyer in the first place. If a brand runs an affiliate program, honesty and transparency will work well in the long run to improve product quality and sales conversion. On the other hand, affiliate marketers, who are in the middle of the process, should provide honest reviews and recommendations, which is essential to establish a credible relationship between brands and customers.
Brand Perspective: We Need Your Recommendation
Firstly, let’s say you’re selling stuff on the internet as a brand. You will need product and service recommendations to increase your conversion rates. Why? Because in the end, you want more sales, right?
As a seller, having your customers recommend the stuff you’re selling is like having free ads. You would prefer people to promote your product or service through word of mouth. So, you don’t have to pay too much for advertisements.
Thus, every brand out there should seek customers’ recommendations. Why? Because without them, potential buyers will doubt the product or service you’re offering.
Here is an imaginary scenario:
Let’s say you launch a new smartphone brand. Let’s call it Orange. You’ve planned everything, and you’re ready to advertise it. You even hired influencers to review your new smartphone.
Do you think people will buy it? Probably. It actually depends on how those hired influencers talk about your phone. Nowadays, people can detect fake reviews and recommendations. So, as a brand, you need honest reviews and recommendations to ensure your product sells.
Buyer Perspective: We Need Recommendations
Now, let’s look at the other side of the coin.
So, why does a customer need product or service recommendations? If we look at it from the customer’s perspective, they need it for certainty. Many people, including us—will think twice before buying a particular product or service.
Here is another imaginary scenario:
Imagine there is a new smartphone brand. Let’s call it Orange (again). You’ve read all the technical specifications, it fits your budget, and looks good. Moreover, it’s available in your favorite color.
Would you buy it? We don’t think so. Why? Because you have no idea what the hell is that. So, what would you do? You’re back to square one.
You see, people will read reviews and seek honest recommendations for stuff they didn’t know. This happens a lot with many new affiliate programs in the MMO niche.
After that, they will decide whether they want to buy or not. More importantly, this decision can only happen when people have enough recommendations. In other words, people need to be convinced by facts and results.
For example, one of our posts about Rank Math SEO provides 9 reasons we recommend the Pro version. It gives people reasons to switch from other SEO plugins to Rank Math.
Another example is when we list 7 affordable email marketing platforms to try in 2023, it provides options for people who plan to use email marketing platforms suitable for their business needs.
You can explore our reviews and recommendations in the Reviews menu.
The Problem With Dishonest Reviews and Recommendations
There are many reviews and recommendations sites out there. Many of these sites provide a great explanation of how well certain products or services work. But, the problem often happens when it comes to the end conclusion.
Fail to Satisfy Search Intent
Now, imagine you’re looking for product recommendations. You want to find the best monitor for your work-from-home setup. As usual, you’re doing a lot of Google searches for this keyword. Let’s say you finally found three suitable alternatives for your needs.
Here’s the final question you might have in mind:
“Should I buy it or not?”
Can you answer that question? If yes, then you might be reading honest recommendations. However, if you can’t decide, you’re probably reading too many dishonest reviews and recommendations.
In the end, people want to know if they should buy or not buy it. Many reviews and recommendation sites do not answer this question clearly. Instead, they confuse their potential customer with something like:
“If your budget is enough, then go for this product. If you have a limited budget, save your money until the new variant of this product is released.”
“You need to ask yourself. Do you need this product or not.”
It sounds like you’ve heard or read those sentences, right? These kinds of sentences fail to satisfy the search intent. According to Google’s Helpful Content System, it is essential to provide helpful, reliable content with people in mind rather than focusing on SEO to satisfy the search engine.
What do People Need When They Read Reviews?
What people need is a straightforward answer. In other words, a simple YES or NO. However, there is an exception if you’re looking for a product comparison. Or a list of products in the same categories. You’ll need to read through the pros and cons of each product. After that, you can decide which has more pros than cons based on your budget.
A dishonest recommendation will never help you make your decision. Why? Because people who write them have no idea about what they’re recommending. What these people want is to earn commissions through their dishonest recommendations.
To sum up, there are three simple reasons why honest recommendations are the key to successful brand advocacy.
- As a brand, you need customer recommendations to boost your sales.
- Buyers want to read recommendations to help them decide.
- People really need honest recommendations to avoid buyers’ regret.
In the end, people need a straightforward answer when they read a conclusion. A simple yes or no is much better than not answering potential customers’ final question: “Should I buy it or not?”
We want to be the last place for people like you. When you find it hard to decide on buying things from the internet, you can ask us. We will review it and provide a clear conclusion with YES or NO. As simple as that.
Learn How to Write Honest Reviews
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Sugiya is the Writer and Owner of We Recommend. He is passionate about helping people make better decisions when buying things on the internet.