In an increasingly competitive consumer electronics industry, brand sentiment has become imperative for brands who want to remain ahead. A major part of brand sentiment involves customer reviews, which have steadily become more influential over customer purchase decisions over the years. In fact, 93% of consumers say that reviews influence their purchase decisions, and 91% of buyers aged 18-34 say they trust online reviews as much word-of-mouth recommendations. The bottom line? What customers say about your brand’s products and customer support online is not only visible to consumers making buying decisions, but also plays a major role in your brand perception.
Recognising that customer reviews speak volumes, a global consumer electronics brand approached DAC to help develop a strategy to not only improve the overall volume and star ratings for customer reviews, but also cultivate a fluid process that continually generates new opportunities within the pipeline for review acquisition.
In addition to the challenge of increasing reviews and review composition, the strategy also considered how to improve sentiment for each phase of the customer journey. This required an evaluation of the current state’s process and governance to determine what factors of the current process could be strengthened to better support review responses, provide customers with consistent, high-quality support, and continue to improve the client’s product and support reputation.
Eager to get to the drawing-board, our teams leveraged three audience segments—aligning on commonalities and capitalising on nuances—to develop a strategic review and ratings plan customised to each line of business’s individual review needs, finding resolutions for their unique challenges while maintaining a unified brand voice and approach.
We developed a review-acquisition strategy led by audience insights by exploring their customer journey and experience, from product purchase to review time. This required building upon first-party CRM data with insights from global web index (GWI) to create a well-rounded buyer persona for each product line. Understanding user habits and the client’s unique customer touch points was essential for a strategy aimed at cultivating a positive, nurturing customer experience at every turn.
Like a well-oiled machine, each piece of the strategy informed and strengthened the next. The acquisition strategy indicated who our audiences were and where we had the greatest opportunities to reach them across the digital landscape; it also helped uncover audience needs throughout the process, allowing us to hone in on the timing of review solicitation, incentivisation messaging, and other supportive offerings that helped cultivate a positive sentiment towards the electronics brand.
Utilising a multi-disciplinary approach, we engaged our Proove Intelligence team (DAC’s digital analytics center of excellence) to conduct further analysis on the review text. Without extensive metadata, our analytics team extracted insights from the review text collected on the brand’s website. The reviews offered a view into how, and more importantly when, customers experienced issues with their products. Rigorous text mining and analysis gave our teams a probabilistic estimate of when issues are likely to occur after time of purchase for given product categories. This critical set of aggregated, real-world data underpinned a data-driven timeline of customer concerns informed our team as to what message they could proactively relay to which customers in anticipation of product issues.
Using this data helped illuminate organisation-specific needs like a moderator playbook and messaging guide to support moderators in providing quality responses across the client’s digital ecosystem.
From the moderator playbook and messaging guide, we evolved the governance process to provide clear visibility, alignment, and direction on the roles and responsibilities involved in providing an excellent standard of customer support—an aspect that unified all audience groups as the most significant driver of brand affinity and positive sentiment. The governance guide provided a singular North Star to guide the review strategy, uphold best practices, and ensure alignment across all responsible parties. From that point on, customers received a timely, on-brand response that worked to resolve their concerns while raising sentiment for the electronics brand.
Similarly, understanding which features of products were celebrated and when they were likely to gain positive reviews informed how and when customers could be engaged to elicit a positive review submission.
Lastly, CRM data was analysed to understand the change in customer base and product mix in order to set meaningful targets for reviews by category. Weekly performance was captured and presented to all key stakeholders in a customised, automated performance reporting dashboard.
This acquisition and governance strategy had a positive and immediate impact for the electronics brand. The lines of business that participated in the review acquisition strategy saw dramatic improvements within just one month of activation, including a 100% increase in review volume.
The moderation, messaging framework, and governance suite also yielded positive results for the quality and timeliness of responses for customer support, which supports the goal of improving brand sentiment. Review responses and moderation saw substantial improvements comparing quarterly data for response volume and timing.
Average star rating rose from 2.7 to 4.2 in the first month
Review responses rose from 25% to 97%
(Q3 2020 vs. Q3 2021)
Average review response time decreased from 52 days to just 21 hours
(Q3 2020 vs. Q3 2021)