Business information written specifically for newspaper advertising departments

I Will Review You

When you flash your ReviewerCard at a business that participates in the online review process, you tell the establishment that you wield power and aren’t afraid to use it.

Reviews are vital to a business’ success nowadays, which puts those who review businesses in a unique and important position. Consumers have the ability to trump up or derail a business’ public appearance significantly, yet some consumers still receive substandard service. Self-proclaimed, “lifelong entrepreneur” Brad Newman, has developed something that can help tell a business that you mean business — the ReviewerCard.

When you flash your ReviewerCard at a business that participates in the online review process, you tell the establishment that you wield power and aren’t afraid to use it. Newman confesses he’s even had hotel bills cut in half and scored free breakfasts just by offering, or threatening, to write a review. The card is simply symbolic, however, as there is no way for a business to guarantee that a consumer will write a positive review when he leaves. Regardless, Newman says that at $100 per card, they quickly pay for themselves; he has sold roughly 100.

Now, there are ways that you can use Newman’s ideas, even if you don’t want to hawk $100 cards, or threaten your advertisers with increasingly empowered customers. Why not create a section in your paper that features non-biased reviews of local establishments? By doing so, you allow your advertisers to get some free publicity by doing a good job, and you allow local consumers to sound off on their experiences.

Or, for a new revenue idea, create a section in both your paper and your online version that allows local consumers to create an account for access to reviews and coupons. Local businesses can upload coupons for consumers to use once they’ve written a review. If you really want to go “whole hog,” give this service a paid subscription option, which offers higher discounts than the free version. You can even upsell it to give your circulation revenue a boost. Consumers will get great deals, and local businesses will keep their numbers up and continue to advertise with their favorite local newspaper.