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December 19, 2022

How to Automate Video Testimonial Collection

Automated customer video testimonials, related to your product or service, increase consumer confidence and optimize your conversion rate exponentially. Let's get you started.

You already know the extent to which your business can benefit from the social proof provided via video reviews. Did you also know that while negative reviews are inevitable - you usually have to ask to increase the percentage of positives? With Invite Video’s automated SMS feature, your patrons are regularly encouraged to share their happy voices allowing you to focus on other day-to-day priorities. Let’s look deeper at how Widewail’s unique process automates the critical process of collecting video testimonials.

As the age old saying goes, a picture is worth a thousand words. In the era of TikTok, Instagram Reels, and YouTube, however - a video marketing strategy has become a must

Generating video testimonials from your customers now has more worth than any tatty Polaroid. Current customer videos endorsing your product or service are more powerful than ever before. That's simply because video reviews tend to be more authentic and helps build trust between you and consumers. And it’s also true that customers are 3X more likely to trust their peers before any of your advertising campaigns.

Capturing Customer Video Feedback 

You love hearing your happy customer’s positive comments, but how can you best capture their sentiment in a way that benefits future prospects? That is, how do we really go about getting quality video reviews from our customers at each and every transaction or opportunity? And what can we do to help ensure a greater number of complimentary reviews?

Should we be using an automated video collection tool or service? What does the recent rise of AI and ChatGPT mean for review response? Should we be manually asking every customer during checkout? And at what stage of the life cycle are these requests most effective?

Picture it now (but it ain’t pretty): you’re standing at the doorway of your business, holding a camcorder from 2010, tapping hurried customers on the shoulder to ask if you can record in the middle of their busy day while they share their positive feedback about your business. And while there are 15 other issues that need your attention. Who has the time for that?

Nobody. And definitely not you. Not today and not ever.

While the best way to collect more video reviews is to ask your customers, it’s unrealistic to go through this process all by yourself, at each and every opportunity. Some businesses choose to hire a film crew to produce professional testimonials. While this can be an excellent strategy, it's an expensive one and might not be plausible in every scenario. What, then, is the best way to ask for a video testimonial from your customer?

Smartphone, Smarter Strategy

For over a decade, your average customer has had 24/7 access to a perfectly good video camera/capture device. The smartphone in your customer’s pocket is 100% capable of quickly documenting how they feel about your product or service, and it’s actually easier and less stressful for them to record themselves.

A video review doesn’t have to be done professionally. In fact, the smartphone style of recording may be interpreted as more authentic and genuine than footage obviously captured through a professional and more expensive lens.

Without hiring a professional crew, there are still many ways your business might collect video reviews (see our Complete Guide to Video Testimonials)

  • Spontaneously. An enthusiastic customer may choose to record their feedback via video and share it with you.
  • Request in-person. Someone on your team may ask customers before they leave your store to record a testimonial. This could be done in a few ways. The customer could film themselves and share the video, or the employee could record the customer for them.
  • Ask via email. Your business will likely already have your customers’ emails. Send them a note after their visit with a request for a video review.
  • Use SMS. Texting your customers with the ask to share a video testimonial increases the odds that they’ll engage with your request. 

These manual efforts will take up a lot of your time, every time. Another solution to get great user-generated content is to use a video testimonial tool or service (Like Invite Video!)

The Easiest Way to Collect Video Testimonials?

Automating the process of generating video testimonials stands out as the easiest and most effective way to collect a larger number on an ongoing basis. Here’s how Widewail does it.

Our latest product, Invite Video, builds off of our existing technology solution, Invite, which helps businesses get more reviews on sites like Google, Facebook, and Yelp. Once your customers complete their transaction at your business, Invite will automatically send them a text with a request to leave a review. And we've streamlined the steps to make it as easy and user-friendly as possible for your valued website or brick-and-mortar visitors.

Invite Video works in a similar way. Through a seamless process, our video testimonial software will text your customers asking them to leave a video review. Instead of using an ancient camcorder or hiring an expensive camera crew, customers can use their personal smartphones to film themselves singing your praises. You’ll be able to collect all that authentic footage on a single platform to use however and wherever you'd like.

How Invite Video Automation Works

Once you enroll in Invite Video, Widewail will integrate with your business’ CRM so that our product is connected to your sales platform. Transactions (like closing a sale) triggers our software to start the video review generation process - and you can customize conversion and transaction types to suit your individual needs.

The process begins with a simple text message to your customers. We’ve discussed the benefits of SMS communication in the past, but it is still the case that texting customers will get you more reviews. With a 98% open rate on average, texts are highly likely to be read. 

Further, SMS works particularly well for video reviews because the customer can easily record their review directly on their mobile device. A simple tap of the texted link takes you to the landing page to leave a video review. There’s nothing else required.

But can you also brand and customize those texts? The answer is: absolutely!

Requests for a video review can be simple: thank the customer for shopping with you, ask if they would be willing to leave a review, and share a convenient link to where they can do so as efficiently as possible. 

A significant difference between Invite and Invite Video is that reviews submitted through Invite post live on review sites, while Invite Video videos are accessible only to your business. Because of this, a submitted video goes into the Widewail app, where you can then review and download the winners.

Advanced Customization with Campaigns and Incentives Engine

Our recently introduced Campaigns feature for Invite and Invite Video enables you to make review requests even more personalized and targeted to support your marketing objectives. Using Campaigns, we can ask only customers who have already left a five star Google review to leave a video testimonial. With this, we specifically target happy customers and also attempt to collect the ultimate endorsement: a text and video review.

Incentives Engine does just that: incentivizes customers to leave video reviews (while staying within the guidelines of Google's "review-gating" warnings), making it even more likely that you’ll collect lots of that precious, high-quality feedback.

Alternatively, we can adjust settings so that only a certain percentage of your customers are asked to leave video reviews. For businesses who also use Invite to get reviews on Google, Facebook, etc., we recommend starting at around 30%. But if your team is focused on video, you could easily change that to 100%, then back down to any number at any time after that.

At this point it's undeniable: automating your video testimonial collection process makes it easier to achieve your business goals. Once you have amassed these videos, the real marketing begins. In our Complete Guide to Video Reviews, we lay out some creative and tangible suggestions as to how to best employ video testimonials in your marketing strategy. 

New Product  Eager to learn how to make video testimonials work for your business? Learn more about Invite Video

Keaton Smith

I’m a writer, philosopher, climber, mountain biker, and a fried-egg enthusiast. Before joining Widewail as a Review Response Specialist, I attended Middlebury College and studied Philosophy and Art History. I grew up in Michigan, but I fell in love with Vermont while in school.

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