To be honest, I haven’t been very good at writing reviews over the years. In fact, I usually only take the time to write one if it’s a product or service that I loved or hated. I’ve written a few 1-star reviews, and I’ve written several 5-star reviews, but I can’t even think of the last time I wrote a 2-, 3- or 4-star review.
The truth is that it takes time to sit with our thoughts and transform them into words. Our time is one of our most protected resources, after all. But as a new author, I’ve come to understand the value of reviews for a couple of reasons.
For one, reviews provide businesses (and authors) with valuable feedback about their products and services, helping them better understand what exactly their customers liked and didn’t like about it. These comprehensive reviews often bring suggestions for improvements, helping companies look at new solutions they may never have considered before. In short, reviews help companies become better companies, innovators become better innovators, and writers become better writers.
Just like performance reviews in the workplace, the overall value of a review is that it provides an in-depth assessment of actual performance compared to expected performance. When we buy products or services, we have certain expectations about how they will perform, or what we will gain from them. For this reason, reviews usually include thoughts and opinions about overall performance, perceived value, or both.
Secondly, reviews provide social proof that a product or service is worth the investment. Peer reviews offer guidance to others who are seeking a solution to a similar problem, helping them identify the best choice when they’re faced with choosing between options. In that way, reviewers provide a meaningful public service.
But how does this relate to self-care? Giving feedback is a form of self-care because it not only forces us to examine our purchases more closely (evaluating whether or not the product or service delivered value as promised), but it also allows us to give back to our community.
Giving feedback comes in many forms, but it typically involves posting an online review, commenting on blogs or other relevant news media, or sharing opinions on personal social media outlets. While face-to-face feedback still happens occasionally, it certainly isn’t as prolific as web-based formats.
So, to those who have taken a moment to provide feedback–to me, or to any other company or author – I want to sincerely thank you for providing your valuable insights. Providing feedback is a thankless act, but one that has immense value to others.
When was the last time you wrote a review?