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Retro Review: A Guide to Asking for Reviews from Past Clients

The very best time to ask for a review is at your customer’s peak level of excitement.

This moment comes just after you’ve completed the job and they get to see those sparkly windows, or remarkably clean carpets for the first time (seriously, they were gross before you got there).

The next best time to ask for a review, is sometime within 6 to 8 months of completing the service.

At the time of publishing this, we are all still dealing with the impacts of Coronavirus. That said, it is as good a time as ever to get in touch with previous clients and see if they would be willing to support your business by leaving a review.

We’re going to look at some ways you can ask for a retro review so you can keep those stars coming in, even if you aren’t serving as many customers during COVID-19.

Plus, if you’re a NiceJob customer, we would like to introduce a new campaign format to automatically contact past clients with a retroactive review request. Easy peasy.

Let’s get started!

How to craft the perfect (retro) review request:

Pick and choose from the elements below to create a slam dunk retro-review request.

  1. Address the client:
    A casual, warm greeting will do the trick. Just be mindful that the person you are contacting (unless you’ve serviced them multiple times) is basically a stranger. This is especially true if you completed the job quite some time ago.
  2. Jog their memory of you/your business/the work you completed:
    Depending on how long it has been since you serviced this client you may have to remind them of all three. If there were any highlights of the work you did at their home or office, address it here. There’s a good chance they remember it too!
  3. Provide a brief status update on your business:
    Mentioning a status update can provide an emotional draw for the client. For instance, it can be worthwhile to mention if you have temporarily closed your doors (due to COVID-19 or, say, during a regular slow season). You could also mention meeting a goal or milestone, for example.
  4. Flash some of that passion:
    This is another way to create an emotional response or connection with your clients. Your review request can be an opportunity to describe your “why” to the client. For instance, if you started your company as a way to serve the local community, then let that shine.
  5. Explain why reviews are so important to small businesses:
    There are many reasons reviews are important to small business owners, like: solidifying your reputation in the local market, boosting SEO, and increasing sales for your business.

    Reviews are one way customers can support small business owners and the local economy with minimal effort and no cost.
  6. Make leaving a review dead simple:
    Providing a review should be super easy for the client. Provide the link to leave a review right in your review request. The easier you make it for the client to leave a review, the more likely they are to do it.
  7. Master the art of the follow up:
    Once you’ve sent your initial review request, draft a follow-up sequence and be ready to send it out at timed intervals. You don’t want to annoy the client, however, a tasteful and positive follow-up request can help you land the review.

    To help understand how your client is feeling about this request, put yourself in their shoes. Consider how you would react if a business reached out for a review 6-8 months after the job. This will help you draft the request and make sure the follow-up communication is sent at appropriate times.

    **Data shows that more reviews are collected with strategically timed follow-ups (all part of the secret NiceJob sauce allowing our customers to win 2X more reviews).
  8. Don’t forget to respond once your client leaves a review:
    Once you have achieved the stars you were hoping for, at minimum you should thank your client for their business and for retroactively leaving your company a review.

    For more, here are some examples of how you can respond to good reviews. And, hopefully you don’t need these, but here are some ways you can respond to negative reviews, should any come up.


We hope you take this time, whether it’s during the Coronavirus pandemic or just a typical slow season, to retroactively reach out to clients for a review of your services. It’s a fantastic way to maintain your reputation and gives your customers an opportunity to become a raving fan!

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