Top tips to writing product reviews

Snakes and Ladders ReviewI’ve written a few posts from the point of businesses working with bloggers, but I am well aware that it’s increasingly popular to ask businesses to review products for you.  I’ve reviewed products on my Mummy Moo’s Blog as have Charlie and Megan. I only review things that I need, like or would find useful.
I try and keep it to a minimum – 1) readers will soon switch over if you are constantly posting reviews and have no real content. 2) it can be a nightmare trying to juggle all the reviews so that you don’t do point 1 but you also don’t leave it too many months before you review!
Here are some top tips for writing reviews :-
  • Be honest, if there is some thing you dont like about what your reviewing, say so! I hate reading perfect reviews” – Elaine Canvas Pretty and to be honest nobody really gains from this.
  • “If you are going to be critical be constructive – say what is wrong but give examples of how it can be changed.” Mellissa –  The Diary of a Jewellery Lover – this is a really valid point, it maybe that something you don’t like is something your reader loves and also how can the brand improve, develop, move forward with out knowing why or how.
  • Add lots of imagery to show the product you are reviewing” – Emma TheMiniMesAndMe – this is really important and something that Kara – ChelseaMamma does well is photographing products continuously when they arrive/how she puts them together/ in use/out and about/ months after she has reviewed them – on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram.
  • Katie “I like to see reviews that give the product in the blogger’s own words rather than quoting or rehashing the press releases” from Signal Failure at Victoria
  • Set a limit to reviews – If you don’t want your blog to become overwhelmed with reviews, set a limit to how many you will say yes to. This depends on how often you post – if you blog 4-5 times a week then a couple of well-chosen reviews in that mix won’t overwhelm. I only post on here about once or twice a week so about 3 reviews a month is enough for me.” Joanne Joanne Mallon
  • Keep the layout the same – I like to give mine a rating out of 10 at the end and say why and if necessary/appropriate ask the children/Daddy Moo their opinions.

If you are interested in reviewing products and services on your blog – check out sites like Bloggers Required, following brands you like on Facebook and Twitter is also useful there are occassions when requests for reviews will come up.  Make sure you have a disclosure policy on your website/blog – so PR companies know you are open to this and ensure you are easy to contact.

15 Comments

  1. September 25, 2013 / 5:41 am

    I find if it’s not very good I use a praise sandwich – unless it’s truly awful! What is good, what is not so good and how it could be better. Some PRs don’t want you to publish if it really is rubbish do it’s a tough one!
    Kara recently posted..Ben & Holly Personalised Book ReviewMy Profile

    • September 29, 2013 / 5:47 pm

      hehe not heard of a praise sandwich since my teaching years! But very true 🙂

  2. Melksham Mum
    September 30, 2013 / 12:15 pm

    I have done only done a few reviews but these tips are useful, hopefully for future reference!
    Melksham Mum recently posted..Musing on a Monday {Grandparent tax}My Profile

  3. September 30, 2013 / 8:15 pm

    Good tips, will bear them in mind 🙂

  4. Aly
    October 1, 2013 / 8:34 am

    I can’t understand why some bloggers get nervous when posting a negative review? I’ve known some bloggers not to post at all if their review is negative.That’s the whole pint of reviewing, to give feed back.
    Aly recently posted..FrOctober 2014- A Year OnMy Profile

  5. October 1, 2013 / 11:35 am

    All good tips Joanne! I always like seeing products in action, and hearing about any specific things that stood out, good or bad. I think as well that’s it important to be professional about it – agree beforehand if you want to set a deadline for the post going live, stick to this, and maintain good communication throughout with whoever has sent you the product.
    Slummy single mummy recently posted..REVIEW: A day out at Cadbury WorldMy Profile

  6. October 1, 2013 / 10:47 pm

    Great advice, thanks Joanne – I’m often mildly disappointed when a blogger I like writes a review of a product I’m not particularly interested in, but I find the best bloggers manage to make a review personal and entertaining, weaving in a story that engages me despite the selling spin 🙂

  7. October 2, 2013 / 6:41 am

    Good advice. I have written reviews in the past which have been all positive because sometimes I just don’t have anything negative to say but then occasionally something will happen a few weeks / months after first testing the product so I always try to make sure I review it for long enough to find potential negatives now 🙂 x
    Jess @ Along Came Cherry recently posted..Ordinary Moments #3My Profile

  8. October 4, 2013 / 5:18 pm

    I’m also a fan of truthful reviews. I don’t see the point of a blatant advert disguised as a review. If a brand wants to advertise it’s best they pay the going rate for an ad so the blogger can disclose it as such. Some useful tips

  9. October 4, 2013 / 6:01 pm

    Never heard of a praise sandwich! Some great tips, thank you!

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