How You Can Automate Your Review Replies – Using AI

Unless you’re living under a rock, you’ve likely heard about ChatGPT in the news and on social media. It’s a trending topic that has everyone from businesses to entrepreneurs to influencers talking. That’s because, in just five days, ChatGPT gained over a million users. But what’s so special about it and why are we talking about it? 

ChatGPT is one of many tools created by OpenAI. They also created Dall-E – an AI system that can create images and art from a description using natural language. AI chat tools, like ChatGPT, are nothing new. However, what makes this specific AI so special is how it can respond in natural-sounding language – as if it were a real human. 

And that is why everyone is talking about it. 

AI continues to play an especially important role in marketing. It’s one of the easiest industries to apply AI. For example, if you use webchat or a chatbot on your website, you’ve already adopted AI. Now, ChatGPT is taking things a step further. Because it’s so human-sounding, it can be used to create a variety of content. It was even used to create the outline for this blog. As a result, it has many content marketers reeling. 

Now, the ability to apply AI to the world of reputation and review management is here. While ChatGPT is a powerful, potentially controversial tool within marketing, it and similar tools, are perfect for replying to reviews

Making the Case for Using AI to Automate Review Replies

Replying to reviews is a necessary business task. When researching a business, 89% of consumers read replies to reviews. And 41% of customers say that when brands reply to their online reviews, they feel the company cares about their customers. This translates to trust and higher sentiment towards that brand’s products (i.e. more revenue). 

General advice is to reply to a review within 48 hours, though 24 hours is ideal. Using one templated review reply is a big no-no. So if you’re a busy business owner, a multi-location business like a franchise, or an agency managing a portfolio of brands – this can be tough to stay on top of. 

Using AI to create automated review replies can speed up the review reply process and make your review management strategy more efficient and less stressful. 

AI is perfect when it comes to developing short content like reviews. OpenAI’s tools can take tedious content creation that generally doesn’t require a lot of strategy or thought and create it in a fraction of the time it’d normally take. More specifically, in a reply, it can: 

  • Reference product descriptions or summaries
  • Identify and match the sentiment 
  • Create an automated response that sounds human-like

Just see for yourself. Below is a real example of an automated review reply created in GatherUp using a tool from OpenAI. 

Picture of GatherUp's SmartReply feature

Benefits & Limitations of AI for Automated Review Replies

Replying to reviews is a tedious but critically important task. You may dread the job of reading reviews and thinking of a reply — particularly if a review is a negative one. But it also takes time – time better spent analyzing your reviews for insights. As a result, one of the biggest benefits of automated review replies is the time saved – but there’s more to it than that.

Benefits of AI for Automating Review Replies

  • Saves time: Reading reviews and writing out replies takes time. Automated review replies could potentially save you hours on this activity – especially if the feedback is positive and straightforward. 
  • Crafts better replies: Writing not your strong suit? Automated review replies can help start the writing process and make you sound better.
  • Is less stressful: Replying to reviews can be daunting if you receive lengthy or negative feedback. These kinds of reviews can leave you feeling overwhelmed and unsure how to respond. Automated replies do the hard part, so you don’t have to question yourself or figure out the best way to reply. 
  • Improves timeliness of replies: You can increase your or your team’s response times with automated review replies. It’s easier to jump in and reply to reviews within 24 hours when you only have a button to click. 

While AI has its perks for review replies, there are limitations.

Limitations of AI for Automating Review Replies

AI still can’t connect the dots as humans can. For example, it won’t be able to prioritize what information is most important to your audience or match your brand tone and voice. Additionally, AI isn’t an expert in your product or service the way you are. So any review reply that’s generated should get a once-over before posting. 

What’s Next for AI In Marketing?

ChatGPT, and similar AI tools, shouldn’t be used for long-form content. Nor should it be used to replace people or products. Instead, AI should be used as a productivity tool – perfect for replying to reviews. 

There is talk of ChatGPT becoming a replacement for Google, and if so that would have serious implications for SEO, review management, and how local businesses are found. But we don’t see that happening any time soon. In the near future, we see the use of AI beyond just automating review replies. OpenAI tools can also be used to automate review requests, social posts, image descriptions, meta descriptions, and more. For now, we’re using AI as a productivity tool in our platform to make our customers’ lives easier and more efficient.

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