Kaplan International is known as the world’s language school — a well deserved claim to fame after 80 years empowering international students to build connections and catalyze new opportunities through top caliber English language courses, offered globally across more than 30 schools.
Although they’re known far and wide, the team at Kaplan International understands that no matter how big their name, quite a bit of consideration goes into purchasing any kind of educational course — whether it’s evaluating the financial investment, or even the opportunity costs of traveling to a particular school.
On top of these decision-making factors, past consumer research from Trustpilot shows that 87% of learners cite the online reputation of the school as very important to their decision-making process — with only 1% of learners saying that online reputation of an institution was not at all important to them.
To enhance their brand reputation even more, Kaplan International looked to Trustpilot for help creating a feedback loop with their customers. They knew this would allow them to not only boost customer satisfaction, but also parlay their positive feedback into powerful social proof marketing — and ultimately, a glowing online reputation.
Interested in how they did it?
We recently spoke with Vincent Lau, Head of Performance Marketing & CRM, and Ben Walton, Performance Media & CRM Executive at Kaplan International to better understand how they incorporate Trustpilot into their stellar customer journey.
The first step is collecting reviews.
So, how did Kaplan International build a critical mass of customer feedback?
One of the best ways to open a dialogue and tap into the minds of your customers is to get the online reviews flowing. So the team at Kaplan International decided to add Trustpilot to their student exit survey, which every student receives once their course concludes.
On the last page of the exit survey, students are presented with an option to fill out an online review through Trustpilot. If they choose to review right away, great — if they don’t, they’ll automatically receive an automatic review invitation through the Trustpilot platform after a bit of time has gone by.
On top of that, every student gets enrolled in an alumnus lead nurture series once their course concludes. The team at Kaplan International also use this touchpoint to encourage past students to review their experiences on Trustpilot.
This method of review collection has worked wonders for Kaplan International, and they’ve managed to increase their monthly review collection by 70% on average.
That’s a lot of valuable feedback.
When you increase your engagement with reviewers, your Trustpilot Customer Satisfaction Score is sure to thank you
This new influx of reviews has led to plenty of opportunities for Kaplan International’s Customer Care team to wow their customers.
No matter the review sentiment, someone from the Customer Care department follows up ASAP to either thank the student for the kind words, or reply to a negative review with any necessary customer care processes for the situation.
The Customer Care team then uses Trustpilot Analytics to track improvements in their Customer Satisfaction Score. By following up and making their customers feel heard, the Customer Care team watched the needle move from 20 to 70 month over month.
That’s a 250% increase in customer satisfaction, just from creating a feedback loop with their customers.
The simple act of responding to reviews not only leads to better customer satisfaction, but it also creates a long lasting (and prosperous) brand affinity between customers and businesses.
Replying to all reviews is seen as a mark of transparency and openness — two key signifiers of a trustworthy brand reputation. As it turns out, a trustworthy brand reputation is invaluable because today, 90% of consumers are ready to walk away from a business with a poor reputation — but Kaplan International has anything to worry about on that front.
It’s clear to see that customer satisfaction and a trustworthy brand reputation go hand in hand. But they can also lead to powerful opportunities for customer advocacy and social proof marketing.
Satisfied customers make great brand advocates, and customer advocacy makes great ad creative
With all these kind words from their customers, adding positive customer testimonials and Trustpilot’s third-party trust signals to their marketing materials was a no brainer — after all, 87% of shoppers find ads and marketing materials more trustworthy when they show off third-party validation from Trustpilot.
With that in mind, the marketing team at Kaplan International made sure to sprinkle some social proof and trust signals into their assets for paid campaigns on Facebook:
In their Instagram stories:
And they didn’t miss an opportunity to create customer confidence right on their site, to make sure they were communicating trustworthiness at every phase of the buying journey.
They also added a Trustpilot widget to their contact form to reinforce customer confidence in the brand:
And they even enhanced their CRM blocks and site footer with Trustpilot claims:
Adding customer reviews to important pages on your site is one of the best ways to build up customer confidence at the right times leading up to the purchase.
That’s because online reviews and customer testimonials play a huge role in the Zero Moment of Truth, one of the key decision-making moments in online purchases. Studies show that potential customers are 105% more likely to purchase after interacting with reviews or trust signals on key pages in the purchasing journey.
When positive customer commentary becomes a better brand reputation
Of all the benefits the team at Kaplan International has enjoyed since joining Trustpilot, they’ll be the first to tell you that strengthening their brand reputation has been a highlight.
Thanks to their improved customer satisfaction and all of the positive feedback they’ve collected, they can confidently show off the claims of their happy customers, which helps them back their 97% student satisfaction rate from internal studies — and remove any shadow of a doubt that Kaplan International is a globally trusted brand.
This is paramount to their (now accomplished) goal of becoming the premium choice of education, and they credit Trustpilot for that achievement.
And while we appreciate their kind words, we believe this achievement is all theirs — for recognizing the opportunity to create a feedback loop with their customers and ultimately become a better business.