30 Aug Why Do You Need Testimonials?
Word of mouth is the oldest and most tried-and-true form of advertising. Why? Because it works! A potential client hears positive reviews about your services from someone they trust and they will even cast aside inconveniences to hire you. Unfortunately, word-of-mouth advertising reaches a very limited set of people. How do you broaden your reach and get your message out there?
Enter the testimonial.
Think about your purchasing habits – do you still blindly buy products and services or do you read reviews, ask your Facebook and Twitter network, or put a post in a forum or LinkedIn group asking if anyone has ever used them before?
Testimonials work because they nurture trust. Potential clients know that you’re only going to say positive things about your products and services. They want to be convinced by hearing from someone who has actually tried them. Prospective clients and customers have no reason to trust you, but they do trust their peers. This is called “social proof”.
Make sure your testimonial is believable! A testimonial that sounds fake will destroy trust rather than build it.
Testimonials must be real and valid. This is non-negotiable if you want to be authentic in your business. If you can, include the full name, location and a photo of the person giving the testimonial. Include their business or organization if it is relevant.
Also be sure your testimonial specifically answers any objections, doubts and fears your potential client may have before they have a chance to voice them.
How do you get testimonials?
Keep your ears and eyes open: write down any fleeting comments from a happy client as soon as possible after hearing them. Grab quotes from emails your clients send you, and make sure you ask permission to publish it from the sender.
Ask clients for feedback; it sounds like you want honest comments rather than sugary, fluffy praise.
What do you do with them?
Testimonials can be placed on your website, on your quotes and invoices, in print ads, sales letters, direct mail, or on your Blog. You can even highlight a “success” story of one of your satisfied clients and make them the star of your post!
How do you personally use testimonials in your purchasing decisions? Where do they fall in your decision-making process?