There is little more compelling than having an existing client tell a prospective client about how good your products/services are. This is why referrals are a great way to grow your business. The classic challenge with referrals is their passive nature because the rate at which they occur predominantly sits outside of your control (there are ways to more proactively drive referral behaviour which I’ll blog about separately). Testimonials can achieve a very similar outcome, yet few businesses fully leverage the power of their testimonials.
The reason testimonials are so good at doing the selling for you is because they are “social proof”. This basically means that someone, external to your business, has given you an endorsement. To really hit the” nail on the head” with social proof testimonials you need a photo of the person who gave you the testimonial to use next to the testimonial text, or even better, get the testimonial on video. Using a photo or video makes the testimonial far more “real” which in turn means the reader will resonant with it much more easily.
It is true that not all testimonials will do the selling for you. To be able to do the selling for you they need to be written in a way that helps the reader identify with the experiences of the existing client. The best way to achieve this is by asking your existing client(s) these 4 questions…
- Why did you feel you needed my product/services?
- What was it that made you decide to place the work with me?
- What exactly did I deliver for you/help you with?
- What’s been the outcome of us working together?
For example here’s a testimonials I wrote for Steph Othen Creative
“I wanted to launch a new range of products & services that required an engaging identity to help them stand out from the crowd. I asked Steph to develop the brand and associated imagery as I felt she easily understood my requirements and what I was aiming to achieve through the brand. The end result has been excellent. Steph has designed new business cards, 4-page leaflet, email signature, bannerstands, PowerPoint background and a product wrapper. The design is so eye catching that I have people flocking to my stand every time I exhibit the range which has had a positive impact on the number of leads I have captured from the exhibitions.“
Alternatively I could have written…
“Steph did a great job on my new brand. She was great to work with and I love the outcome. I would definitely recommend Steph to others.”
Steph’s prospective clients are far more likely to resonate with the first version and want to have the same experience themselves.
Unfortunately great, marketing driven testimonials that doing the selling for you rarely fall you’re your lap! The best way to get them is to ask, so which 3 clients are you going to approach today for testimonials?