Do your promotional materials encourage people to do business with you?
Often marketing brochures say too much about how great the company is and things that are not that important to the customer. They talk too much about company history and the team. When in reality your customer wants to know less about that and more about how you can help them and why then can trust you to do it,
When growing your business it is crucial to have realistic testimonials.
It is important to find a balance in this as your customer still needs to be shown that you are a good company and that you will what you claim. A good way to do this is to have testimonials from past or current customers. Testimonials strengthen the credibility of you and your business.
Give social proof
Having testimonials gives social proof that other customers are happy with your service and that you can be trusted. In the same way if you were to buy a product online, often you would read its reviews first, customers want verification of your claims before they work with you. You could argue that you could tell the customer just as much, but customer reviews are trustworthy. They are not written by the company promoting the product and are written honestly with their thoughts and opinions. This is all important as they are written by other customers just like them.
Who should it be from?
A good testimonial would usually come from a happy customer. Although this is not always compulsory, testimonials can come from several different people. They just need to be connected to your relationships with business connections and your positive interactions with them. These could be people who have read your online blog etc.
What makes a good testimonial?
A good testimonial is more than just a customer saying why they liked working with you. It focuses on..
What they have got out of your service or product. An ideal testimonial has the benefits of what you are offering as the main subject. When asking for testimonials for a back product, a comment such as ‘This works well!’ may seem positive but does not really tell the customer much, compared to ‘This product made my back pain disappear completely- and fast!’ is much more personal and would be more relatable to what the customer is looking for.
Specific features of the service
What exactly they can expect from your service or product.
Concerns they had before
What they were worried about before, for example if they were worried that it wouldn’t work etc.
Case studies can be even more powerful
An ideal case study is an in-depth feature on how you worked with a customer. It should focus on how the clients has had positive experience from what you are offering and what results you have created. It is important to focus on this as this can carry much more weight than just you saying what you have done.
How to use testimonials and case studies
Encourage customers to write reviews
If you know that your product or services are worthwhile your past customers will too. Asking them to write reviews will mean you get honest feedback and not only will positive reviews stand out to future customers but they can also help you spot potential problems. You can talk to your customers about featuring in case studies and videos. While videos do take longer to make they can be the most effective form of a case study. In a video the testimonial comes directly from the customers mouth and not only this but is quicker to watch than sit and read a long case study, therefore people are more likely to.
Which ones to use
It is important to use only the testimonial that are relevant, having too many can over complicate therefore its good to have a few that are shown more. It is important to choose ones that give a fair representation of your customers and that fit the criteria in ‘What makes a good testimonial’.
Where to place them?
There are many places that testimonials can be displayed. They can be put on your website, brochures, direct mail letters, blog, etc. You can even post them on your social media accounts, for example if a customer tweets you something as simple as saying thank you, retweet it so all your other followers also see it! Share your testimonials and case studies with as many people as possible. This helps in two ways firstly it will strengthen your reputation and serve as a thank you to the customer who wrote it for you.