How do I get the best out of my testimonials?
78% of consumers will trust peer reviews but only 14% will trust a company’s marketing or advertising materials. What a consumer is buying is a promise. We are promising to solve their problems in a better way than they can solve themselves. Ultimately, because they’re buying a promise, they’re looking for proof. Proof that we will deliver the outcomes they need from our delivery of the service. Sadly because service is intangible, client can’t feel, touch or see it.
As a result, the client is looking for other cues so they can put value on the service offered. Testimonials are a fabulous way for us to differentiate ourselves. They attest to the value our clients see in us. They show what they have received from us. There are, however, two challenges in obtaining useful testimonials. The first challenge centres around how to ask a client to give a testimonial. The second challenge is how to ensure the testimonial differentiates your service form others. “She was great”, “He was fantastic” or “I’d use them again”, does not adequately cover your point of difference. It is not persuasive. To have pulling power, testimonials need to clearly articulate “What you said and did that led your clients to believe that you were fantastic?” What led your clients to believe that “You were great”?
I have found the secret to getting good testimonials – a testimonial that clearly articulates what makes you different. Just follow these 3 steps!
Step 1. Don’t ask your clients to write a testimonial. Instead, book a telephone appointment with them and then ask or talk about:
1) What are the benefits they’ve received by using you (get at least 3 or tree or 4 examples)
2) What were your skills that they thought were valuable? What outcome did they achieve?
3) If they were to refer you to a friend, what would they say about you?
These answers are vital for a client’s testimonial as they provide layered information. Although the information looks similar there are subtle, important differences.
Step 2. Using your client’s words and not yours, take that information and draft a testimonial.
Step 3. Ring them and explain how you used their comments to draft a testimonial and ask them if they would be happy to endorse it for you. Forward the draft copy to them for approval. This is your client’s testimonial. It will be a business winning client testimonial. It is guaranteed to differentiate you from your competitors.
We have an intangible service so testimonials are invaluable in providing certainty to potential clients. Peer reviews are a proven source of trusting referrals. I would love to hear more about YOUR testimonial gathering experience, or any feedback you have relating to these tips.