Why are testimonials critical? When you make a statement about you, your company, your products, or your service, it’s a claim. When your satisfied or enthusiastic customer makes the same statement about you, it’s a fact.
You cannot overuse testimonials. The number one marketing error most business people make is the under use of testimonials. If you do nothing else to improve your marketing, but use testimonials you’ll have a strong competitive edge on your competition.
For Starters, think of testimonials as a pair of verbal “snapshots.” The first is the “before” picture—the problem or the skepticism: The second is the “After” picture—the positive result, the pleasant surprise, the solution.
Second, view testimonials as strategic weapons. Make two lists: one of every claim, feature, benefit, and fact about what you’re marketing that you want to substantiate; second, every doubt, fear, or question that might exist in your prospective customers mind. Then collect and use testimonials that specifically substantiate the claims and eliminate the doubts.
Determine all the objections a prospect will have for not buying your product or service. It could be price, not interested, they don’t want to put forward the effort, they don’t want to invest the time, etc. Whatever the objections you might encounter for people not buying your product or service, gather testimonials that will address each of those objections.
You want a letter with three or four benefits your customer received from working with you. Put the testimonials on the customer’s letterhead it that’s possible. List the customer’s full name and city where they’re located. (If you’re uncomfortable publishing their name get them to sign a short release form stating you have the right to use their name and city. In over 25 years of using testimonials I have never had a business owner or employee object.)
If you struggle getting testimonials then you can write them and get your customer to sign them. The way I’ve done this is to comment to the customer, “Mr./Ms. Customer, you’ve mentioned several times of your happiness with our service/product. I know there are many other people who would love to enjoy the benefits of our product/service if they only knew about it. Would you mind if I place your kind comments on a sheet of your letterhead and shared it with others?
I’ve never have anyone to say “NO.” If you have a good relationship with your customer then you shouldn’t have a problem.
You should use testimonials whenever you can. On brochures, on your web site, in letters you send to customers, on any advertising, even in proposals. You can never use too many testimonials and they’ll boost your sales closing ratio.
If you’re having difficulty getting testimonials let me know and I’ll find out if I can help you become more successful at it. Testimonials are critical for you to establish trust.
Soar With The Eagles
David L. Sims