When it comes to giving people the confidence that you as an entrepreneur rock at what you do, there’s nothing quite as powerful as other people saying that you rock.
In other words: Testimonials.
It’s a simple fact: as soon as someone else stands up and says: “I bought that, it was worth it”, referrals and sales instantly go up.
In the marketing world, they call it social proof, and it’s a tried and tested way to grow your business.
The difficulty is getting those testimonials: not every happy client takes the time to write, or if they do it’s “Awesome job, thanks!” – which isn’t very usable.
And you can’t go fabricate testimonials: it’s illegal in many countries, and besides – it’s not at all ethical to write them yourself.
So how do you get people’s comments in writing, and in such a way that it will attract new clients to do business with you?
Simple, with my three steps to client-getting testimonials:
Step 1: Ask immediately
The best moment to ask – yes, simply ask – someone to write a few lines of comment about your work is when they’re in a happy mood, satisfied with their purchase.
So as soon as you receive a positive email, or when they shake your hand and thank you, reply with something like:
“Thank you for the kind words, I appreciate it. Can I ask you a quick favour – would you be willing to write a few words about your experience with us?”
You’ll find that people will respond very positively, and that many people will do you the favour, provided you time your question right.
After all, they like you, they’re happy with you, they want you to do well – so they’ll be happy to help out and write a few words.
Step 2: Ask the right questions
If you say: “Could you write a testimonial for me?”, you don’t know what you’ll receive: it might be a long raving story without a clear point. Nice, but it doesn’t tell a reader what they need to know about you.
Don’t forget: the type of testimonial you put on determines what kind of client you attract.
So, ask directive questions, such as: “How would you rate our service on a scale of 1 to 10, and why do you choose that number?”
Or: “What was the biggest surprise or best part about working with us?”
“In your opinion, how could we improve our customer service/product?”
“Lovely to hear you’re happy! Was there anything missing, could we do even better next time?”
Step 3: Use the testimonials!
So many ways you can use people’s comments to show others why your work is good:
– Stick a short and punchy one in the sidebar on your website, and/or take a quote and put it in the header
– Create a beautiful page on your site and paste them all in, and put a link to it in the top menu bar
– Mention testimonials when communicating with prospects by email, for example: “In case you have any doubts, you’ll see from our testimonials that we […. fill in your forte….]”.
– Use them to write a blog post – your client gives their opinion, and you explain the work you did for them and how you tried to deliver quality: it’s like a mini-case study,
A final thought: Make sure you have permission to use people’s full names and even better: their website address. A “headless”, anonymous testimonial is counter-effective and will reduce trust instead of increase it.
Now I must tell you about a brand new service I’ve started, called Video Open Day.
It’s a completely new service, where you spend one full day with my own professional director and makeup artist.
You’ll be recording and editing under our guidance, and at the end of the day you go home with two brand spanking new videos, ready to spread round and hopefully go viral.
Read the details HERE.