So why don’t more business owners incorporate testimonials into their marketing strategy?
Well, the trouble with testimonials is that really great ones are hard to come by. And that’s because, when asked to supply one, most clients just don’t know what to say.
Even your most satisfied customer has probably never sat down and dissected exactly how you’ve helped them or why they value working with you so much.
A great testimonial needs to help your audience overcome their concerns about giving you a shot. They need to be able to relate the story to their own situation and understand instinctively how you might be able to help them.
A generic, “X is a wonderful and generous human being” might do something for your ego, but it’s never really going to get the job done business-wise.
For that, you need details and specifics. And the only way to get those is to take matters into your own hands.
Wait. I’m not suggesting for a second that you write your own testimonials. But… you could take some of the pressure off your clients by, instead of asking them to supply one already written, ask if they’ll answer a few carefully crafted questions that will provide the raw material for you to shape a testimonial for them to sign off on.
That way you can be sure of a testimonial that covers all the important bases and tells the story your business needs to tell. And if you develop the process into your relationship strategy, you’ll have a steady stream of fresh testimonials to work with as you move forward.
How to ask for client testimonials
So what should the testimonial questionnaire look like? I’m glad you asked.
STEP 1: UNCOVER YOUR CUSTOMER’S DESIRE
Every story needs a beginning. Find out what drove your customer to you in the first place.
Q. When you came to <work with me / take my course / buy my product> what did you want that you didn’t already have?
Q. What was it that you REALLY wanted to achieve?
Q. How would achieving that make you feel?
Q. Why did you choose me, and how did you think I could help?
STEP 2: ESTABLISH THE CONFLICT
Add some drama. Find out what might have happened if they hadn’t found you.
Q. What was standing in your way of getting what you wanted?
Q. What were the stakes? If you’d stayed where you were, what would the consequence have been?
STEP 3: TALK ABOUT THE JOURNEY
The journey to somewhere worthwhile is never easy. Don’t ignore the bumps in the road.
Q. What hesitations did you have about <working with me / taking my course / using my product>, and were they founded?
Q. Describe the journey we’ve been on. What has working with me been like?
STEP 4: IS IT A HAPPY ENDING?
Finally, establish how your customer has benefitted because of the relationship.
Q. What was the outcome of <working together / taking the course / using the product>?
Q. How do you feel now?
Q. What would you say to anybody considering <working with me / buying from me>?
Frequently Asked Questions About Testimonials
I’ve also got a few frequently asked questions about testimonials because these really are your bread and butter and I want to bust any queries you've got.
Q. Where should I share testimonials?
Everywhere you can, your website, your social media, proposals, on sales pages, your email signature, your lead magnets. Anywhere there’s space, you should share testimonials.
Q. Why are testimonials so important?
A. I'm glad you asked. If there’s one guaranteed way to improve your conversion rate, this is one strategy that will help you do that. Whether it’s sales conversion, signups, growing your email list, testimonials are pure gold.
Q. Testimonials versus reviews.
To me, these are same-same but different. A review might refer to someone leaving stars and comments on your Google My Business Page, Facebook, or some kind of review site such as Trustpilot. Testimonials are still written reviews but you need to look for them. They’ll be in social media comments, when a client has texted or emailed you to say thank you and how happy they are with results they’ve had, comments on your live webinar, and so on.
Q. I’m just starting out, how do I get testimonials?
The legit question I hear quite often. You can offer your service, product, program at a reduced rate, or even free in exchange for a testimonial. If you’ve got a product in beta, asking for feedback is a great way to go about getting testimonials.
Q. How many testimonials should you have?
As many as you can. You should ask all your clients, your email list, your followers, your Facebook group for testimonials. Why not at least 10 testimonials for every year you’re in business as a starting point.
I am going to have a lot more on testimonials and reviews in my Clients Like Clockwork program, such as plug and play email templates and more questions to ask to supercharge your testimonials. And if you missed the last post on Content Marketing Strategy, you’ll definitely want to skip back and make sure you’re getting mileage out of your marketing content. Getting great testimonials from your clients must be a part of your strategy!
Hey, before I sign off. If you’ve enjoyed this content (and I’ve got loads more for you) I'd love you to leave me a review! But actually, there’s something really special and important I want to squeeze in….
It’s a big word. We all want business growth, and a lot of us are working super hard for it. Sometimes, we’re full of enthusiasm, making sales, growing. Then that foot comes off the gas and all of a sudden, there it is.
The dreaded slump.
I’ve been in that slump myself, and it sucks.
That’s why I created my new Club for business owners.
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It’s called the Clarity & Consistency Club because that’s all it takes to stay on track.
Membership includes access to a bunch of key templates, tools, resources including all my mini-workshops and courses. But that’s not the best bit!
There’s a club coaching call every two weeks to stay the course, go over any problems and leverage the kind of accountability we all need from time to time.
Hey, I could even check in and hold your feet to the fire with your content strategy and collecting testimonials!