Testimonials establish you as an expert; they say you deliver what you promised and that you get great results. And if someone is on the fence as to whether or not to hire you or purchase your product, testimonials can actually close the sale. Yet, most companies don’t have a system in place to solicit customer testimonials.

Tips for Successful Customer Testimonial Videos
The first and most obvious place to begin is with your sales team. If you’re not in communication with your sales team, it is unlikely that you’ll know about that happy customer that is willing to recommend your products and/or services. Your sales team might not even realize how capturing that satisfaction can help them close future deals. Customer testimonials are critical to any marketing and/or sales plan. If you’re able to secure that customer as a testimonial, you’ve in effect, just increased your sales force by one—that customer is actually paying you and selling for you.

Let your sales team know that you’re looking for satisfied customers for testimonials. Explain the value to them, and the value to the company, if they seem hesitant. The type of testimonial can be discussed after the customer has said yes—you don’t want to overwhelm them right out of the gate.

During the sales process, it’s obvious the goal is to close a deal, but what might be less obvious to the sales prospect is that you and your sales team want them to be so satisfied with their experience with your company and products, that they are willing to endorse you. If you have any testimonials you’re currently using, let them know that is your goal; you want them to be just as happy with your products or services as that person/company.

Make sure they understand the testimonial process; map it out for them so they understand the time commitment involved and what is expected of them. It is also important to let them know that they’ll have a chance to review, request revisions, and approve anything prior to finalization. Make them as comfortable as possible, since they are considering sticking their neck out for you.

If you’re thinking about a case study testimonial, let them know you’ll be telling their story. The piece will position them as thought leaders in the industry with your products/services being the solution that helped them improve their processes, get ahead, etc. The end product should be something they can add to their portfolio, too; a case study benefits both your customer and you, without any cost to them.

Testimonials are social “proof” that can give your business a solid boost and add to revenues and profits. You can tell people you are great, but it means so much more coming from others. So how do you get your customers to provide the sort of testimonials that will make potential customers come to your business or website and buy? Here are seven tips to help you with the process:

  1. Ask for testimonials when the client is most happy with your product or service. Determine in advance when that usually occurs and make it a point to always ask.
  2. Have a formal system for asking. One of my favorites is to ask clients to fill out a short survey about your services and at the end ask if their answers could be used as a testimonial. You can also ask directly, or send a request by email.
  3. Make sure you have as much identifying information about the person who wrote the testimonial as is possible. Ask for their photo, their full name, their city, their website address. If it’s a business they will be very happy to have you link back to their website. The more information you have, the more believable the testimonial becomes. Testimonials that are signed with just a first name and a city are pretty useless since they look like someone made them up, even if they are legitimate.
  4. Place testimonials on EVERY important web page on your website, not tucked away on a testimonials page that few people see.
  5. Use the same testimonials in printed marketing materials like ads, flyers and brochures.
  6. Show testimonials when meeting with a prospect
  7. Be strategic about the testimonials you request. For example if you are trying to sell a particular product get testimonials that state results people received from that specific product (or service). Ask people who have purchased the product specific questions that relate to the benefits they received and the problems your product solved.

Of course, it goes without saying that your product or your service must be good to get the testimonials you want, so be sure that you under promise and over deliver. The idea is to thrill them so much they will be glad to write rave reviews for you!

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