Let’s face it, we all love to feel like we are valued and appreciated. There is nothing better than receiving an email from a client telling you how you impacted their life and their learning. It is times like this when you feel happy and successful in your business.
The benefits of testimonials are HUGE – especially with everyone doing business on the web. The new verbiage for Testimonial is “social proof” or your “social reputation”.
A good testimonial provides a potential new client with real proof that you actually do great work. Many people think that a testimonial or endorsement from a big celebrity is the way to go. I disagree with that because I think people are looking for the experiences of others who are just like them. They can relate to these people and it validates the testimonial.
Believe it or not, this is why I did not post my testimonial from Deepak Chopra on my site. It just felt too disconnected from my audience. And, although I really respect and admire him, and feel privileged to have helped him, reality is, most of my clients are not of the celebrity stature that he is.
You would be surprised how many people actually check out your testimonials, your Linkedin recommendations and what people are saying about you in other areas online. The web is a wealth of information and you need to do your due diligence to capture the best things that are being said about you.
With this in mind, I want to share with you seven simple tips for maximizing testimonials in your business:
1. Do fantastic work.
If you do a great job and deliver value to your clients, then they will be happy to write a testimonial for you. In fact, don’t just deliver value, try and over deliver on value! Incorporate a little extra so your client feels wowed and really excited and happy about the experience they have working with you.
2. Have Perfect Timing
You always want to ask for a testimonial at the right time. Practice listening for signs that someone really loves what you have done for them and, if you hear them say how much you have helped them more than once, step up and ask them if they’d feel comfortable writing what they just said as a testimonial for you.
Whenever I am asking a client for a testimonial I give athem the option to say no if they don’t feel comfortable and let them know I am totally cool with that. Once you ask – let them do the work, don’t harass them, because then you stand to diminish the good will you have built up with them.
3. Always Practice Sincerity
Be sincere when you ask. Let the client know that you are happy that they have had positive results working with you and let them know that what they have to say could be helpful to other people considering working with you.
Be authentic, and try and avoid pitches like “my business is built on referrals, I would really appreciate you doing this for me” as they take away someone’s desire to do this simply because it is a nice thing to do. When you say things like that, it starts to sound insincere because isn’t almost everyone’s business based on word of mouth to some degree?
4. Write one for someone else!
Duh! You attract what you give – basic law of attraction here – my client Marlene Keys would be so proud of that line. In all seriousness, if you have never taken time to write a quality testimonial for someone else, what makes you think someone should do it for you?
Make a list of 3-5 service providers you have worked with right now and write them a testimonial. Your endorsement will make them feel great and you will have engaged the law of reciprocity. Good things are headed your way! And, if you aren’t sure where to do this, start by using Linkedin and sending recommendations to people there. It’s quick and easy.
5. Pay attention and thank people regularly
This might sound funny but, pay attention to your email, your Facebook, Twitter, and Linkedin comments as well as those on your blog. People are saying great things to you and about you all the time – the question is are you paying attention?
Pay attention and acknowledge them publicly. This act of graciousness will actually prompt other people to respond in kind because they know you are the type of person who truly appreciates it. You always have an audience, start paying attention to what people are saying!
6. Create some Link Love
When you post a testimonial on your website you should always link to the other person’s website. This type of linking allows your reader to easily click through and learn a bit about the other person, creating a win/win situation.
Not only that, the link helps the other person’s SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and adds credibility to the testimonial. It gives extra weight and proof that the person really exists.
7. Leverage what they say on Social Media
On Twitter, one of my secrets to testimonials is use of favorites. I favorite every nice thing people say about me and, if you go to my Twitter Favorite Page, you can see tons of testimonials. This makes it easy for a Twitter user to click and ask anyone who has posted a complementary comment a question about what they have written about me.
The secondary benefit of this page is, if I am having a bad day, I can go there and read all the nice things people have said and I end up feeling better. I like to refer to it as my feel good page!
I love receiving testimonials. I regularly feature them in my newsletter and often feature them on my website allowing the person who wrote the testimonial to benefit from all the traffic I get. I also only ever post testimonials that are 100% true.
You could click through to any person and ask them a question and what is written is exactly what they said. This allows me to reference my testimonials with pride for they are completely authentic.
Next, let me give you some extra help on how to craft your next testimonial. Here are three ways you can make your next testimonial pure awesome:
1. Focus on what you learned, rather than what the other person taught.
2. Talk about outcome or results you gained by working with that person.
3. Make it sincere and authentic.
If this article helped you, please leave a comment below and let me know. Also if you have another suggestion about testimonials that can be helpful, I would love to hear it!