7 Steps to Securing the 5 Star Testimonials You Deserve

“Word of Mouth is the Best Medium of All.”

A famously accurate quote from a famously successful advertiser; William Bernbach.

Testimonials are your gold dust; they should never be underestimated.

Think about it, how many times a year do you buy or try a service off the back of a recommendation from someone you trust?

People trust people. They are not willing to risk wasting their hard-earned money on inadequate products or services. And there’s several ways you can gather quotes to prove this ISN’T you.

1. Email Signatures

As a Marketing tool, email signatures are often wasted. They mostly include a persons name, email address (which they’ve already got because guess what – you’ve emailed them!), telephone number and web address. That’s all well and good, it needs to be there. But ultimately, they could just as easily Googled your name to get this information, so where’s the value?

An email signature is a perfect place to list a survey link, NPS scoring system or simple ‘Tell us about your experience’ listing. Not everyone will do it, and you might need to direct people’s attention to it, but that’s just life. Even if one in ten people choose to leave their feedback, the numbers soon start to add up.

2. Receipts

For business owners, paperwork just forms part of the process. You do some work for a client; they sign it off and away you go. But we can’t help but feel like that feels like a missed opportunity.

If the customer has got to scribble on a piece of paper anyway, is this not the perfect time to ask for a few EXTRA scribbles? Particularly if you’re stood in front of them (like a tradesman!) they are so much more likely to give the feedback you’re asking for than if you send them an email. Why? Because it’s forms a part of your standard process as they understand it. They check the paperwork. Leave a comment. And sign it off. Away you go, testimonial in hand.

3. Screenshot Social Media Comments

Social media; a public, open domain. Where anyone can say anything and the whole world can see. Scary, but exciting!

Make sure you keep a close eye on what customers are saying about your brand online. You can use tools like SocialMention and GoogleAlerts to monitor conversation around particular key words or phrases. And, if your lucky enough to get some public declarations of love on social – then the quotes are yours to use.

4. Shows and Events

Imagine a room full of your happy customers and clients, all whom sing your praises and already know and like you.

Well, if you run events, attend shows or organise meetings then this is what you have! Invite your customers and KOL’s along and instead of just using it as an opportunity to catch-up or pitch for new work, take a few moments to capture a quote. If you can, get it on video too! Nothing trumps a testimonial like a video-version. Just make sure you give them a heads-up to avoid the classic ‘I haven’t done my hair’ or ‘I haven’t got any make-up’ on excuses!

5. Offer something in return

People love a gift, there’s no two ways about it. And we’re far more likely to do something if there’s a little treat in return.

It doesn’t need to be much, just something to show your appreciation for the efforts they’ve gone to. It could be a discount, gift in the post, voucher, entry into a prize draw… even a scratch card! Whatever works and is relevant for your clients. Just think about what would resonate and help to craft the perfect ‘thank you’ for their time.

6. Help them out

If there’s two things that stops everyone receiving testimonials, it’s time and memory. You’re busy, so you should expect your clients to be too. And even though this testimonial might seem like the most important thing in the world to you right now, it’s certainly not to them.

Instead of asking them to sit down and think about a quote from scratch, why not ask specific questions that help to direct the testimonial you’re looking for? We don’t advocate writing testimonials for people, you want them to be real. But asking specific questions can help clients to manage their thoughts and get them down on paper, like:

“How reasonable do you think the cost of this project was?” or “Did you find our email response rate acceptable?”

Think about what you’d like to know and…

7. …Ask, and quick!

Of course, the easiest way to gather testimonials will always be to just ASK. But it’s so easily forgotten – you’ve finally reached the end of the project, you’ve sent the invoice and you’re ready for the next job! Where you can (and with the right clients) just try to take a moment to remember to stop and ask.

The quicker you ask for feedback, the more likely you are to get it. As soon as you go to the back of a clients thoughts, it’s probably too late.

That’s why adding testimonial-gathering into a part of your formal processes is so crucial – it needs to become second nature!

P.S. – Always remember to get explicit permission to use quotes. If someone has said it, it’s likely they’ll be happy enough for you to repeat it, but don’t risk having this right revoked just because you didn’t think to ask.

Need help with gathering your testimonials? Advennture Design can help. Email us at hello@advennturedesign.com

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