The four types of testimonials that get results…

In my previous blog, I gave you a simple overview of testimonials. Today we’re going to dig a little deeper.  In fact, I am going to let you in on a secret that most people don’t know:  There are four types of testimonials and each are used to overcome different objections that potential customers may have.

1.  Benefits:

  • Apprehension to trying a new product/service is a normal reaction, especially in this tight economy.  Many people have to watch how and what they spend their money on, so often they stick with what they know.  With this type of testimonial though, people are not only seeing others buying your product/service but also their opinion.
  1. Objections:
  • When it comes to trying a new product/service, people are not only looking for benefits.  They are also looking for flaws or problems current customers may have experienced.  Nothing is perfect in this world – this includes your product/service.

Example: “I was hesitant on hiring Shannon because she was new to being a Virtual Assistant.  Shannon put my mind at ease by suggesting doing marketing strategy report as a test.  This impressed me because she knew there was hesitation in hiring a new person.  I am so glad she was willing to put herself out there because hiring her was the best thing I did.”

  1.  Personality:
  • This type of testimonial takes the focus away from the product/service and puts it on YOU.  It is important for a potential client to see
    the personality behind the product/service.  It’s like an instant referral for a potential client to see why other clients chose you.
  1. Case Studies:
  • The previous testimonials are so important for potential clients but this one adds the icing to the cake.  Not only are you giving them testimonials but also solid facts about your product/service.  Potential clients want to see upfront exactly how your product/service will further their business. 

I want to share a story with you.  A manager of a very successful restaurant knew the importance of a positive testimonial.  Before every shift, this particular restaurant manager would share these words with his entire wait and hosting staff.  There was not one shift meeting where he did not end with these
words:

“All it takes is ONE negative dining experience to effect daily business in the restaurant industry.  We have ONE chance to show them why we are their top choice when it comes to dining out.  Think about how many people ONE dining guest knows.  For every person this dining guest knows, will equal a negative opinion about our restaurant. It will not stop there because the people told will then tell another person.  Any time after that, if someone mentions our Restaurant that one negative experience will come to mind.”

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The Best Way To Get New Clients —

Testimonials are THE best way you can sell yourself and sell your business AND ultimately get new clients.  And the beauty is you are not the one doing the selling, your customers are. And believe me there is no better way than to have other people sell you. Why?

Having testimonials will build your credibility and your believability.  They create support for you and your business. And if you have a great product or a service you totally deserve these kudos from having testimonials.

What are testimonials going to do for you?  Let’s say you have a prospect that is hesitant to buy or they’re nervous about giving you their hard-earned money. A great testimonial is going to overcome both of those issues.  It’s going to reduce their anxiety and create excitement for them to buy from you when they actually can see what you’ve done has helped others.

Is there a difference between feedback and testimonials? Yes. They do overlap and both are great for your business. However, feedback is a more informal way to obtain information on your product or services. Maybe you have a comment section on your web site or encourage your customers to send you comments via email. This information is always helpful to you with plans for new products or services and goals for the future.

Testimonials are more structured. There are certain elements crucial to a terrific testimonial.  Obviously they have to be believable, so you don’t want them to be too outrageous and too out there. They can address an objection. They can address the benefits of your products or services. They can be case studies. They can talk about your character or your personality. They have a specific outcome.

And about a specific outcome, I want you to be aware of the FTC guidelines that came out last year.  There are specific guidelines on how you can write your testimonials, especially if your testimonial is based on specific outcomes people have received by using your product or service.  I would totally recommend getting the report written by Peter Hoppenfeld about FTC testimonials. Read it and get to know it so you know better how to use testimonials in your business.

An obvious way to get testimonials for your business is to do a quick survey. Always ask for their full name.  My rule is ask for as much information as you can.  Their full name, their city, their state.  Ask for their website, their business name, if they have an occupation or their job title. The more information you have about your testimonials, the more believable they will be for you and for the people who read them.

Tune in next week to read about the different kinds of testimonials.

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