Hey, we all know that business owners think their product or services are the best thing going, but it's what the customers think about it that really matters to you and me. Yep, they're the ones who see things from our point of view...what they have to say about the business has an impact on us.
Testimonials play an important part in advertising - especially for small businesses. Yeah, big businesses with well-known names don't have to worry about it, but small companies can use testimonials as marketing tools to build credibility.
Think about it...how else can we gain credibility than by creating a group of satisfied customers and shouting what they have to say? Let's look at some ways we can make testimonials an effective part of our marketing campaigns.
Collect Them It would be nice if customers just wrote out wonderful testimonials on their own, walked into your business and slapped them on the counter. Yep, that would be too easy...it just doesn't happen that way. So what you need to do is pay attention to your everyday conversations with customers. Set up a file of the positive comments you hear - both in person and on the phone.
Why not fish for compliments? Send your customers and email or postcard that asks them what they think about your product or service. You'll be pleased at the positive comments that are out there just waiting to be netted!
Mix it Up Different things appeal to different people. Yep, it's different strokes for different folks. If you want to catch the attention of a varied audience, use a variety of testimonials. You'll be showcasing a spectrum of benefits that your business generates while putting different “flavors” out to attract a wide range of customer tastes.
Get Specific. I liked this product a lot...is a nice thank you, but tells absolutely nothing to the readers you're trying to capture. Yep, you want to be a little picky about the testimonials you use. Choose testimonials that are specific...I used your product for 2 weeks and now I'm acne free...or I used your weight loss product for 30 days and I'm 14 pounds lighter and feel sexy again...Yeah you want to pick testimonials that will motivate the readers to pick up the phone or get in the car!
Identify Customers Giving the Testimonial How do you feel when you see your name blazened across a newspaper advertisement or across a web page? Yeah, most of us puff up a little bit...you know, the ego thing. Your customers will be happy to let you use their name and comments as part of your advertising campaign and will be only too happy to show it off to friends and family.
Don't forget that when you are gathering permission that the city, state, and occupation of the customer adds interest.
Hey, businesses like to find themselves in print just as much as an individual...a bit of free advertisement, right? If you sell to a business don't be afraid to include their testimonial in your advertisements along with the type of industry and location or anything else that might be of interest to your readers.
Testimonials Should Stand Out Once you've gone through all of the effort to gather up interesting testimonials, you might as well make them shine. Yeah, highlight, use bold text or italics, quotation marks ...whatever it takes to make them outstanding.
Web pages are great for highlighting testimonials. It's easy put them in attention getting colored boxes, or accent with clip art. You might want to even spread them out in groups to add interest to your page.
Think about this...testimonials are like pure gold for marketers. Yeah, the time you spend digging them up definitely pays off. Marketing research has shown that testimonials can increase sales by as much as 250%! Yep...testimonials really are worth their weight in gold!
Who is Allyn Cutts, and why should you care? Allyn has spent over 24 years helping businesses like yours find new customers and increase sales to current customers. Allyn is a marketing and sales fanatic, providing measurable marketing solutions that drive huge results for small-to mid-size business clients. Allyn works personally with clients to design and deliver off-line and on-line direct marketing strategies that focus on metrics and measurable results. You can learn more about Allyn Cutts at www.AllynCutts.com and you can call 610.437.4106 between 10 AM and 4 PM Eastern Time Tuesdays and Thursdays