As we all can appreciate, good testimonials help to build brand awareness and social proof, as well as increasing sales and revenue. It’s all part of doing business. Do you know how to get client testimonials and use them in the most effective way? For example, you may be wondering: when’s the right time to ask for testimonials? How can you actually get testimonials from customers? Where’s the best place to share them?
When’s the right time to ask for customer testimonials?
Asking for testimonials from your customers depends on your type of business. So if you’re providing a face-to-face service, for example, then you can ask your customers for a testimonial at the same time. If you’re a retail store then two to four weeks after their purchase is a good time to request a testimonial.
On the other hand, if you offer a project based service, for example you’re a shopfitter or interior designer, then the best time is probably when the project is complete. These are just guidelines, however, because only you will know how long it generally takes for your customers to assess the value of your services or products. If you have no idea on these time frames, however, these are a good rule of thumb.
How do you ask for these testimonials?
You can either ask for testimonials face-to-face or send them an automated email. Plumbers, electricians, builders, interior designers, and landscapers, for example, can all ask their customers for a testimonial face-to-face at the end of the job or project.
Ecommerce stores and other online stores can also send automated emails to their customers. There’s no hard or fast rule however, because tradies can just as easily send an automated email two weeks after they send the invoice, and retail stores can take either approach. It really depends on the business and what works best with your processes.
You can also remind your customers if they seem to have forgotten. So if a customer has agreed verbally to write a testimonial, you can send them an email to remind them and even offer a discount or other incentive to follow through. Just remember not to rush your customers to give you a testimonial before they have had time to appreciate what they’ve purchased. And also be wary that the incentive to leave a review may be construed as a payment for a good review, so ensure your wording to the customer is clear that they’ll receive the incentive no matter what review they leave.
As far as the format of testimonials is concerned, you can ask customers to send them to your business email, complete a survey (SurveyMonkey is a good option), send in videos, write on Facebook, Instagram, Google, Yelp, TripAdvisor or any other social media or customer review platforms. Of course, you probably won’t be inclined to ask for a testimonial if the job didn’t go well or a customer is troublesome in your store, because whilst constructive criticism is useful, you don’t want to encourage negative testimonials! (By the way, we can actually help automate that process to only request a testimonial from happy customers, if that’s of interest to you.)
Can you make it easier by using customer testimonials samples?
You sure can! You have to remember that writing a testimonial for a business isn’t everyone’s forte. You may consider providing free testimonial examples, showing existing customers’ sample testimonials for services, or even providing a quick guide about how to write a testimonial.
You may even consider looking up your competitors online to see which of their customer testimonials were the most impressive, and then you’ll have ready-made examples of testimonials for business that you can easily put into a quick template for your customers.
Whatever you can do to make it easier for your customers is going to help generate more testimonials for you.
Where’s the best place to show customer testimonials?
Your website is a great place to start sharing these positive testimonials, because you can add them to the home page, as well as on individual product pages. You can even have an entire page of reviews on your website.
Your social media sites are another great platform for sharing these testimonials, and if customers write directly to these sites, just review them before they go live. You can even include them in your hardcopy marketing materials, as well as your online and email marketing campaigns. Social proof is very powerful, which is why it’s worth putting the effort into obtaining these testimonials.
Hopefully you can now see how to ask for testimonials, how to provide your customers with examples of great testimonials, and how to put them to use.