What a customer says about you and your services has a direct impact on your success or failure. A customer testimonial packs more of a punch than any self promotion or sales pitch.
Why do testimonials work? Testimonials create believability, credibility, and a sense of security for your customer. These stories help to break down the natural barriers and distrust that a first-time buyer may feel towards your industry.
Customer testimonials are considered the best form of “word of mouth” marketing. Here are some suggestions for you and your team:
- Timing is everything. If the performance of the team and the outcome of the project was stellar, and the customer is pleased – now is the time to ask! Don’t wait until later.
- Be specific. When you ask, be sure to ask for the testimonial that you want. For example, if on- time service is a plus with your team – ask the customer if you met this criteria and ask them to respond with a testimonial stating this quality. It’s as easy as saying, “I’d really appreciate it you mentioned how my service team was on time and how we worked within your schedule.” Apply this same phrasing to budget, communication, and cleanliness. This not only helps portray your strengths, but also gives them a framework in which to write something that speaks to potential customers.
- A picture is worth a thousand words. It’s one thing to read their words, but most people are visual and love to see happy customers! If a yard sign is one way in which you market your job presence, ask the customer stand beside it with a big smile and take their picture! Or better yet, have them give you a video testimonial!
- Be sure to ask for their permission. You must have a customer’s permission to publish as testimonial. It is easy to place this “ask” within the initial service agreement document that they customer signs on day one. They may say no, however, this allows you to plan accordingly.
Testimonials, whether used on social media, advertisements, or a company website – it is important that each one is provided by an authentic customer and not overused. As tempting as it may be, you must NEVER pay for testimonials – this tactic supports the cynical consumer sentiment that “you can’t believe everything you read on websites.” The answer is simple and traditional . . . let your customer talk for you and the leads will come!