V Formation’s Leah Bradley explains why client testimonials should form part of your marketing strategy and how you can use them effectively to help convert prospects into clients.
Client testimonials can be an extremely powerful marketing tool when it comes to strengthening your brand – they provide the human element by adding tangible confirmation of your selling points.
In today’s digital age we know that consumers are more likely to purchase or make an enquiry from a website if it has good reviews and testimonials from clients who have used your business before. A legitimate endorsement from somebody who has experienced your product or service is one of the strongest signals of trust and credibility and can help to influence and inform new clients who are considering buying from you.
Here are a few tips for gathering strong client testimonials and how to use them effectively:
- Ask! Sounds daft, but how often do you ask your clients for feedback or a testimonial? Put a system in place to automatically ask your clients for feedback at the end of a project or after a purchase has been made. Or ask a select group of clients personally.
- Share the feedback internally. Make sure testimonials are shared internally as well as externally. Give recognition to the individuals or teams involved in the client’s experience with the firm. Use them in internal training sessions and presentations.
- Get permission. Don’t forget to ask your client for permission to use the testimonial in your marketing material and check that they are happy to be referenced and for their comments to be made public.
- Publish them. Look for appropriate ways in which testimonials can be published – on the website, in marketing material, in PR or share on a blog.
- Provide a link back. If you are using client testimonials online, provide a link back to their website or use their logo (with their permission).
- Organise your testimonials. Keep a central bank of all testimonials so they can be easily accessed for use in presentations, tenders and proposals.
- Keep them specific. Gather testimonials for certain teams, products, services or sector specialisms so you have a selection of testimonials that are relevant and resonate with specific target audiences.
- Keep them up to date. Make sure you have a steady stream of up-to-date testimonials and don’t just use the same one or two over and over again.
The power of client testimonials shouldn’t be underestimated in your digital marketing strategy.
With technical expertise as a given, it is increasingly difficult to differentiate yourselves from the competition. Your client testimonials can help you to stand out by sharing them effectively.
Once you’ve gathered your testimonials, here’s how you can take them from good to great:
- Use an image – a photo of the person making the comments, or at least a logo of the company that has used your product or service, not only creates trust and confidence that it is a true statement, but also increases click-through rates. It is a well-known fact in digital marketing that an image is far more engaging than words alone.
- Include a bold statement – capture the essence of the testimonial in a bold heading so that readers can clearly see which products or services you are being endorsed for.
- Create video testimonials – where possible, try to include recorded testimonials. A video adds further credibility that it is a true statement and will also encourage visitors to stay on your website for longer and reduce bounce rates. Learn more about the importance of video here.
- Placement – where you publish testimonials is important. On your website they should sit in a sensible location where they can be seen easily and are clearly endorsing a particular product or service. This could be on your homepage, within specific product or service pages, or a dedicated section that is accessed from the main navigation.