Testimonials show social proof that previous clients have used your product and service and are satisfied or even elated that they did.
Most testimonials are vague and won’t help your prospective clients decide if they should hire you.
"She is so great. I loved working with her!..."
The problem with testimonials is that they can often seem vague and don’t really lend to improving your business. Anyone can get a testimonial from someone saying in vague terms how great you are. They don’t prove that your service or product is worth investing in.
Most people are busy and writing you a well thought out testimonial that supports your business objectives is not on the top of their list. So how do you get quality testimonials that don’t take your former clients a ton of time? You do your prep work. Otherwise, you figure out in the beginning of your interaction with them what their problem is? What are their expectations of working with you? What is their primary goal? Then, after you’ve provided your service or product, follow up with them a little while later. Remind them of the “before” picture, “Before we worked together you were having XYZ problem, did my solution resolve this matter for you?”
Remind them of the progress you have attained for them in a conversation before asking for a testimonial. By having this discussion prior to requesting a testimonial you will have created an outline for them to discuss – easier for them to write and more useful for you!
Remember to follow-up!
Touch base with your clients a few months after your work with them is over. You can do this by setting up an email segment group in your email marketing program of choice. Add them to the list of completed clients to trigger a follow-up email. Write it like a normal email, no sales jargon or graphics. Ask them how’s your XYZ product working for them. Having a stockpile of testimonials for your website will reduce your legwork in the future and you can also update old testimonials as you gain better ones that support your business goals. This approach also acts two-fold. One, you’ll get a great testimonial after setting up the framework of the “before” picture and any clients that were meaning to contact you for another project will be reminded to get in touch with you.
By developing this strategy for your service-based business you’ll be able to gain some quality testimonials that prove you’re an expert in your field. Follow-up with your former clients for possible repeat business and remind them how your solutions help solve their problem.
For more tips on how to improve your business website strategy view my other articles in Web Development and Design.