Customer Testimonials – How to Use them to Your Advantage

Why do people buy products or services? It could be for a number of reasons, for example, because a specific product or service fills an emotional need. We might also buy because we like the actual person or personality behind a product or company or because a sales person has done a really good job in persuading us!

The use of Customer testimonials can help tap into the main buying behaviors and they’re much more effective than sales copy because they’re coming from an outside, presumably unbiased, source.  Testimonials are worth their weight in gold!  Here’s how and where to use them to their fullest.

Website real estate.  Many people place their best and most powerful testimonials on their home pages where they have a high chance of being seen by visitors. They can be placed in a sidebar so they stand out from the rest of the content on the page or alternatively, they can be placed in the midst of the content in a call out box. The following types of testimonials will be pack the biggest punch and get you better results:

* Those provided from notable personalities or names in your industry.  For example, if you’re a commercial real estate agent then a testimonial from Donald Trump would certainly warrant prime website real estate.  Anyone who is highly thought of in your industry would definitely capture the attention of prospects and customers.
* Glowing endorsements.  Let’s face it, while all testimonials are good some testimonials are better than others. Place the extra powerful, glowing endorsements right where your prospects can see them, on your home page.

Sales Copy.  Any good sales letter will include testimonials from happy and enthusiastic customers.  It’s often the extra umph that people need to make a purchase.  In fact, quite often people skip reading the body of a sales letter and read the offer, the postscript and the testimonials.

Autoresponders and enewsletters.  Email is a positive way to stay connected with your clients and prospects.  It makes good business sense to include testimonials in these communications. It’s not bragging, it’s sharing your good fortune with others and encouraging them to become part of your community.  Of course, it’s still important to stick to the 80/20 rule, 80% information, 20% promotion.

A separate website testimonial page.  When you collect enough testimonials, you may want to create a separate page on your website to share them.  You can call it your “Testimonials” page or “Success Stories,” whatever feels relevant for your website and your industry.

There is no doubt that testimonials are a strong motivator, allowing potential clients to see the power and benefit of doing business with you.  The fact that they are provided by an unbiased outside source means that they carry more weight than sales copy. Try and encourage your customers to give you testimonials. Think of ways to reward or incentivize them for their success stories, and share them with the world.

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