Customer testimonials won't automatically convert prospects to satisfied customers.
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Although it's nice to get their feedback, customers frequently write testimonials that are weak or incapable of accurately communicating their experience with your products or services.
As an ethical business owner, you don't want to tell customers what to include in their testimonials. However, there be ways for you to strengthen your customer testimonials without interfering with their content. Here is what effective customer testimonials look like:
- Believable. More than anything else, customer testimonials have to be believable – and sometimes even genuine customer testimonies can stretch the imagination. If a testimonial pushes the limits of believability, don't use it.
- Specific. Specific results are much better than a generic endorsement of your products. Keeping in mind that the results have to be within reason, the comments of a customer who is able to quantify the effects of your products or services ring truer than the comments of someone who is just generally happy with their purchase.
- Strategic. Customer testimonials are not a one-size-fits-all marketing tool. They need to be strategically introduced into your advertising and marketing resources to reinforce specific claims and features. If you can't find the right place to use a customer's comments today, hold on to them. Testimonials have a long shelf life and there will be a more appropriate place for it later.
- Edited. It's okay to edit customer testimonials for length. In fact, you will have to condense customer letters down to a few sentences to make them useful for brochures and other marketing materials. You should also feel free to correct typos. But if a testimonial requires more editing or revisions, you should run the edited version by the customer for approval.
- Diverse. Try to solicit testimonials from a broad range of customers. If all of your testimonials come from the same segment of your customer base, their effect will be limited. By constantly introducing new customers and new voices into the mix, you will give prospective customers a more accurate picture of your products' benefits, particularly if its benefits vary from one demographic to the next.