Business coaches and B2B marketing pros have one definite thing in common. They benefit greatly when they can reel in strong testimonials from respected industry experts. In fact, great testimonials can be pure gold for any marketing campaign.
When I create Core Message Platforms for my clients, I always encourage them to include a section in which we collect and organize testimonials on an ongoing basis from well-known industry pros and product champions.
Often, this suggestion leads to the most common question I hear from clients about testimonials, which is… “How do I get them?”
This is a good question because, after all, it’s not always easy to ask someone to say something great about you, your product, or your service.
Fortunately, getting great testimonials is much easier when you follow my simple five-step plan.
In this post I’ll reveal steps one through three. In my next post I will spell out the final two steps, and include an example that will really bring my main points to life.
So, let’s get started with my first three steps for reeling in great testimonials.
STEP 1 – Turn on Your Radar
Always have your testimonial radar toggled to the “on” position. Here’s what I mean. When you receive an e-mail that compliments your product or service, ask the sender if you can turn his or her gracious words into a testimonial.
When people are moved by your work enough to send you an unsolicited compliment, there is a very strong chance they’ll agree to have you turn it into a testimonial.
The takeaway here is to always have your eyes and ears open for testimonial opportunities. I’m guessing you currently receive a lot of compliments for your work that you appreciate…and then forget about.
However, don’t let these opportunities slide by. Express your appreciation when you receive compliments, but then take further action to turn them into testimonials!
STEP 2 – Polish Raw Quotes
After clients agree to provide you with a testimonial, they will often e-mail it to you in the form of a raw quote that is a little rough around the edges. When this happens, it’s a perfectly acceptable common practice to ask them if you can give it some polish (I’ll show you exactly how to do this in my next post), tighten it up so it is crisp and concise, and then run it past them for their approval.
This takes the pressure off of your clients to word their testimonials “just right.” Plus, this provides you with a great chance to shape your own endorsements.
I’ve been in business for 16 years. Every time I’ve asked satisfied clients if I could polish up the testimonial they’ve sent me – their answer has always been, “yes.”
STEP 3 – Don’t be Shy. Ask!
Sometimes the best approach is the direct approach. Translation…ask for testimonials!
After completing projects with clients, you may have a strong feeling they’d be willing to give you a nice endorsement. Don’t let these moments pass you by. Just go ahead and ask them for a testimonial.
When you have good relationships with clients, there’s no reason to be shy because it’s highly likely they understand the value of testimonials. It’s also likely that collecting them is an important part of their marketing efforts. So they get it.
Here is a key point to remember. When testimonials from respected industry authorities appear in your marketing materials, it serves as free publicity for them—especially when you include their photos.
So it’s a win for you, but it’s also a nice win for those providing you with testimonials.
In my next post, I’ll reveal steps four and five of my testimonial-collecting game plan. These last two steps are the two most important ones in the process—so I encourage you to stay tuned!
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