How many different ways do you have to spread the word about your products or services? Online, there are social media channels, paid advertisements, your business’ website, blog, other blogs where you can guest-post, and affiliates. There are a plethora of channels you can use to communicate with your customers. The effectiveness of most of these channels, however, hangs on a single thing – your ability to serve quality content.
Different types of content serve different purposes. Viral content, quizzes, and competitions raise awareness about your products. Infographics, guides, and trend reports do the same, although they educate more than they entertain. When you want to move away from building awareness towards increasing purchases, you’ll need different types of content, such as product reviews, case studies, and – customer testimonials.
How Do Customer Testimonials Affect Decision Making?
Customer testimonials are one of the most valuable tools you have for word-of-mouth marketing. They go hand in hand with customer reviews as the type of content people like to seek out before they decide to use a product or a service. They serve as social proof that your product or service brings value to its users, and as such are more than capable of increasing the credibility of your business.
Think of it this way – you can speak as much as you want about how great your products are. But people will not listen to you as much as they’d listen to someone who doesn’t have skin in the game, and rightfully so. With customer testimonials, you’re using other people’s voices to do the work of proving your business’ value. This will not work only on new or prospective customers. It will also work on existing customers by reminding them why they chose your products or services in the first place.
How to Use Customer Testimonials
Testimonials are a type of content that works best if you embed it on your website. Think about how people discover your website. They find your social media profile, or they click on a link they found in an article you guest-posted, or they simply find you using search engines. They see that you have what they need, but they need some kind of proof of your value.
You want to give them that proof of value straight away. Otherwise, they will have to go to third-party websites to find it. Some of them will do it happily. Others will see it as an unwelcome step they have to take, and it can cause them to drop out of the process. It’s those people you should have in mind when incorporating testimonials into your website design. You want to give them the proof they need as soon as they land on your website.
How to Get Customer Testimonials
We’ve seen why customer testimonials are a great type of content. There’s just one problem with them – they’re not a type of content you can create on your own. You will depend on your customers to give you testimonials, and you’ll need to find a way to get them to write one.
Some customers are simply not aware that they can post customer testimonials, and they would react favorably to being asked to write one. Mentioning that your business appreciates customer testimonials and explaining how to give them can really pay off.
You can also bank on any online mentions of your business. If you find that someone wrote something good about your business on social media, you can use that quote as a customer testimonial. If you want to be really nice, you can ask whether that would be okay first. Some businesses choose to skip this step though.
If your business is listed on one of the review websites such as Yelp, you can also pick the best reviews and include them in your website. You can also cut the middleman and enable customers to leave reviews straight to your website and then use the best reviews as customer testimonials. What’s important is that you get them, without paying for them, and that you display them prominently for everyone to see.