Why Testimonials Are Important
Testimonials are one of the most important (and often overlooked) elements of a business’ marketing strategy. I consider testimonials “earned marketing.” They aren’t something you pay for, although you can create incentives to encourage your clients to leave them. When you are searching online, it is human nature to look for what others have to say. This article describes research that shows “9 out of 10 people trust what a customer says about a business more than what that business says about itself.” We couldn’t agree more. In our experience, a business’ online reputation can sometimes even provide more impact than any marketing campaign.
There are many places online where you’ll find reviews. From online neighborhood boards like NextDoor to your Google My Business listing to your Facebook page, your customers have a nearly infinite amount of options to choose from when leaving feedback.
Getting positive testimonials is important, but responding to them is crucial as well. If a customer leaves a positive review, you want to be sure to thank that person for taking the time to write it. If a review is poor, it is even more important that you respond. You want to make sure that the individual knows they have been heard. It is easy to jump on the defense, especially if you know the person is incorrect, but be sure to do so in a way that still gives the client or customer credit. Unfortunately, the saying “the customer is always right” still rings true today, even if we know firsthand how damning it can be.
The testimonial cycle is almost like a rolling snowball. You want to make sure your customer service is top-notch so that clients will be encouraged to write about how incredible your business is; then, you want to be sure you respond, and when others see it, they will hopefully become your next customer. This creates a snowball effect of good reviews, all influenced by great customer service. Testimonials and reviews truly are one of the best forms of free marketing!
Read more about online reviews and reputation management here.