Testimonials: One of the most underused selling tools

What is a testimonial?

It is one of your clients saying how much they have profited from being
with you. It’s the pictures, words or sounds that prove your value.

Why do you need them?

Testimonials are a great weapon. They are provided free from your army
of satisfied, willing, independent clients. It’s like having unpaid
sales people working for you – they show how good you are. And the more
you get, the more powerful the effect is on both prospects and those
that give the testimonials, who become even more loyal to your product.

Types of testimonials

There are two types of testimonials you want.

  • One says that you are a great person to do business with. This
    is the “good guy” testimonial. You need these because people like to do
    business with good guys.
  • The second good type is the “Proof of the Pudding”
    testimonial. “We saved £4037 a month thanks to XYZ Lawyers” or “We got
    £1 million in compensation because we used XYZ”

Use both types of testimonial if possible, but “Proof of the Pudding”
testimonials are essential. Being able to measure the actual pound
value of someone’s worth means that prospects can immediately see the
value in using your product – and it’s told to them by someone that has
no interest in selling the product.

You can use testimonials in many ways

Whatever objection you are getting – you can answer it with a testimonial.

If they are “satisfied with the present Lawyer” and you’ve got a client
who used to say the same but now uses you, then ask him to write a
testimonial and send it to your prospect.

Can’t get a meeting with a prospect? Send an audio message on CD. This
could be from one of your existing clients who can back up your
expertise. ”I was too busy to give this guy an appointment for 12 whole
months. It was a massive mistake. In 6 days he has made a huge
difference.” This puts doubt into the mind of the prospect who won’t
take the calls. He’s thinking, “Maybe I should speak with this Lawyer
after all”.

Make it easy for people to give you testimonials

Make sure you are great for a start! Ensure that people like and trust you.

Write a letter asking for a testimonial when your client thinks the
best about you – maybe just after you’ve done a great job for him. In
the letter highlight the things you want comments on. Make sure you
give a small gift of appreciation that’s appropriate for their time
(e.g. Amazon voucher), and enclose a stamped addressed envelope.

Ways of presenting testimonials

Most people get letter testimonials, but what about photos of happy customers on the wall in your showroom?

You can get a video testimonial and put it on You Tube for everyone to
see – just link it to your website and include the link in emails.

Audio is another type, you can easily send audio files by email or on CD.

The different types of things which act in the same way as testimonials

Year established, number of clients, video demonstrations, 0800
information lines – all prove your value and expertise. They are all
testimonials to the truth.

Over the next month can you get one video testimonial for your business
and 10 written/audio testimonials? Can you get 5 “Proof of the Pudding”

Include these testimonials on your website, emails, letters, phone on
hold message and advertising. One way that you can use testimonials is
to pre-sell to your prospective clients. Get all your written
testimonials together. Make sure you have at least 20. Don’t cut and
paste the words. Photocopy the originals.

When you get an inquiry include all 20, 30 or 50 testimonials in your
reply. The client might not read every one – BUT the overwhelming proof
will pre-sell your next client on you.

By Boyd Butler

Boyd Butler’s 19-year career has involved working with Sir John
Madejski at Reading Football Club, Dame Anita Roddick at the Body Shop
and Sir David Arculus at media giants Emap. He advises businesses on
lead generation and conversion.