Optimize your testimonials for better social proof and sales

Social proof is an undeniably powerful tool in any business owner's or marketer's toolkit. And of all forms of social proof, nothing converts more effectively than customer testimonials.

Whether you're selling services or product, and regardless of whether your audience is b2b or b2c, testimonials work. They work because people tend to take the word of other people.

Think about it. When someone you know gives a ringing endorsement of something, it tends to carry more weight than a review by an "expert". That's not to say expert reviews don't have a place in a marketing strategy, but when you back up their veracity with social proof, you've got an unbeatable one-two knockout punch for your content marketing.

Testimonials are the most underrated and valuable piece of content marketing available.

Statistics vary between marketing research leaders, but in general, it was found that 92% of all consumers read review or testimonials for social proof before making a purchasing decision. And between 85-90% read between six and ten reviews to inform their decision.

This means if you are regularly building and updating your bank of testimonials (if you’re a service-based business) or reviews (if you sell products) you’re not capitalizing on your hard-earned social proof.

The best performing reviews and testimonials take the form of video, and studies show the reason for this is people tent to trust ordinary people speaking to a camera about their experience with a product or service. Videos testimonials are a sort of next-level “word-of-mouth” type of promotion.

I’m going to drop a video testimonial here as a point of reference, both because I want to toot my own horn, but also because this video is a prime example of a GREAT testimonial.

 

Maybe you’re not into video. I wasn’t either. Until I learned how powerful video testimonials can be (data never lies).

Consider that over 60% of executives would rather watch a video than read text on the same topic. If you’re a service-based business and not using video, you could be missing out on reaching some of your target audience.

If you manufacture or sell consumer products, the numbers are even more compelling, with four times as many consumers preferring video to reading. Regularly including videos in your email marketing can more than double your read rates.

Video as Two-Fer Testimonial

Here’s another argument for asking for (or developing a campaign to actively produce) video testimonials:

You get TWO testimonials in one. You get the video content that you can embed and share. And you can transcribe and edit that video text into a shorter, more concise snippet to use on your website, in emails, on sales pages, etc.

There is an art to getting a well-crafted testimonial. Certainly you wouldn’t want a former client just gushing for 4 minutes about how awesome, amazing, and talented” you are. These messages might be a nice boost for your ego, but they won't have the same impact on your bottom line.

Great testimonials are specific and highlight the benefit and value to working with or buying from you.

With a little practice, you can turn your testimonial’s superpowers to 11. (And if you get that erstwhile pop culture reference, we should definitely chat!

Power-up your testimonials!

Get in touch for a free analysis to see whether your testimonials are doing all they can to win consumer confidence.

No pressure. No foolin'. Just a friendly chat and my honest feedback.