Testimonials are a key way to building your business ‘invisibly’. When other people speak on your behalf, people listen more. So how do you get more of them?!
You’ve no doubt heard and read (over and over!) that testimonials are a great thing to have and to use in your business. When we first start to work with our speakers, authors and coaches, to build the foundations in their business so it works On Their Terms, one of the first things we ask is –“Have you got testimonials?! (and if they say yes, we ask: “And are you using them?!”).
Inevitably, it turns out that this simple way to grow your business is a sorely under-utilised bit of magic. We don’t want that for anyone, including you. Read on to figure out how you can get your clients to give you endorsements and testimonials. Because it actually REALLY matters.
Getting great testimonials builds your business like nothing else!
First off,you MUST use testimonials to grow your business. Especially as a speaker, author, coach — because it builds a picture of who you are, how you work, what you do, what results you can help other create. You get the idea. When someone else says you’re brilliant, that’s VERY different from you showing up spouting your abilities and qualities — mostly that makes you sound arrogant, ignorant, boorish or other judgmental things that DISCONNECT people from you — the very opposite of what you want to achieve.
Testimonials help people CONNECT to you and makes it easier to CHOOSE you.
It’s also all about social proof. The more others can speak on your behalf, the easier it is for people to choose you. Especially if you can get testimonials from your absolute ideal client avatar, the person that is the perfect example of all those you do and want to work with. Because when they say what they’ve achieved, with your guidance, it’s a truth. When they share the (usually aspirational) results they’ve got, that’s attractive and illustrative to exactly the same avatars who’ve yet to work with you. The key is that they can RELATE to the successes someone is talking about, because they too want those results.
So, what makes a great testimonial?
Because testimonials are not created equal, some have much more impact than others. Someone saying at the end of a session or talk that it was ‘great’ simply tells of their experience, but it shows nothing. It might make you feel good in the moment, but it’s not easy for you to use that to speak on your behalf. Here’s a list of the things that make a testimonial worthy to represent you and what you do.
To be good, the testimonial must do or have at least one of these:
- Endorse your skill, your ability, your framework, your way of doing things, your approach (one of these, some of these or all of these)
- Paint a picture — either of how the process works and what it’s like to work with you. Or give a before and after, if possible in images. These are great because a picture tells a 1000 words and two contrasting pictures 10X that impact! As an example, if you are a health coach, you can demonstrate results beautifully with photos of your clients; or clutter clearing coaches can use this to great effect too.
- Share results! What’s happened because they’ve worked with, listened to, or heard you. Numbers work well to demonstrate this. Improvements and increases in the areas that your avatar want to achieve (or reductions pending what you do!).
- Someone very credible who makes the testimonial — this means you “borrow credibility” by the very nature that they (someone respected in your industry or a well known influencer for example) –endorse you, people will think more of you and raise their desire to work with you. For example, think of who you might like to do the book cover ‘quote’ that attracts attention.
- A relatable, credible, real person that is fully sharing their experience — the testimonial must be emotionally engaged and supportive of you — this is especially true for video endorsements, if you can catch them in the energy of their ‘aha’ moments or excitement at results, that translates really well to how it’s experienced.
- Your ideal client avatar saying what is possible, and sharing why working with you is a great thing to do (this includes them sharing your process).
Cultivating raving articulate fans…
As a speaker, author or coach (or any entrepreneur and business owner!), it’s vital that you put this activity — the getting of testimonials — into your processes and marketing. Every (good — see above!) endorsement is an ambassador for you, that will continue to do work for you, long after you first receive it and put ‘out there’.
Let us know below what you’ll be doing as a result of using these. Next week, we’ll let you know HOW & WHERE to use them, so go out and ask for at least one or two this week, and/or go look at the ones you have and see if they really do ‘speak well’ for you.
We support speakers, authors & coaches to monetise their message, market their purpose and create & manage their portfolio business, ON THEIR TERMS™.