The Power of Positive Customer Testimonials

I’m not sure where I heard it, but several years ago a business consultant told me that money spent on great tools and on marketing are the best investments you can make as a business owner.  So, I’m constantly looking for great tools to either automate my business processes or find new marketing avenues.

With that being said, I was looking for a certain tool this week and did some online research only to find what seemed to perfectly fill the need.  I read the sales pitch and as I got to the bottom I saw four or five great reviews of the product explaining how it overdelivered on all the promises made.  My credit card was almost immediately out of my wallet and information entered into the order form.

Several days later I received the software package only to find that it filled only the basic requirements and in fact did not work as well as some of the other tools I already had.  At first, I felt a bit foolish for falling for the sales hype but realized there were a few lessons to be learned.

1.        When you have a customer in buyer mode, a testimonial or two immediately removes the remaining buyer objections.  One of our basic needs as humans is social acceptance and not being the only one to do something.  A testimonial removes that fear of being the only one to do something and helps the buyer to feel part of the group.  The closer your testimonial givers are to that persons ‘in crowd’ or the socioeconomic group they wish to be part of  the better it is.  Take the phenomena of Facebook as a prime example.  If you can find a hook that works in that genre you can basically print money.

2.       If you want a customer for life you need to provide actual value.  Because of the broken promise in the purchase of this product I’ll never buy from this vendor again.  I know for certain that this vendor is only interested in sales hype and the testimonials had to be faked or bought.  When you compromise your integrity you have a business model that is unsustainable.  In today’s connected world you can go from success to failure in just a matter of months by not delivering what you promised.  I’ve literally seen it happen and will share the story at a later date.

The question is – do you have a process in place to systematically ask for testimonials from your customers?  First of all, make sure your product or service overdelivers and provides so much value that it is worthy of raving fans.  Second, develop a way to kindly ask for testimonials from your customers – the best time to do this is just after the sale.  A side benefit is that it solidifies the great buying decision they just made and removes any tinge of buyers remorse that may be lingering in their mind.

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  1. #1 by admin on July 24, 2010 - 10:39 am

    How do you collect testimonials for your business? We’d love to hear your comments…

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