Just about every service business relies on some form of 'proof' that they can deliver what they offer.
And client testimonials are among the most sought after marketing weapons for business owners to have in their arsenal.
But how do you go about getting a client testimonial that is worded well enough that you can actually use it? Do you find it difficult to be bold and just ASK for it?
Are you too scared to ask directly for a testimonial?Many business owners and service professionals are in exactly the same position.
When you ask for a testimonial you don't want to appear pushy, do you? But you do want to get a relevant testimonial that explains how you helped your client achieve their goals.
So, what's the secret?...In coaching clients on their marketing tactics I have found that they can be successful in getting good testimonials by using a simple 3-question approach. I recommend you try it as well.
What to ask...When asking for testimonials it is helpful to provide guidance for your client. By asking them to answer questions they can quickly focus on what to say.
The following 3 questions should provide answers that can be combined for a strong testimonial. (NOTE - insert your own words if needed to replace the text in brackets)
- Which factors encouraged you to choose me (my business) to assist you with (the outcome your client wanted)?
- Please think about the service I provided. Explain how you believe the process I used (or, what you did for them) will help you (or, their business), or how it contributed to you achieving your objectives.
- If you were to recommend me to a colleague, friend, or business associate, how would you describe the way I provided my service to you (or, the way I helped you achieve xyz).
When you have those answers they can often be placed together to form a complete testimonial, saying (why they chose you), followed by (how you helped them), followed by (why they would recommend you).
When to ask...Ideally, you should approach your client to ask these questions shortly after the satisfactory conclusion of your business with them.
If you have an ongoing engagement with that client, ask after a major milestone has been achieved. That way your client has something specific to focus on when answering your questions.
How to ask...These questions can easily be asked via email. There is no need to ask them face-to-face. In fact, by asking via email (or printed letter) you can more easily capture their specific words. And it gives your client a chance to think about what they want to say.
So take time to prepare your questions so they are worded clearly. Then stand back and send your testimonial requests.