How to get testimonials that have new clients clamoring!

Do your testimonials set you apart? collect powerful reviews.

Testimonials let you show off your awesomeness in a way that hopefully persuades potential clients to book you in too.

How? Because testimonials demonstrate that you’ve solved real problems for real customers. And that’s what makes you more credible to prospective clients

But only if you make them powerful testimonials.

A simple “Belinda did a great job with our copywriting and we liked her” isn’t going to persuade anyone to do anything.

So how do you get those amazingly powerful quotes from clients? Even when clients are choked up with happiness at the work you’ve done, many clients just don’t know how to write a great testimonial.

That’s where you come in. If you want powerful testimonials, you have to guide clients on what to write.

Here are some tips to get testimonials that make your prospects go “WOW, I gotta get me some of that.”

1. Listen to your clients.

If they say something nice, ask them if you can use that in your marketing. I bet they say yes.

2. Ask your customers for a testimonial when they are feeling great about what you’ve delivered.

You’re more likely to say awesome things when you feel awesome… right?

Give your clients a heads up that you will be asking them for a testimonial (or review) of the project at the end so it’s not a shock. Then straight after your copywriting is approved and you’re finalising the project, get your testimonial process under way.

I always like to get a testimonial before I issued that final invoice.

3. Give your customers some tips on what to include in the testimonial.

We all love to hear how awesome we are to work with but the most useful testimonials delve a bit deeper. Don’t be afraid of giving your customers an outline of what to write like:

  • How did you help them overcome their specific problem?
  • How much profit did they generate as a result?
  • How did the final product meet their needs?
  • Were they surprised by your service delivery?
  • How did they find the experience of working with you?
  • Would they recommend you to their friends or colleagues?

[These are Sean D’Souza’s recommended questions and he explains them more on the Copyblogger post 6 Questions To Ask for Powerful Testimonials – a great read]

I use these questions for my Copywriting Master Class and the testimonials I get are amazing. Why? Well, my course is awesome for starters but it’s more than that. The testimonials talk about obstacles, results and surprises.

The obstacles are important because in Sean’s words,

There’s always an obstacle, and it’s often something you may not have thought of. So when the customer brings up this obstacle, it presents an angle that’s unique, personal, and dramatic.

Understanding the bigger picture (not just the good bits) is what makes a testimonial believable.

Sean generously shares a more detailed testimonial questionnaire that is well worth a look.

4. Edit your testimonials.

That doesn’t mean rewriting them completely but you may need to make them more succinct and fix some typos. And that’s okay.

You do not want to over-edit your client responses but you don’t want readers to be distracted by pointless details or typos.

Write them up into a longer, story style testimonial and then pick out the best parts to create a shorter, more succinct testimonial.

5. Include as much detail as possible about the author of the quote.

“Belinda Weaver, Owner of Copywrite Matters, August 2017” is so lot more believable than “Business Owner, 2017”.

Be sensitive to how much information your client may want to share but try to get:

  • their full name
  • their business name (if relevant)
  • their location
  • the date
  • permission to use their headshot or logo

A testimonial is a story and it’s stories that help us connect

By guiding your clients a little more you can get the makings of really powerful story. A story in which you are the hero.

Do you ask for testimonials from your clients? What do you ask? I’d love to know!


7 Responses

  1. Getting a usable client testimonial can be like pulling teeth sometimes, so making it as easy as possible for people to say good stuff about you makes perfect sense. I find I’m asking the right questions, but sometimes at the wrong time, so thanks for the tip about requesting a testimonial before the final invoice is issued – genius!

    1. My pleasure Shauna. Timing is everything sometimes!

      Another tip I picked up from Sean D’Souza is letting your client know you’re going to be asking them for a review before you get started and as the project turns into the final bends… so it’s not a surprise to them. You can even ask some early questions to form part on of the testimonial – as many clients forget how awesome and easy you made the start of the project!

  2. Giving your clients tips on what to include in a testimonial is such a key point. You totally nailed it with those questions to prompt them.
    I’ve gotten testimonials before that were just
    ‘He was great’ totally unusable but also totally my fault for not asking the right questions the right way.
    I stumbled across this thing which I’ve used to collect a few testimonials and display them. It might help some people.
    Love the blog. I know I’ve come a bit late to the party.

  3. Hi, thanks for all the free content! I’m not a copywriter, but an editor, so please forgive me for being a human spellcheck here.

    While this is an older column, you may still want to fix “clammering” to “clamoring.”

    Thanks again.

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