Tell me – would you walk into a brand new mechanic’s shop and hire them to do a bunch of critical work on your car?
You might if (and only if) they had several glowing recommendations from other satisfied customers. But chances are, if you couldn’t find any information from other people about how they do business and whether they did quality work… you’d steer clear and find some other place to go.
Why are reviews so important?
Think about the times you’ve decided you need to go on vacation or out for a fancy dinner… you probably ask your friends and family and Facebook acquaintances for all their recommendations on awesome places to go, fantastic places to eat, and fun things to do.
If no one you know has gone to the spot you have in mind, you probably start trolling Yelp and other review sites, looking for other people who have taken the time to express what their experience was and what they thought of the service.
Why do we look for reviews so obsessively?
Well, no one wants to have a bad experience, right? We all want to have some confidence that our money and time is going to be well spent!
And if a business gets bad reviews on Yelp or their reputation on social media goes sour, it’s a sure bet that their revenue is going to suffer. Unless they do some serious work on their quality of service, their ability to get people to click the “book now” or “learn more” button on Facebook is going to tank.
Unfortunately, providing testimonials for our businesses is often one of the last things creative entrepreneurs think of doing!
In the first place, it can be hard (or even embarrassing) to feel like you’re asking for praise or validation for your work.
And second, sometimes it’s hard to find the right moment to ask… especially when you think a client is going to be with you for a while and then they ghost. Or, when it’s a long term client and the work just sort of goes on and on, it never seems like the right moment to ask!
But you’re doing yourself and your potential clients a huge disservice by not providing them with evidence that you can rock their expectations and provide amazing service.
So if you don’t have testimonials to provide the social proof of your awesomeness, you need to get on that, pronto.
Here are three tips to make collecting testimonials easy-peasy:
Start asking your clients to fill out an assessment form at the end of your project. By collecting information about what went right, what didn’t, and what they liked best about working with you, you can improve your business and collect a testimonial in the process. (Even if they don’t specifically write a testimonial, there’s usually a few glowing sentences in there that you can ask for their permission to use!)
Add a “feedback” clause to your contract stating that at the end of the project, your client will fill out that feedback form… and then point it out to them when they sign. That way they’re obligated to take your ask seriously.
- Reach out to your previous clients via email or direct message, and ask them if they’d be willing to give you a testimonial. You could even get fancy and create a Typeform or Google Forms survey to neatly compile all the feedback you get!
Now that you’ve got testimonials, what on earth do you do with them?!
Make sure you put them on your website (you can sprinkle them around and have a special “client testimonials” page), on your social media pages, your LinkedIn bio, on your portfolio… basically, put them anywhere you can think of where a potential client might run across your information!
Do you have trouble asking your clients for testimonials? Let me know why in the comments!
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