Trust. It’s why people hire you. But it takes a lot of time and money to persuade a prospect to trust you enough to give you his business. The best way to generate trust is obvious but it isn’t used very much – Testimonials. That’s why I recommend using testimonials at every opportunity. They’re free, relatively easy to get, and flexible enough to add potency to almost any marketing campaign. Best of all they’re believed.
The primary reason that people don’t buy from you is not price, location, or service (though to continue in business for any length of time these elements must be present in spades). No, it’s usually trust. People are afraid of spending too much, of buying a lousy product, of not getting the service they need. Trust is the critical element in closing the sale. That’s where testimonials can be put into action. Prospective clients are far more likely to trust what others have to say about your service than what you have to say about yourself.
It’s easy to do. Testimonials can be compiled by sending out a simple “confidential” survey in which you ask your clients to rate your service, speed, cost, etc. Invite them to make comments on their letterhead, letting them know that their comments will be used in your marketing. THIS DISCLOSURE IS AN IMPERATIVE FOR OUR INDUSTRY AND ITS CODES OF CONFIDENTIALITY.
Once you have one testimonial or hundred put them to work for you.
Ø Print a booklet of your best testimonials (the thicker the better) and send them to your customers, to prospects, and to the media.
Ø Use testimonials in your print ads.
Ø Devote at least one panel in your brochure to testimonials from customers.
Ø Put testimonials on the walls of your conference or meeting area, or on a wall where your customers can see them.
For help with your marketing and practice-building endeavors contact Natalie J. Armstrong-Motin directly at firstname.lastname@example.org