Testimonials are written or spoken statements that praise or endorse a brand, product, or service. Brands often ask satisfied clients or customers for their testimonials to include in marketing materials. Today, we’re looking at reasons why using testimonials in your marketing strategy helps build trust with your audience and excitement for your products and services:
Testimonials aren’t easy to source. Finding a customer with the right personality and voice to show off your brand and one who’s willing to share their experience with you is a challenge. But, it’s worth it to go through the effort of sourcing these testimonials because of all the benefits they bring to your company. Here are a few reasons it’s important to use testimonials in your marketing campaigns:
The more genuine good things people have to say about your brand, the more your credibility improves. Think about how you shop for new products and services. Do reviews and real customers’ stamps of approval influence your decisions? If you said yes, you’re not alone. According to a Wyzowl study, 95% of people say both positive and negative reviews influence how they make purchasing decisions.
The more reviews you have, the more credible your company appears to its audience. And the more positive reviews you have, the more competent and helpful your brand seems.
The more credible your brand is, the easier it is to secure the audience’s trust. You can make sure your audience trusts your brand even more by sourcing and sharing testimonials the right way. The words of real customers over influencers and celebrities typically come off more genuine to your audience. There’s less speculation that your brand paid someone for their feedback if that person is essentially a nobody. That’s not to say you can never use influencer or celebrity testimonials, but all the ones you collect should be authentic.
And speaking of authenticity, creating testimonials that sound authentic is also a way to build trust. Don’t encourage your clients to heap on flowery praise and make your brand and products sound larger than life. Instead, guide questions about their experience with functionality, quality of life improvement, and convenience. The more your audience trusts your brand, the more likely they’ll be to become repeat customers and suggest your brand to others.
Testimonials help build your brand’s credibility and audience trust because they’re a form of social proof. Skeptics don’t have to take your marketing team’s or your CEO’s word for how great a product or service is. In the minds of your clients or customers, of course, your brand leadership toots its own horn. Your company wouldn’t exist if they didn’t think it was great.
But real people and even unsolicited influencers and celebrities don’t have to say anything good about your company. They’re free to give honest opinions about what working with your brand is really like versus the perception your company leadership wants to portray. When clients and customers feel like they’re getting a behind-the-scenes look at how your company operates—and it’s positive—they’re more likely to want to investigate further.
Using testimonials in your marketing is a straightforward way to show clients and customers how your brand relieves their pain points. When collecting information for testimonials, your team can guide the conversation with the respondent to dive deeper into how your products and services made their lives easier or more successful.
This type of guided collection method helps steer your respondent away from empty praise. For example, an impactful testimonial wouldn’t read, “I love CopyPress, and working with the team is great.” That’s a soundbite, but it’s not a helpful testimonial. It doesn’t tell skeptical potential customers what we do or why we’re a top-quality solution.
But asking testimonial interviews questions about how our services improved their businesses could lead to a testimonial like, “CopyPress gives us the ability to work with more dealership groups. We are able to provide unique and fresh content for an ever-growing customer base.” This quote comes from one of our real testimonials with Kevin Doory, Director of SEO at Auto Revo. Do you see how the second example explains the actionable ways CopyPress helps clients? Your testimonials can do the same.
The best marketers and marketing teams are the ones who can tell a good story. But being an excellent storyteller doesn’t always mean you have to be the person with the stories to tell. It also means accurately and interestingly conveying the stories of others, like in testimonials.
Using testimonials in your marketing content helps humanize your brand. Gone are the days of brands being cold, unfeeling corporate entities. Today, people want to know how your brand looks out for its clients and its team members. When you can share that information straight from the audience themselves, it takes on an even greater significance. Real people sharing their real stories and emotions about your brand have a bigger impact than a dry tagline that people can’t connect with.
According to a case study from VWO, using testimonials and social proof in your marketing can increase conversions and sales by as much as 34%. The study did a split test of a landing page with and without testimonials to see which one got more conversions. The one with reviews hyping the service got more.
Testimonials increase conversions for many of the same reasons we already discussed: increasing trust and credibility. When you position your testimonials in the right places, like on landing pages or within campaigns with a clear call-to-action, you have an even better chance of getting the results you want from the campaign.
Because testimonials are supposed to be an organic marketing tactic, they don’t take a bit out of your marketing budget. Most testimonials are free and grow from your audience wanting to and being willing to share their positive experience with others. Some brands may incentivize their audience to provide testimonials with giveaways, coupons, or discounts. But none of those tactics affect the marketing budget.
The biggest way testimonials hit your marketing resources is through the time it takes to find the right testimonial candidates and work with them to create the right pieces that share their stories and paint your brand in a positive light.
You can use testimonials at any stage of the marketing funnel, but the stages where they’re most effective may depend on your brand products and services and your audience.
At the top of the funnel, testimonials could help grab the attention of audience members that don’t know your products or services exist. If you partner with trusted influencers or even community influencers to share the good points about your brand, that association could help bring in new clients. It’s important to remember that these types of partnerships should be authentic. Work with people who actually like and use your product or service and aren’t just in the deal for the affiliate cash.
For most companies, testimonials work best in the middle of the marketing funnel. This is the time when your audience is trying to decide what solution is right for their problems. Testimonials and other types of word-of-mouth marketing like reviews or case studies help give your audience additional proof that your solutions are the best choice out of the available options.
These endorsements also work at the bottom of the marketing funnel. Even after your audience has already made up their minds to purchase. Testimonials can serve as additional validation that the client is making the right choice in working with your brand.
Testimonials are just one kind of content marketing you can use within your campaigns to build credibility and trust. To learn more about the other options to weave into your campaigns, download our Content Marketing Pyramid eBook. Inside, you’ll find out just how each content piece and channel interconnect with others to provide the most comprehensive brand experience that gets your audience to convert. To receive your copy, share your information with us below.
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