Finally, your portfolio is flourishing with successful and powerful work completed for your clients. Yet, no one seems to be noticing. What’s missing? How about the actual client’s opinion? In fact, 89% of B2B marketers consider client testimonials to be the most effective content marketing tactic available to them.
While a rich portfolio should be able to speak for itself, there’s something more compelling about a customer testimonial that cannot be conveyed through the work itself. It’s about personal relationships and trust. When prospects read how others value your company, products or services, they are more likely to want to do business with you and your company. There’s no question about it. The written and spoken words of others strengthen your prospects’ beliefs that they can expect the same deliverables from you. This ensures a positive ROI, in whatever way that is defined for your organization.
Best Practices for Client Testimonials
Yet, like every other marketing initiative, creating and using testimonials need to be done well to garner attention. Here’s how to make your client testimonials stand out.
- Make them visible. Often prospects will quickly scan a website to explore the possibility of working with a company. Making information accessible and easy to find is imperative. If a prospect is searching for client testimonials specifically, the path to them should be obvious. In addition, they should reside in more than one place. Scattering testimonials throughout your website attached to related content helps visitors make the connection between your products and services and real-world results. And don’t forget about the homepage. There are countless websites that include customer testimonials right on their homepage. This conveys an important message. Your clients’ opinions and successes are just as vital to your prospects as the features of the services or products you provide.
- Make the words come alive. Testimonials are easy to fake, and your prospects know it. By including more than just a quote, you’re providing prospects with a context for their opinions. For that reason, don’t just include the name, position and company of the person providing the testimonial. In fact, photos, other than stock images, can actually increase conversion rates by 161%, and including a video testimonial can go even further. In fact, 51.9% of marketing professionals believe video delivers the best ROI. Furthermore, client testimonials should lead somewhere. Include calls to action and clickable links that encourage traffic in and around your website.
- Don’t wait for testimonials to come to you. After you’ve purchased a product online, many times you receive a follow-up email requesting a rating about the product and buying experience. It’s important to note that 90% of online shoppers use customer’s ratings and reviews to influence their buying decision. B2B products and services aren’t so different. Although the process of a B2B sale has some variation from B2C, requesting a “review” from your client should still follow. It provides your firm with useful information on how to improve your sales process or other interactions with your company. Also, it will deliver great content for potential client testimonials. Don’t be afraid to request feedback from all of your clients. Then, turn responses into meaningful content to increase trust and credibility for your marketplace. By providing varied prompts and channels for your clients to respond, you’ll reach more audiences and receive a wider variety of valuable, opinionated content.
- Demonstrate breadth of experience and organize testimonials for relevancy. For companies that work with a wide variety of industries, showcasing your company’s expertise in those fields can be difficult. Including client testimonials from industry professionals in all areas is a great way to populate your website with proof of proficiency. It will instill trust from individuals of those specific trades. And, it illustrates your company’s adaptability to work within many market segments. It’s equally important to organize that information into a structure that prospects can easily filter. Allow them to find an opinion from an expert in their own field, to prove you’re an expert in yours.
Make Client Testimonials Human
What people say about your products and services can have an enormous effect on your company’s success. In the highly logical world of B2B marketing, decision-makers look for reassurance that someone with a similar problem or challenge has had success with your organization. Hearing from clients who have had positive experiences with your company adds the personal touch that reassures prospects and develops trust and confidence. You spend a lot of time, energy and resources building relationships with your clients and that’s worth showing off. Use client testimonials effectively to produce an authentic human element to your marketing. It will enhance credibility, build customer loyalty and create a competitive advantage.