Testimonials are, without a doubt, the best form of promotion. They are the digital era version of word of mouth and are incredibly effective in building customer trust. One single positive review from a happy customer is worth hundreds of pieces of content where you talk about your own products.
This being the case, a significant part of your marketing strategy should be devoted to collecting and using testimonials. This is not as difficult as you may imagine. People are happy to share their positive experience with a product and recommend them to friends or to the general public. Your job is to encourage your customers to give testimonials.
Today we will focus on the social media, because this is very fertile ground for collecting testimonials. People use social media to communicate, after all. They share their feelings, what they are doing and, yes, how they feel about a product or service.
Here are a few best practices for getting testimonials on the social media:
- Encourage People to Check in at Your Place of Business
Even if your business is a simple TV repair shop, you should still post messages in visible places inviting people to check in (maybe with a little incentive, like the password to your WiFi network). How does this help you?
Once a person checks into a business with their Facebook™ account, they will receive a notification the next day to post a review and give a rating to your business. If they were happy with the service, people will gladly leave a positive review and give you a 5-star rating and these will appear on your company Facebook™ page.
- Organise a Video Contest
You can organise a contest on YouTube or Facebook™ asking customers to demonstrate how easy it is to use your products, or to share an original manner in which they use them. All of this user-generated content is very valuable and doubles as testimonials in favour of your business.
It does not necessarily have to be a contest (i.e. conditioned by winning a prize) because people are generally very open to sharing these small videos with your business, even for the little notoriety they gain by having them posted on your account.
- Promote Your Top Reviews and Mention the Authors
Being mentioned on a social media platform by a brand is a big deal for many people. They feel validated and important. They feel that their voice matters. If you publicly mention by name the authors of your featured reviews and thank them, other people will feel encouraged to leave creative reviews. This simple task of mentioning and thanking review authors will snowball in time, giving you hundreds, if not thousands, of good reviews to choose from and promote.
- Unleash the Power of the Hashtag
Twitter and Instagram are king and queen of the hashtag. This is where you can truly generate lots of inspirational testimonials by asking people to reply with a certain hashtag.
For instance, sportswear manufacturer Nike launched the hashtag #betterforit aimed at women. It generated hundreds of thousands of replies from women across the world showing how fitness and sports (wearing Nike apparel, of course) made their lives better.
- Just Ask for Them
As simplistic as it sounds, many businesses do not get testimonials on the social media because they do not ask for them. It does not have to be a long, heartfelt plea, but a simple “Share your opinion about our brand and products”. After all, sharing is caring, right?
And if you care for your customers, they will, in turn, care for your business and take the time to leave a testimonial. It’s as simple as that.