by Tricia Molloy,
Before I wrote my book in 2006 and starting my Working with Wisdom speaking, training and mentoring business, I was a marketing professional. In fact, my public relations firm, Molloy Communications, turns 25 this year.
Although I don’t do much marketing these days, one service I continue to offer is writing testimonial quotes. Many professionals have found that you can wait a long time for even the most delighted clients to send their testimonial quotes. And, when they do, they are often generic or not focused on your key messages. That’s why I chose to facilitate the process by interviewing my clients’ clients and writing the testimonials for everyone’s approval. I’ve written more than 500 over the years.
The reason I’m so passionate about testimonials goes beyond its power as a third-party endorsement. It’s about the power of gratitude. When I interview my clients’ clients and help them articulate their appreciation, the process produces multiple outcomes. Their client is reminded of the good work that was done on their behalf, which prompts them to do more business and refer others. My client gets to read that what they’ve done really matters and can share that testimonial with the support staff that often doesn’t get any client feedback. Then, these testimonials are featured on my clients’ websites and are also added to their LinkedIn profiles—a much better alternative to the one-click LinkedIn endorsement that lacks any thought or credibility.
Compelling client testimonials are like word-of-mouth advertising on steroids. Whether you’re an attorney, management consultant, marketing professional, speaker or business vendor, you can benefit from client testimonials.
If you’re a good writer and would like to do it yourself, here are some best practices I’ve learned along the way.
- Before You Begin: To increase the effectiveness of your collection of testimonials as a marketing and sales tool, pinpoint three key messages–such as the high level of client service you provide—and make sure each testimonial touches on at least one of those messages.
- During the Interview: Ask open-ended questions, like: “What was your problem and how much was it costing you?” “What results came from my help?” “Is there one instance, as we were working together, that most impressed you?” “How would you describe my personality and working style?” “How do I compare with others in my field?” “What else would you say to someone who was considering my services and/or products?”
- When Crafting the Quote: Use action verbs and descriptive, emotional words. Vary short and longer sentences, and limit the quote to no more than five sentences. Maintain the tone of each client so it doesn’t sound the same.
- Once the Quotes are Approved: Add the quotes to your website, emails and proposals. Request that your clients post their quote to your LinkedIn profile since you can’t do it for them. And, of course, thank them for their testimonials!
I hope this helps you harness the power of gratitude in your business.
If you found these tips from Tricia Molloy of value and are a PMP looking to earn PMI PDUs, you might be interested in her self-paced, downloadable courses at PDUs2Go.com.
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