Friday, April 28, 2017

"Using Testimonials To Help Tell Our Story"

We have websites to introduce ourselves to people that we want to help. We want people to believe in us and our abilities. We want them to have confidence in us and what we can do to help them. Creating credibility is quite important, and our websites certainly help us do just that.

Before people are willing to work with us, they must like and trust us. Our websites help us to connect with potential clients and customers and to be believable to them - as long as our tone, claims, and content is not exaggerated.

Since people are buying us primarily - then our company, our solutions, and what we can do to help them - the relationship is the first thing that we must sell. They will need to like what we are offering and what we say that we can do, but they will start with liking and buying us first.

Therefore, we want to impress upon people how we can help them, but  if it's just us telling people how great we are and how they would be making a mistake to work with anyone else, it could come across as self-serving and conceited.

So what's the solution? Get someone else to play our song – our customers and clients. Ever heard of testimonials?

Testimonials are great. They are comments and experiences shared with the public by former or present customers and clients that tell the world how we did a good job. It’s their stamp of approval, their recommendation to future customers. It's entirely possible that people who are looking for someone to help them and who are considering talking with us about their situation might be in a similar position or asking themselves the same types of questions about choosing a provider that the testimonials will address.

Testimonials are easy to get because people like to help – especially if they like us and our request for their comments seems reasonable. On the other hand, testimonials may be difficult to get because people who mean well and intend to write something seem to forget about doing them, or they get writer’s block and don’t know what to say.

In most cases, we don’t actually need formal testimonials that we can republish or place in a scrapbook or brag-book like we used to do years ago. It can be an email, a note, or any form really. Three ways that we might increase the likelihood of getting timely testimonials from our client, customers, and strategic partners are (1) when they mention something very positive about their experiences in working with us, ask if they will just send us a quick email to that effect – just a couple of lines, (2) if they seem reluctant to write it, ask if we can paraphrase what they said and attribute it to them (3) have them record a couple of random, positive thoughts about their experiences on our cell phone app for recording memos and then transcribe their comments to use, or (4) use our cell phone to record a brief (up to a minute) video about their experiences (not everyone will want to be on camera, but some will).

Just tell them that we want something that can be shared with other people or possibly posted on our website that will give people an idea of how we might be able to help them - people who are facing a similar situation as what they had when they originally found out about us and reached out to learn about our services and solutions.


Testimonials are powerful tools that carry a lot of weight with people looking for solutions especially when they may not be that familiar with who to engage, what types of questions to ask, or what they should be looking for in a professional - they may not have much previous experience with shopping for remodeling services.

It's great when we can have our clients and customers help tell our story - they are so much better at it than we are.

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Steve HoffackerCAPS, CEAC, SHSS, is a licensed Certified Aging-In-Place Specialist-Master Instructor and best-selling author of universal design books. To learn about this and other programs for aging-in-place or universal design, visit stevehoffacker.com or call 561-685-5555. Also check out the "Aging & Accessibility" groups on Facebook and LinkedIn