How to Get Customer Testimonials for Your Direct Response Offers
Here is a basic truth about human nature: We are, by nature, followers—all of us. We feel more comfortable and more secure when we are following well-trod paths, doing what others have done before us. This is certainly true when it comes to purchasing products. Before we shell out our hard-earned money on a new product or service, we like to know that others have bought the same thing—and been satisfied with it.
All of this is a roundabout way of saying that customer testimonials can go a long way toward closing sales, and toward making your sales copy more impacting and effective. For direct response marketers, then, obtaining customer testimonials is massively useful—but it can also be hard to do. There are, however, a few techniques any direct response marketer can use to help obtain some of those precious endorsements and consumer reviews.
Offer an Incentive
Asking for something for nothing seldom works, so, when you solicit clients for testimonials, sweeten the deal. Offer them something in return. Provide them with an incentive for their feedback.
Be careful about what you offer, though. A good bet is to offer some of your products, for free—because this will attract enthusiastic comments from customers who really, truly, genuinely like what you’re offering. An alternative is to offer something a little bit more generic, like cash, but then you run the risk of getting a lot of vague or disingenuous testimonials from folks who don’t necessarily have any great enthusiasm for your products.
Using Social Media
You can also glean reviews from social media sites. Facebook will allow you to set up a Reviews section, for example, which you can use to encourage your friends and fans to leave some feedback. Also make sure you make use of more specialized, niche review sites; if you’ve got a lot of travel offers, for example, you can perhaps get some reviews via travel sites like Expedia or Travelocity.
Of course, e-mail works, too. Once you put together your incentive program, e-mail it to your whole client list. You might even make it look nice, as an HTML page, and send the link to your valued customers.
A final word of advice: Remember that your products are probably going to draw a lot of reviews that you never even asked for—and keeping abreast of those reviews is crucial. Set up some Google alerts and use social listening programs to track your brand mentions on Twitter. See what people are saying about your offers—and if you stumble across someone who really seems to dig what you’re selling, reach out to that person and ask if you can use their words as an official testimonial
It is not necessarily an easy or a quick thing, compiling legitimate consumer reviews—but it does work, and it will help you close sales. Once you get some reviews, compile them all on a “Testimonials” page, but also use them throughout your Web content. Make every effort to help potential customers feel comfortable with what you are offering!
Guest author Rich Gorman is a revered direct response marketer, blogger, and expert of online money making.