Customer testimonials are the little siblings to case studies. They aren’t as in-depth, problem/solution oriented, or focused on demonstrating quantitative results.
However, testimonials offer a number of advantages as marketing content: they are quick hitters with real people behind them. Potential customers can relate to them. They provide legitimate support for your company’s claims. And they’re tremendously versatile.
Satisfied customers who say good things about your company, products, and services are like having extra sales reps on your team. Testimonials typically center around a single theme: why a customer chose to work with your company, what’s special about your product, or a major benefit the customer realized.
You can acquire customer testimonials in a number of ways: they can show up on product review websites. You can solicit them from loyal and satisfied customers. They can filter through your customer support and service departments. However you acquire customer testimonials, make sure your customer agrees you can use them in your marketing efforts, and then treat those testimonials like gold.
Here are nine ways to use customer testimonials:
1. Website customer testimonial page
It’s common to find such a page on almost any company’s website. Be sure to create prominent links to this page and populate it with quotes, photos of your customers, and visible customer logos. If your company offers a wide variety of products and services, you may need to segment the testimonials accordingly or even create separate testimonial pages.
2. In social media
You can publish customer testimonials to one of your social media profiles, and while you’re at it do your customer a favor and link to their website. You could use a particularly powerful testimonial in a graphic header on your profile page. Or stick the testimonial to the top of your feed.
3. Press releases
Most company press releases about product launches include a quote or two from customers. If one of your customer testimonials fits with the message for the press release, paste it right in.
4. Articles and blog posts
Whether you’re writing an article for a media pitch or a post for your company blog, weave in a customer testimonial that’s relevant to the topic. If your blog design allows for it, use a semi-permanent sidebar that displays a number of customer testimonials, much like you would on a website page of customer testimonials.
5. Display ads
Digital or print display ads are excellent places to include a short customer quote. The quote could be a component of the ad or the entirety of the ad itself (along with a call to action, of course).
6. Sales presentations
Offer your sales team a number of slides with customer testimonials to include in their client presentations. Depending on their length, several testimonials could fit on one slide. Or you can create single slides with customer photos and quotes—these can make great transition slides between sections of a presentation.
7. Product packaging
Yes, this is post-sale usage of a customer testimonial, but it’s always a good idea to reinforce to new customers that you have many satisfied customers who have also purchased your products. Print directly on packaging, slip an insert into a box, or display a testimonial or two while a software product downloads and installs.
8. Job listings
It’s a competitive market for good talent. Tip the scales in your favor by using customer testimonials in your recruiting efforts. Job candidates will be more interested in working for a company that has satisfied customers willing to publicly attest to the benefits of your products and company.
Customer testimonials can take the form of short videos. Fancy production values are not required. Your customers can even film themselves talking about the value and benefits they’ve experienced working with your company. Use the videos on your website, in email marketing, and in social media.