How To Get Reviews, Testimonials & Case Studies
Let’s talk about how to get reviews, testimonials and case studies.
After delivering services to you customer you need to make sure that the customer is happy with the entire experience and with the results.
If you delivered the service yourself or you’re in constant contact with the customer you will have a good feel for whether the client is happy and surveying the client is optional. If not, then surveying the client should not be optional.
There are many tools available that make this very simple. If there’s anything that is unresolved or needs a discussion then this is the time to do it (before sending the survey).
After completing the survey, if your client seems to be happy with your service, ask them for a review or testimonial. If you’re offering high end services where you’re typically charging more than $10K then I would recommend avoiding reviews and try to get testimonials and case studies.
There are two types of review. You can ask customers to post a review about your services on a 3rd party site like Trust Pilot or you can just post customer reviews on your site.
The obvious advantage of a 3rd party site is that people are more likely to believe that these reviews are real because they cannot be edited by the service provider. The downside is that you cannot delete a bad review.
The advantage of gathering reviews yourself to put on your own website and social channels is that you can use the good reviews and leave out the rest. The obvious downside is that people know that this is possible so they are more likely to think these reviews only include the good reviews (or they are fake).
You should also consider which one of these approaches are taken by your competitors because, even though some people don’t believe reviews, other people think that reviews are the most important factor when making their buying decisions.
Testimonials from real people and real businesses that have a verifiable online presence can be effective. If I don’t know you but I see a testimonial about you from someone that I trust then it goes a long way to making me trust you. Now, in this example, the person that I trust doesn’t have to someone I know. If you offer services and you have a testimonial from the owner of another credible business (that I can actually look up and research) then the testimonial will have a positive effect on my view of your ability to offer the same services to me.
Case studies are more valuable than reviews and testimonials because they give potential clients insight into the type of client you work with, the problems you solve and how you go about solving them. This helps your prospective clients to imagine what it would be like to work with you.
If you have a satisfied client and you can demonstrate a positive outcome for your client and the services you provided are the type of services you want focus on selling in the future, you should ask if the client will agree to participating in a case study.
If you’re just starting, it’s obviously difficult to get case studies because you have no clients (or maybe the small number you do have won’t agree to participating in a case study). In this case, I suggest contact someone you already know that needs your services and offer your services for free.
- You need to make sure that you set up your arrangement with this client as follows:
- You provide an agreed service for free
- The client agrees to allow you to create a case study report and make it publicly viewable on your website. Make sure you have an email or message (or something in writing) confirming this.
- In order to make the client feel comfortable about the publicly disclosed information you can agree to allowing the client to review and edit the final draft of the case study report before it is made public.
This is a sample pitch for a case study:
“I’m setting up a new business that will focus on this local area / this industry / this niche and I want to establish a positive track record. I’m offering to [insert service] for free. In return, I just need you to agree to allow me to make the case study viewable on my website.
I will not disclose any financial or sensitive information about you. I will allow you to review the report before it becomes publicly viewable and I will agree to remove any information that you want removed.
You will not be required to do any work in addition to the usual work required to help me complete [insert service].
In additional to getting my services for free, I am also hoping that the case study will be read by many people and will be a source of free advertising for your business as well as presenting your business in a positive light.”
If you’re pitching a case study to an existing paying customer, then you can try this pitch:
“It was a pleasure working with you. Let me know if you are open to the idea of creating a case study based on [the services / project just completed].
This could be a very beneficial arrangement for both of us. You will not be required to do any work.
I’m hoping the case study will be read by many people so it could become a source of free advertising for your business as well as presenting your business in a positive light.”
Founder of 'I Imagine'
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