Testimonials are a good thing, right?

Not always, no!

“I loved working with [insert your name here]” – nice, but not really useful.

“I felt supported all the way” – again, reassuring to a prospective client, but too vague to be especially helpful.

And anyway, let’s face it, any testimonial is going to say positive things about “us” … and the prospective clients know this!

So how do we make testimonials more useful?

What’s more, how can we gather more testimonials, more easily?

Here’s an answer to both questions: don’t ask for a testimonial – have a conversation instead.

Have a “chat” with your client. Record it. Get it transcribed.

Now you have real feedback in their words.

And you can extract the parts from the conversation which … help the prospective client realise THEY are in the same position as THIS client used to be!

Read that again – it’s important.

And how does that recorded conversation work?

Like this: ask 4 questions. Follow up with further questions when it seems natural and helpful to do so. What you’ll have in the recording will be gold for you.

The Four Questions

These: (note, these aren’t a script – these are the words you need to use – ask them in your own way, in your own style, in your own “language” … just take the idea from here and make it “you”)

1. What was happening in your business / life before we started working together. (Follow up: what were the consequences of that? What effect was this having?)

2. What kind of support / help / solution were you thinking about to help solve this? (Follow up: what concerns / fears / reservations did you have about any particular solution?)

3. What’s been the impact / effect / result of working with us – how has your situation changed? (Follow up: what are the consequences of this improvement?)

4. What would you say to anyone else who’s in the situation you described earlier, who is looking for help and may be thinking about working with us? (Follow up: what was it that make you finally decide to “go for it” and work with us?)

These questions will produce answers which are useful for your future clients. Those people will recognise “oh, that’s me too – I’m experiencing that problem”. They’ll hear how someone else’s thought process mirrors their own, and they’ll find reassurance in making this same decision … to work with you.

And when you record it, you may have a video to post (interviews videoed on your phone video are totally fine – you’re not looking for high production value, you’re looking to provide helpful information.

Transcribing The Video

You can strip the audio out from the video, and get it transcribed (you can get a 10 minute conversation fully transcribed for £1 – £10 … there’s really no excuse not to do this!)

You can turn that transcript into a well-written version as a whole, and you can take extracts and use different points in different places across your website, in brochures, in presentations … anywhere and everywhere that’s useful for you.

All from a “quick 10 minute chat” that’s recorded.

After all, a testimonial is not one that simply makes us look good … it’s one that demonstrates the effect clients have from working with us.

Do this and listen for what your future clients say.

Makes sense?