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It's hard to deny that clients today are more skeptical than ever. One of the most difficult challenges that each of us faces as professionals is to come up with a convincing response to particularly critical questions: "As a prospective client, tell me please, why should I choose you (your firm or your practice group)? What makes you distinctive, and what added value do you bring to my business matters that I cannot get anywhere else?"
Now, you might be able to answer that question with a bold assertion, and making a bold claim may be important to get your audience's attention. However, supporting that claim is even more critical if you want to convert attention into action. To support any assertion, proof speaks the loudest.
The problem is, when you say something about yourself, true or not, it's just bragging. When other people say it about you, it's providing proof. That is the essence of any testimonial. It's the essence of marketing itself to prove that you have something meaningful to offer and to provide evidence that you are better than your competition by producing a few forceful and persuasive testimonials.
A testimonial is usually a written communication from a client that talks about what is special about you and your firm. Preferably, a testimonial should describe the work that was undertaken, highlighting the success achieved, and include a direct or indirect comment clearly suggesting that the client is happy to recommend you.
The power of a testimonial or of someone endorsing your service can unlock the subconscious minds of your target audiences. It is the tangible evidence that allows you to showcase specific ways in which you are meaningfully differentiated from competitors.
Testimonials can be used to say things about your firm and your services that you could never say yourself. Most importantly they should:
* Evidence success. Clients want to work with those firms that have a track record for producing results. "Smart & Smarter guided us through all of the pitfalls involved in outsourcing our manufacturing operations and helped us save more than $7 million in operating costs in the first year." Ask yourself whether any of your current client testimonials are similar to this one for Smart & Smarter and make you want to do business with your firm.
* Build trust. When prospective clients read a testimonial about how you and …