How many times have you bought something solely based on the recommendation of a friend or family member? That’s what I thought! That’s the power of testimonials.

Don’t Overlook This Key Ingredient

In the recipe for a successful business, customer testimonials are a key ingredient. People want social proof that your product or service is worth their time and money. One of the best ways for prospects to get proof is by reading customers’ stories about their experience with your business.

People love a good story because it can help them to relate and feel reassured. That sense of connection galvanizes new customers to try your business. In fact, the best stories can make customers buy something they don’t even want or need — even if they have to pay more for the item.

This article is for business owners who have few or no customer testimonials, but would like to obtain customer feedback on a more consistent basis. It doesn’t take a lot of time but the rewards to your business are immense. Here’s the five-step process to get more testimonials:

1 – Ask and You Shall Receive

In response to an outstanding experience with your business, some loyal customers will write a testimonial on Google, Trustpilot or Facebook without having to be prompted. But most customers will require a gentle nudge. The first step is to ask for the testimonial. The easy way to do that is with a post-purchase email or text message. Important: Make sure the customer has opted-in to receive email and/or text messages from your business.

2 – Make It Easy

Don’t assume that your customers know how or where to leave a review. Tell them and make sure the process is super simple. In your email or text message, remember to include step-by-step instructions for posting a review, as well as a direct link to where they can post it.

3 – Thank Them

Some business owners fail to recognize the customer’s effort when they leave a review. This is a missed opportunity in terms of relationship-building. When a customer leaves a review, make sure to acknowledge them with a brief message of thanks. Example:

That’s amazing to hear, Michelle! Thank you for taking the time to post your review and for your especially kind words! If you ever need us in the future, we’ll be here. We can’t wait to serve you!

4 – Reward Them

Do you have a customer rewards program? Repeat reviewers should be rewarded for going above and beyond. You can show your appreciation to these loyal customers with a reward like a gift card or discount towards their next purchase. It’s on opportunity to deepen the relationship and keep it moving forward.

5 – Make It a Habit

Make customer outreach a regular habit. Put an alert in your phone or write a reminder in your calendar to contact a realistic number of customers each week. Better yet, automate the process with your email marketing tool. After a customer makes a purchase, the purchase will trigger an automatic email request for feedback.

Customer Reviews & Relationships: Your Business’ Key Growth Factor

Customer testimonials are a strong asset in your business’ success plan. Strive to obtain two new testimonials each week. In one year, you could have over 100 customer stories that basically do customer acquisition for you. These online stories act as powerful referrals, encouraging countless potential customers to try out your business.

I love generating positive customer testimonials for small business owners and letting them bask in the results. Do you struggle to get fresh customer reviews on a regular basis or want to start a referral marketing campaign? Let’s talk!