BY JULIE A. PALM
Sharing customer testimonials widely can drive more shoppers through your doors and onto your website
In the October Tip Sheet, we talked about the importance of testimonials and gave you tips for soliciting feedback from your customers. (You can get a refresher here.)
This month, we want to show you how to put those testimonials to best use—because if customers are saying good things about your business, you want to share those accolades far and wide.
- Showcase testimonials on your website. Devote a section of your site to some of your strongest testimonials. When you’re compiling the list, aim for variety. Happy customers praising all aspects of your business (selection, value, customer service, delivery) is best. Don’t be afraid to include a few that mention a problem—as long as they explain how it was remedied. Rather than turning consumers off, such feedback conveys authenticity and shows how you deal with inevitable errors and misunderstandings. Call the page “Customer Reviews,” “What Customers Are Saying” or even “Testimonials.”
- Sprinkle comments throughout your site, too. Place relevant customer feedback on specific product and customer service pages, suggests digital marketing expert Sujan Patel writing for the Content Marketing Institute in June 2017. “That said, don’t just stick any testimonial on any page of your site—make sure each testimonial is relevant to the page,” Patel says. “That means using general ‘this company/person/product/service is so great’ testimonials on your home page, and placing testimonials praising specific products or services on those corresponding pages.”
- Blast them on social media. “There’s no better place to share customer testimonials than across your social channels,” writes Emily Cullinan in an April 2017 BigCommerce blog post. “Brands that share authentic user-generated content are constantly building more trust with their social audience.” Cullinan is marketing strategy manager for Eyemagine, an Irvine, California-based marketing agency. Make sure your social media calendar showcases testimonials at regular intervals. Depending on your store’s size, weekly or monthly might be appropriate. And don’t use the same testimonial on the same day across platforms. Mix things up. Also remember that short video testimonials are particularly good for social media.
- Flood review sites. These sites increasingly drive traffic to stores and websites. Encourage customers to post their comments on Yelp, Google and sites dedicated to mattresses, too. You want to make sure your store is well-represented everywhere your potential shoppers might be seeking information about mattresses.
- Don’t forget “old-fashioned” media. Customer recommendations were effective marketing messages long before social media and product review websites made them must-haves for retailers. If radio, direct mail, newspapers or other traditional media remain effective tools for your store, incorporate testimonials into those marketing campaigns, as well.
- Be creative. Use testimonials any place you interact with potential customers. Customer feedback can add authenticity to email campaigns. You can incorporate messages on your delivery truck wraps. Work testimonials into paid online ad campaigns. Use them to illustrate points in your blog posts.