Word-of-mouth marketing is the number 1 response that I hear when I ask people how they market their business.  Everyone lives by the customer referral; we all do.  The reality is that you can use your website to showcase great customer testimonials when appropriate.  If everyone feels that testimonials are a helpful way to increase word-of-mouth referrals, then it stands to reason that those same people will value testimonials that they read and will put more weight in them when choosing their vendor.

Your website can be an effective marketing tool and can showcase great testimonials from your clients and partners.  Here are a few ideas on how to get some great testimonials from your contacts:

  • Use LinkedIn!  LinkedIn has a recommendation feature that allows you to ask your connections for a recommendation – which is basically a testimonial.
  • Using LinkedIn recommendations shows that the testimonials are true and real, in fact, any user can look your profile up on LinkedIn and see your recommendations.
  • Get recommendations from partners as well as clients. This shows a broad range of successful connections and shows that partners are also willing to refer you to their clients.
  • Create a testimonials page on your website.
  • Use testimonials in your sidebar (if applicable). Use excerpts of the testimonials then link over to the full page with something like “View More Testimonials”.
  • Here are a few other ways to get testimonials:
    • Ask your customers to review your product
    • Ask for feedback after a service is provided
    • Ask for feedback in your monthly newsletter
    • When you receive a compliment, ask the customer to back it up in writing for you, most will gladly do so
    • Video Testimonials are all the rage now.  They allow the user to connect with the person recommending you in a more personal way.  Apple’s iPod Touch has  a video app as part of the camera and can be immediately uploaded to YouTube.  The Flip Video camera is also a good tool and can produce a web-ready video rather quickly.

In summary, customer testimonials are great.  If you want to continue growing your word of mouth marketing, and spreading the good word of your company through the mouths of your partners and customers, then continue to add customer testimonials to your website and use them in all your marketing materials.  It can be very effective!