Developing a collection of outstanding client testimonials means not only delivering a great experience, but also knowing how and when to ask your client for their thoughts. If you ask too soon, they might not be ready, but if you delay too long it might be too late. Look for one or more of these 12 signs it’s time to request a client testimonial and you’ll know when to get your testimonial request emails, phone call or face-to-face meeting ready.
12 Signs It’s Time to Request a Client Testimonial
1. The Praise Email
If you consistently impress your clients, you’ve no doubt received more than one email full of praise. Your client has already gone out of their way to tell you what a great job you’ve done. This is the perfect time to ask for a customer testimonial. Make it easy for your client to submit a testimonial online and you can turn your high praise email into an official client testimonial.
2. A Stellar Meeting
When you meet with your client, sometimes everything just goes smoothly. Maybe you’ve delivered great news or you’ve reached a milestone together. For whatever reason, you know your client will leave your office feeling satisfied. This is a good time to ask for a client testimonial. Have question prompts and a way to record their testimonial ready, so you can get their information right away.
3. Tremendous Results
Some clients experience results that are even better than expected. When you deliver these results to your client, or when they see them for the first time, they’ll be likely to give a client testimonial. Explain the impact of the results if it’s not clear and give your client a moment to enjoy them before asking. Keep in mind that lawful testimonials must give an accurate representation of expected results; you may need to mention that this client’s results, though possible, aren’t typical.
4. Other Reviews
It’s good practice to audit your business reputation online and see what customers are saying. This might be a business review site like Yelp or an industry-specific review site like lawyers.com. As you regularly check in, you may notice previous clients that have talked about your good work unsolicited. If you recognize the name on the review, contact them again to thank them and ask for a client testimonial you can use for your website or marketing materials. If you don’t recognize the name, look at the date the review was posted and see what clients you served near that time.
5. Problem Solved
It doesn’t always take tremendous results to make a big impact; you just need to make a big impact on that client’s life. If your product or service solved a problem your client had, ask them to explain their experience in a client testimonial. Remember, your solution doesn’t have to be earth-shattering to be impactful; you may have simply saved them time, given them confidence, or explained a system they didn’t understand.
6. Parting Ways
Ideally, you would like happy clients to return to your business or maintain an ongoing business relationship, but this isn’t always possible. In many cases, your job has a beginning and ending. Your client may also be relocating out of the area, or their needs have changed. If your business partnership is near its end, ask your loyal customer to mark the occasion with a client testimonial.
7. Contract Renewal
In some industries, clients may work with their preferred businesses for years. If they renew their contract with you or make another long-term commitment, they clearly enjoy working with you. As you thank them for renewing and outline the plan for another fantastic year, ask if they would answer a few questions about your work so far and give a client testimonial.
8. Plan Upgrade
If you offer tiers of service and a customer decides to upgrade, their needs may have changed, they may have new confidence in your business, or both. Take this opportunity to reconnect with your client; thank them for their business, explain the new capabilities of their service, and ask for a client testimonial.
The goal of testimonials is to show the quality of work you do and inspire confidence and trust through social proof. If a client’s friend, family member, or business associate contacts you, your client has already made an informal testimonial. When you thank them for their recommendation, ask if they will repeat what they said to their associate in an official client testimonial.
10. Positive Customer Survey
Conducting regular surveys on customer happiness is a good way to make sure your business relationships are strong and your own performance is on track. When customers fill out a positive survey, send a response with a client testimonial request. You can even automate this process with email triggers and a testimonial gathering landing page to save time.
11. Implementing Changes
Whether you make a small change to your terms of service, you add new services to your office, or you completely revamp your business model, it’s essential to keep your customers in the loop. Hopefully, the changes you’ve made are informed by feedback you previously received. Once your clients have had a chance to use and adapt to the new changes, ask them how they feel. Reply to positive sentiment with a client testimonial request.
12. After an Event
If you see your client at a tradeshow, convention, or another industry event, ask them how business is going. This extra familiarity can go a long ways towards gathering testimonials. During or after the event, follow up and ask them to submit a client testimonial.
If you’ve noticed any of these signs, it’s time to ask for a client testimonial! Asking for testimonials can be difficult at first, but it helps to have a system in place, and to know when the timing is right. Make it easy to submit testimonials, continue to deliver a terrific experience and you’ll quickly develop a list of client testimonials.