How to Automate Customer Testimonial Collection

With automated testimonial collection, you can set up a process that will manage the request, collection, and display of praise from happy customers, all without any work from you. This guide will walk you through the steps to take to automate your customer testimonial collection.

72%

 72% of consumers say that positive reviews and testimonials make them trust a business.

88%

88% of customers read online reviews before selecting a business.

79%

79% of online shoppers tend to trust online reviews as much as recommendations from friends and family.

Get a PDF + Our Bonus Testimonial Request Email Templates

Download our guide and get our Testimonial Request Email Templates as a bonus. Just fill out this form, or continue scrolling, to learn:

  • How and when to automatically ask your customers to share a testimonial
  • What process to follow and questions to ask to get meaningful feedback
  • How to manage your testimonials, keep them organized, ad display them for the world to see
  • How much time it takes to set all of this up. (Hint: it’s under an hour!)

1.

About This Guide

Testimonials matter. Having quality, credible testimonials can make or break a sale. Prospective customers want to know that you have have the experience and the skills to deliver on your promises. For this, they look to testimonials, online reviews, and social proof – do you have past customers who can vouch for and recommend your services?


The Problem

If you don’t have great collection of testimonials, chances are good that the biggest hurdle standing in your way is simply asking for them. The good news? There is a simple fix! With the right tools, it is quick and easy to automate asking for testimonials so you can start to have a steady stream of praise coming in from your customers.


Our Goal

Our goal with this guide is to show you just how quick and easy it can be to set up an automated testimonial collection process. This step-by-step guide will walk you through a proven process that you can complete in as little as an hour. Then let it run in the background while you watch the praise roll in.

By following this step-by-step guide, you will learn:

How and when to automatically ask your customers to share a testimonial

What process to follow and questions to ask to get meaningful feedback

How to manage your testimonials, keep them organized, and display them for the world to see

How much time it takes to set all of this up. (Hint: it’s under an hour!)

2.

What You’ll Need

There are a couple of tools you’ll need to get your testimonial automation process up and running. You’ll find the list of categories below with some recommended tools, but there are lots of options out there, and you may even already have all of these as part of the toolset for your organization.

A way to automate emails to your customers

If you have an email marketing platform that supports automation, use that. If not, Mailchimp is a free or inexpensive option. We use Hubspot, which also works great.

A form to collect to testimonials

Your website should have a way for you to create a form that you can send to your customers for them to submit a testimonial, or you can use Google Forms. We use Boast to create our collection form, so we have a single place for viewing and managing submissions.

A platform for organizing and visualizing submissions

You’ll want your collection form to submit to a place where you can view and organize the testimonials you receive. With Boast, we have a dashboard of submitted testimonials, but Google Sheets or Excel are also options.

A way to display testimonials on your website

Your testimonials won’t do much good if prospective customers can’t find them. You’ll want to create a page on your website where you can showcase your praise. Boast provides an embed code that we use to automatically display new testimonials when they are submitted.

3.

Asking for Testimonials

The first thing you’ll need to automate your testimonial collection is an ongoing way to reach out to you customers and ask them to submit their praise. We use Hubspot for all of our customer communication, but most email marketing platforms, like Mailchimp or Constant Contact will do the trick.

Here are some things you’ll need to decide

Who will you ask for a testimonial? Will you ask all of your customers or just a select few?

How will you time the ask? Immediately after they become a customer or will there be a delay?

What will you say to get the feedback you’re looking for? Here are some email templates to get ideas flowing.

How many times will you ask? Will it be a single ask or will you follow up with multiple emails?

With the answers to these questions in hand, you should be ready to build out your workflow in your email marketing or marketing automation platform. It’s time to go into your tool of choice and setup your testimonial request email(s) and automation triggers.

4.

Testimonial Collection Process

We already mentioned that you’ll need a collection form or way for your customers to submit their testimonial. You could have customers simply reply to the email to submit their praise, but that can be clunky and difficult to manage. It can also result in inconsistent answers or testimonials without much substance.

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Ensuring a Smooth Process

For the most automation and best quality testimonials, we recommend creating a form that is linked from the email you send out. This will help simplify the process for your customers as well as your ability to manage submissions. Make sure your email has clear instructions, so your customers aren’t turned off by a complicated process. Also, make sure to be specific with the questions you ask.

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Asking the Right Questions

You’ll want to ask for basic information like name, location, product/service, and a photo to give added credibility. Then think about what questions would elicit the highest quality testimonials. Something like What was your favorite part about our product/working us? or What feature/service was most helpful to you? Providing specific direction will result in better, more useful testimonials.

5.

Testimonial Collection Form

Once you know what questions you want to ask your customers, it’s time to set up your testimonial collection form.

Creating a Collection Form

A couple of options would be to create a form on your website with a landing page that explains what you are looking for, or you could set up a Google Form to send your customers.

We use Boast for our testimonial collection. This allows us to request a photo and video in addition to the text testimonial and also provides an interface for easily managing and organizing testimonials that have been submitted.

Pro Tip: Conditional Thank You Messages

Another useful feature of Boast is Conditional Thank You Messages, which allows us to show a different message based on whether the feedback received is positive or negative. Business can benefit from this feature by sending happy customers to review sites like Google, Facebook, and Yelp to beef up online reviews in addition to testimonials.

Online reviews for businesses

6.

Managing Your Testimonials

Lastly, you’ll need a place for organizing and managing your testimonials once they start rolling in. This is where you’ll keep track of all of your praise so you can use the right social proof in the right places to have the biggest impact on your business.

One option is to keep a spreadsheet. Your form tool may even automatically update a Google Sheet for you.

Our team uses Boast to manage our testimonials, which allows us to tag testimonials and approve them to automatically show up on our website. This creates even more automation to save our team time and make sure our testimonials are up to date without having to worry about remembering to update them manually.

7.

About Boast

Boast helps businesses leverage happy customers to fuel growth.

We’re on a mission to help businesses collect and share customer stories. We do that with guides like this one as well as with software that simplifies the collection, management, and display of customer testimonials.

More than 5,000 organizations rely on Boast for collecting raving customer testimonials. Join them today!

Try Boast for Free ›

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