Social media users are greeted with a barrage of advertising each time they check their accounts. Studies show that the majority of people don't trust claims made by advertisements. As a coach/ business owner, this can make it hard to connect with your audience, as they're already assuming most claims made by advertisements are false. What do social media audiences trust?
According to Neilsen, 70% of consumers trust testimonials, even when the testimonials come from people that they don't know. When consumers know the person making the testimonial, this number goes even higher- up to 92% of consumers trust a recommendation made by a friend, coworker, or family member. The average consumer checks 11 online reviews before deciding to invest in a product or service. It's clear- trust in advertising has been lost, and your potential audience needs to be assured that you're the real deal. As a coach, it's important to acquire and effectively use customer testimonials to build trust with your audience.
Whether you've been coaching clients for years or you're just starting out, it's a good idea to collect testimonials along the way, from people at all stages of their work with you. Sending out an email to your current clients asking for testimonials can be helpful, but it's important that you guide them in addressing the factors that set your business apart. When simply asked to write a testimonial, many clients will respond with vague positive statements, such as, "Great work!" or "I love this service!" While these things are nice to hear, they don't clue in potential clients to all that you can do to help them move their businesses forward.
When a current client agrees to give a testimonial, ask them specific questions to guide their response. These questions could include:
- How has your life changed as a result of our work together?
- How much time does our work together save you each week?
- What's the most valuable thing you've learned in the time we've been working together?
No matter what questions you choose to ask, leave them open-ended so that your clients explain their responses. You can also explore using video testimonials- actually seeing a person speaking your praises can work wonders in building trust with your potential client base. After you receive the testimonial, be sure to thank your client for their kind words.
A great place to ask people to post their testimonials and reviews is on your Google Business Page. If your business has a physical address, make sure that you have claimed or registered your business on Google. How? Visit https://business.google.com and register your business. Complete the profile to the best of your ability and make sure that the Google Maps location is accurate.
Your Google Business page will not only help people find you, but also give people a place to post their testimonials. People may also ask questions on this page, which is great for engagement and SEO ranking.
Using Testimonials In Social Media
Since testimonials are better received than standard advertising, it's smart to use testimonials in your paid ads. Pairing the testimonial with an image of yourself or your client can help your potential audience connect the words being read with a real, breathing business.
By now, you know where your target audience is likely to spend their social media time, whether that's on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or LinkedIn. Use the features of the platform to your advantage when posting your testimonials. On Instagram, you might use snippets of customer videos in your stories. On Facebook, an image with a few paragraphs of well-written text is most likely too far. On Twitter, a short burst of praise will resonate with your audience. On LinkedIn, copy or screenshot the text from your recommended section.
No matter which platform you're using, the power of numbers is key. Praise from clients is great, but seeing concrete results is what encourages people to click and start thinking about trying your services. Minutes saved per week, the percentage of income growth, increase in the number of clients, and money saved when compared to a similar service can all get clients thinking that it would be smart to give your business a try.
As we've discussed, today's social media user is savvy to advertising techniques. When you post a testimonial, tag the client who gave the testimonial (with their permission, of course). This allows your potential clients to click on their name and see that they're a real person, giving credibility to the testimonial. While creating stellar content and interacting with potential clients are both important, hearing about a client's firsthand experience with you can have a huge impact on building trust.