By Tom Polanski
When it comes to running a business, nothing helps convince new buyers to do business with you more than referrals, testimonials and success stories. But how do you get these “gold nuggets” and how do you use them effectively? Here’s how.
1. Describe a problem or issue to be overcome – It can be as simple as, “I needed a hairstylist who knew how to braid my daughter’s hair – because I had no idea how to do it the way she liked.” Or you can truly create a “save the day” moment that will help the prospective customer visualize how your company helped save a truly disastrous moment – as in, “I had over 1,000 hungry guests and my caterer was nowhere to be found!”
2. Talk briefly about the solution – This is where you get to shine. Have your customer talk about how your business helped them come through in a pinch. You don’t have to be detailed with the answer if it’s extremely technical, but it does help demonstrate your expertise if it’s something specific or unique to the industry.
3. Get permission to use it – This is the most crucial aspect of collecting and using success stories. Ask your client for permission to use it. If they’d rather you not use their name or business name (this can happen if they don’t want to “look bad” in the eyes of their own customers), use a more generic industry category, such as “our client in the real estate business”.
4. Use it everywhere! In your brochure, on your website, and even in a press release. You want to help spread the word about how your business has helped others – and nothing helps generate referrals like someone else’s recommendation!
Remember, always ask for testimonials and feedback after a job well done. You never know what you’ll get – and saving and using them in the future will help bring more business your way. Good luck!