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Posted: 14th Feb 2012 - 11:04 Quote

I have a question.

Have you ever asked for a testimonial?

If not, why not?

I have to admit on 4n, we've been very lucky and have received a really nice amount of testimonials. I have used these to showcase our services to other non 4n members and prospective clients (alongside our testimonial page on website and other websites). But recently, it seems (to me anyway) that this has calmed down a little.

Personally, logging in - seeing a big member feedback thread for another member with a testimonial speaks volumes - and increases the power of online networking and using forums to promote your business.

I would say - if someone has done good - then promote them and say thanks. Nothing is a greater sales tool for your business than other people selling your service for you and prospective clients who may not be able to meet you face to face often do read these testmonials before making their decision.

/bringingbackpeaceandlovetotheforum

 

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Peter Maynard
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Posted: 14th Feb 2012 - 12:53 Quote

I agree with this 100% Katie.

I think asking for a testimonial is fine.  I also read testimonials when deciding whether to do business with anyone, and they play a huge part in my decision about whether to go ahead.

A couple of things I do think about giving testimonials though: first, make it clear whether it relates to their service/business, or whether it is just because they have been helpful/supportive in some other way.

And second, if A gives a testimonial for B, and B reciprocates very soon thereafter, I normally discount them, as I wonder whether they were really justified or just a I'll-do-one-for-you, you-do-one-for-me-situation.

And all power to the "bringbackpeaceandlovetothe forum" campaign!!

 

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Gareth Coxon
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Posted: 14th Feb 2012 - 14:24 Quote

I don't tend to ask, maybe I should be?

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Gareth Mailer
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Posted: 14th Feb 2012 - 14:26 Quote
Quote:

I don't tend to ask, maybe I should be?

Definitely. 

I do - makes an impact and typically people are already thinking highly about you anyway, might as well get them to right it down. 

 

 

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Dave Bradburn
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Posted: 14th Feb 2012 - 14:33 Quote
Quote:

I agree with this 100% Katie.

I think asking for a testimonial is fine.  I also read testimonials when deciding whether to do business with anyone, and they play a huge part in my decision about whether to go ahead.

A couple of things I do think about giving testimonials though: first, make it clear whether it relates to their service/business, or whether it is just because they have been helpful/supportive in some other way.

And second, if A gives a testimonial for B, and B reciprocates very soon thereafter, I normally discount them, as I wonder whether they were really justified or just a I'll-do-one-for-you, you-do-one-for-me-situation.

And all power to the "bringbackpeaceandlovetothe forum" campaign!!

 

Yeah, that always make me a little suspicious, although I wouldn't say I then discount them - I'm just a bit more cautious of the motives. They may well be both legitimate and completely genuine though, with one prompting the other to to be given. 

I've occasionally requested them but it's a good while ago now. I should probably ask more often.

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Dave Bradburn
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Posted: 14th Feb 2012 - 14:38 Quote

On a related point, do you value testimonials when they're just on a company's own website or literature rather then on somewhere like here or LinkedIn, where it's far harder for them to be edited/invented? I've heard people say they see them as meaningless in those situations. Personally I disagree provided there is someone's name and/or company against them. The anonymous ones I see as holding little value though (although it may depend on the sector - in some circumstances it may be perfectly understandable that someone wouldn't want their name on view).

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Posted: 14th Feb 2012 - 14:43 Quote

Personally I prefer testimonials where I can put a name/face to the words - so linkedin/4n/video always works really well - on a website at any rate

Our google checkout testimonials for Answer/PureJAM are also good as it's people marking the transaction after it's gone through - always from a real source (qualified on google) and from a wide range of people.

Think it depends how they are displayed and who they are from. It's easy to be sceptical of some of the testimonials left without something to qualify them. When used properly though, very very powerful tool.

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Stefan Thomas
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Posted: 14th Feb 2012 - 14:45 Quote

I have never asked for a testimonial, would feel a bit weird doing so to me (and accept that other people like to).

 

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Posted: 14th Feb 2012 - 14:49 Quote
Quote:

I don't tend to ask, maybe I should be?

Me either. In fact, I asked for the first time this morning which then prompted this thread.

It's a valuable sales tool and if you've provided a service for someone, then why not?!

Not sure how I would ask the question though!

 

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Chris Maslin
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Posted: 14th Feb 2012 - 15:20 Quote
Quote:

On a related point, do you value testimonials when they're just on a company's own website or literature rather then on somewhere like here or LinkedIn, where it's far harder for them to be edited/invented? I've heard people say they see them as meaningless in those situations. Personally I disagree provided there is someone's name and/or company against them.

Aah, the wonderful testimonial from "Mr S from London" or something equally specific!  Those do nothing for me.

I've never asked for a testimonial, and personally have found it a bit annoying when others have asked for them from me.  Normally it's just after receiving fairly average service...but what can you do?  If they've specifically asked me, and I don't given one, they'll probably notice and be offended.  If I provide one along the lines of "Joe Bloggs did this for us and it was ok" then it probably does more harm than good.  In a typically British way I find it puts me in a slightly awkward spot so I for one hate it.

Maslins LtdMVL Online Ltd

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Catherine McMillan
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Posted: 14th Feb 2012 - 15:25 Quote
Quote:

On a related point, do you value testimonials when they're just on a company's own website or literature rather then on somewhere like here or LinkedIn, where it's far harder for them to be edited/invented? I've heard people say they see them as meaningless in those situations. Personally I disagree provided there is someone's name and/or company against them. The anonymous ones I see as holding little value though (although it may depend on the sector - in some circumstances it may be perfectly understandable that someone wouldn't want their name on view).

I have just put up a load of Testimonials on a new website. This time I haven't included the Clients Name or Company,  instead I am trying to encourage prospective clients to contact me so that they can speak to my clients do you think this is a viable strategy?

 

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Chris Dixon
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Posted: 14th Feb 2012 - 15:37 Quote

Ah yes the Mr W, Neasden quotes - "A boon to the elderly ....."

I've been asked for testimonials from 4Sighters, suppliers (and their websites), customers (usually asking me to tell people they are of good standing). I've never asked for one myself, nor do I place much emphasis on the back slapping ones on forums, especially the ones on LinkedIn that invariaby induce nausea.

I do ask people for feedback though, that way they can tell me if there was anything they would have liked done differently, or better.

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Catherine McMillan
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Posted: 14th Feb 2012 - 15:44 Quote
Quote:

Ah yes the Mr W, Neasden quotes - "A boon to the elderly ....."

I've been asked for testimonials from 4Sighters, suppliers (and their websites), customers (usually asking me to tell people they are of good standing). I've never asked for one myself, nor do I place much emphasis on the back slapping ones on forums, especially the ones on LinkedIn that invariaby induce nausea.

I do ask people for feedback though, that way they can tell me if there was anything they would have liked done differently, or better.

 

Yes you are right about feedback, when I was asking for Testimonials I called it Feedback and said how I wanted to use it. Its a very positive thing to do as you can see where you stand with clients - if they don't think much of you they probably wont respond. this is what I have just put up, I hope it won't backfire but can't see how it can:

Here are just a few recent comments. I have been in business for over 12 years so there are many more. Please don't hesitate to send an email or give me a call on 07504 546256 and I can arrange for you to speak direct to some of my clients. 

 

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Ian Hellary
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Posted: 14th Feb 2012 - 17:18 Quote

I always ask for feedback from clients and from people if i have not been able to win the contract as i think its just as important to know where you fell short for the future (how can you improve if you dont?)

I would never put a testimonial on a proposal for a new client but would add that i could send contact details if they would like to contact them directly. I think people are a little wary if as been mentioned earlier you see 'Mrs S from London' said i wouldn't hesitate......blah blah blah, the company is not going to put anything negative up are they? If you give contact details and let them call it is unbiased. 

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Liam Hamilton
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Posted: 14th Feb 2012 - 17:25 Quote
Quote:
Quote:

On a related point, do you value testimonials when they're just on a company's own website or literature rather then on somewhere like here or LinkedIn, where it's far harder for them to be edited/invented? I've heard people say they see them as meaningless in those situations. Personally I disagree provided there is someone's name and/or company against them.

Aah, the wonderful testimonial from "Mr S from London" or something equally specific!  Those do nothing for me.

I've never asked for a testimonial, and personally have found it a bit annoying when others have asked for them from me.  Normally it's just after receiving fairly average service...but what can you do?  If they've specifically asked me, and I don't given one, they'll probably notice and be offended.  If I provide one along the lines of "Joe Bloggs did this for us and it was ok" then it probably does more harm than good.  In a typically British way I find it puts me in a slightly awkward spot so I for one hate it.

We do ask, and have some on LinkedIn: However, we only ever ask by e-mail, invite or as part of a feedback survey. This way people don't feel quite so pressured to do it - they can so to speak igonre the e-mail or question. Face to Face would just be difficult, I think by phone would be as bad!

 

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