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Using customer testimonials to promote and grow your SME

Most business owners agree that word-of-mouth recommendations are the best promotions their businesses can receive. No matter how hard you try to nurture potential customers and educate them about your products and services, many will prefer to hear about other people’s experiences with your brand before making any crucial purchasing decisions. This is why customer feedback plays a vital role in your business growth. When people find others recommending your business, it reassures them that you’re credible and that your products and services are as effective as you claim.

In a previous blog, we shared five strategies for encouraging customers to write reviews for your small business. In this blog, we’re giving you ideas to effectively use those reviews to boost your business growth.

Feature testimonials on your website

An effective way to leverage customer testimonials is to highlight them in places your leads go to learn about your business. This likely includes your website’s homepage, pricing page, or any particular landing page that gets a lot of attention/clicks. You can use a heat map to learn how users interact with your website and where they spend the most time. Based on this information, you can decide where you’d like your testimonials to be positioned. As important as it is to feature testimonials on your website, the key to making them work is knowing how to use them sparingly and picking the right testimonials for the context. For example, if you want to feature a testimonial on your pricing page, it makes more sense to share one where a customer describes the value of your product than one that talks about why the customer loves a specific feature of your product. This way, you can subtly reinforce that your products are priced competitively, and ideally, prompt a purchase.

Create a customer testimonial page

People are going to spend time learning about your business, especially if they plan to spend money. You must ensure that they come across testimonials that give them the confidence to choose you over your competitors. The first step is convincing your loyal customers to share a detailed account of why they love your business. Once you find enough people willing to share their positive experiences, set up a dedicated customer testimonial page on your website. You can use that space to feature case studies that go into more detail about how your customers benefit from your business. When potential customers get more information about how you tackle their pain points, they are more likely to trust you. You can group your case studies to make it easy for people to refer to them, and identify the ones that are most relevant. For example, at Zoho, we allow users to filter case studies based on their country and industry.

Leverage social media interactions

There may be several reasons why clients don’t leave reviews for your business, even if they make repeat purchases. As a result, you might not have enough testimonials to share and promote. One way to remedy this is to leverage your social media interactions. Whenever you receive a positive comment on your post or find someone mentioning your business on their social profile, check to see if it’s from a legitimate customer. If it is, you can highlight them on your social profile, or even feature them on your website (with their permission). When people observe positive interactions between you and your customers on social media, they know your customers are happy doing business with you.

Use testimonials in your promotional campaigns

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Advertisements have huge potential for strengthening your brand image. In the midst of brands making unreasonable promises to attract attention, sharing authentic content about your customers’ real experiences can boost your lead generation efforts. While the effectiveness of an ad campaign depends on a lot of factors, it’s typically helpful to show the world the positive experiences people have with your brand. Whether it’s a specific quote from a customer or a detailed testimonial video, ensure that the content you use meets the campaign’s objective and has the potential to spark curiosity among potential leads.

Embrace negative feedback

Regardless of how well you try to manage your business, there may be occasions when you unwittingly frustrate your customers. Dissatisfied clients may post a negative review about your business on a public forum. In these circumstances, your first response should be to reply to them promptly and acknowledge the situation. Even if it’s not your fault, it is always best practice to hear the customer’s concerns and politely try to rectify the situation. Let them know that you’re willing to further support them over a phone call. When others see you responding to critical reviews, it shows them that you care about your customers and are willing to take responsibility for your actions. This helps you develop a positive reputation and may even make the reviewer change their impression of your brand.

We hope this blog gives you the inspiration to make the best use of your customer testimonials. Are there any more ideas you’d like to suggest? Let us know in the comments below.

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