Now that we have looked at some effective ways testimonials can be utilized, there is a little more to it. Martin, Wentzel and Tomczak (2008) looked at how customers respond to testimonials. They divided testimonials as a tool into 2 groups. One group is testimonials presented by a typical person. The other group is testimonials presented by celebrities. They also found that consumers fall into 2 general categories. One group tends to be more interested in the features and performance of the product. The other category more concerned with style and benefits of a product.
The correlation that was found is an interesting and enlightening one. The group of consumers more concerned with a products features are more influenced by the endorsement of a typical person who has used the product. The category more attuned to style and product benefits tend to be more influenced by a celebrity testimonial. They also found that these style-conscious consumers are best reached with testimonials when these consumers are the target market. An example would be if you were a high-end clothier and you placed print advertising in the Puget Sound Business Journal using Pete Carroll as a spokesperson.
If you tend to offer products and/or services that are more for a functional purpose, then utilize testimonials from real customers. On the other hand, if offering that offer style (clothes, jewelry, cars etc.) then you may benefit from having your product or service endorse by a celebrity.
Either way you go, you will benefit from letting your satisfied customers promote your business. To help gain more customers for positive reviews, over-deliver and provide incentives to induce testimonials. Keep in mind 1 out of 6 referrals from testimonials will buy. These referrals will tend to stay loyal to you 4 times longer and will be two and a half more apt to refer you.
What are you waiting for? Start using those reviews, testimonials and endorsements. If you are not using them, do so. If you have not looked into acquiring these tools, start with customers when they buy your product or service. Ask for customer reviews on your website. Use the power of your loyal customers to assist your company to long-term growth.
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Martin, B., Wetzel, D. & Tomczak, T. (2008 Spring), Effects of Susceptibility to Normative Influence and Type of Testimonial on Attitudes Towards Print Advertising. [15 pages] Journal of Advertising. Available: http://proquest.umi.comTweet