Let’s dive into why testimonials are so important for you to grow your life coaching business.
And the step-by-step system to get incredible testimonials that do the selling for you.
I also want to share the best way to leverage your social media testimonials on autopilot, and the dos and don’ts including how long they should be, when to use written and when to use video.
So why are testimonials so important?
Testimonials are the single most important piece of your marketing as they are the most persuasive.
Whatever you try and share about your coaching and the results you can create, it will never be as powerful as what your client testimonials say about those results.
Human beings are hardwired to look around and do what other people are doing. We cannot control this. Once again, think about if you are shopping on Amazon or you’re even looking to go to a movie. If a movie has incredible reviews, you’ve heard about it from every friend, your sister, your cousin, all over the place, you’re much more likely to go see that movie than if one that no one’s heard of, there’s no buzz about it, no one is talking about it.
The simple fact is that testimonials equal more sales and more happy customers, which we all want.
When you make sure to start capturing great testimonials you’ll get more sales which will give you the chance to create more happy customers, and the cycle continues as the effect snowballs.
Testimonials are also the perfect vehicle to tackle objections head-on by letting your happy customers do the hard work for you.
The fact is that no matter what you sell, there are always objections. And these definitely come up in the world of personal development and life coaching. And that’s because deep personal transformation brings up a ton of resistance despite the pain of the problems that exist.
And when you skillfully get testimonials, what you’ll do is that by the questions that you ask, you start to evoke what those customer objections are, what actually stops people from buying from you, and you’ll let happy customers handle that for you so you don’t ever even have to touch that stuff. It’s super powerful.
The bottom line is that if you’re a life coach, you must have testimonials, and I’m going to take you through the step-by-step system to get them.
Step 1: Always Ask & Capture While The Client Coaches With You
Always ask for testimonials during the experience of experiencing your coaching or immediately after. Don’t wait too far down the track otherwise, you risk missing the energy, insights, and enthusiasm that comes from current thinking.
It’s too easy to forget the details and depart from the excitement and emotion if too much time passes.
This is so important.
Think about your experience as a customer.
Typically, when you use a product or a service and you’re just thrilled with, you’ve just had that experience, you have fresh energy, that’s when your best enthusiasm is going to come through; that’s when all the details are fresh in your mind, and a big mistake that I see many life coaches make is they wait too long to ask for testimonials, three months, six months out when the customer, their life has moved on.
One of the best ways to capture one is when they are naturally shared and I see this most commonly in emails, messages and posts as the transformation occurs. So make sure you screenshot as they happen and have a testimonials folder to add to.
When it comes to sharing, you can ask their permission once it has been posted or blur out their name and capture the actual Facebook post or email.
If possible, get some video testimonials by way of requesting a mini-interview, you can also do these as a Facebook Live.
A good off-boarding practice is as important as a great onboarding practice, and that’s because many clients will become great repeat clients and can also be an excellent source of referrals.
That means being clear as to what happens when their time with you concludes, and the second thing you should ask them (after asking if they wish to continue working together) is whether they can share more about their experience and results.
An easy way to do this is in a Google Form or Typeform with a set of standard questions they can quickly answer and you can capture their responses.
Ensure you give them a timeline and an incentive to respond – a $10 Amazon Gift Card is usually enough to get people to take action.
You can call your clients and interview them on the phone. A great idea is to actually record the call, and the advantage here is that you get to ask follow-up questions and tease out even deeper benefits, plus you’ll have the audio testimonial that can be transcribed to a written testimonial.
When you’re interviewing someone on the phone and you ask some questions, if they give you a very kind of light answer, it’s not that detailed, it just kind of skims the surface, you have an opportunity if you’re interviewing them to say, “Oh, I remember that you have these results,” or “I remember when you said this on our phone call,” or you can start to tease some of the deeper language and the deeper benefits that sometimes you don’t get a chance to do in email or even in video.
Step 2: The Questions To Ask
1. What were your hesitations in deciding to invest in life coaching (or you can state your program name here too)?
This powerful question sets up such a great testimonial because it establishes the baseline of the gap, draws out the common objections and gives you great material for the rest of your marketing strategy.
So not only will you have very specific objections and kind of some controversial language that you can put up at the top of your testimonial, but it will also give you very deep insight into the psychology of your buyers and to the obstacles that are preventing many people from buying from you.
So you can start to handle these objections through your content; you can handle them in your sales materials; you can start to address them head-on.
2. What changes have you noticed in your business, your body, your life, or your health?
So you’re looking for specific changes here. Numbers, percentages, anything quantifiable is awesome. So if you are in the weight loss industry and you’re a coach around weight loss, you want to know how many kilos/pounds people lost, how many cms/inches have they lost around their thighs.
If it’s regarding relationships, you could ask how the relationship has changed, and how much conflict has been resolved.
Even if you did productivity, get your clients to give just an accurate guess around how much time they’re saving.
3. What specific feature did you like best about working together?
So this answer provides some concrete information for you about why your coaching is amazing. This also helps prospects imagine themselves coaching with you, which is another advanced marketing move. So the first part of this is important.
When you have concrete information about why your coaching rocks and you really know from your happy clients what they like best, which allows you to do it more. Maybe you can build it into your other services or offerings.
And as for the second element, helping prospective clients imagine themselves coaching with you or investing in one of your programs when you have someone describe a specific feature and they do it in such a way that they paint a picture of them actually using that feature — like those who created a webinar from my swipe and deploy presentation and could give actual call and sales results, that helps those considering investing in my Webinar Success Roadmap or Coach Co programs to think, “I could get my webinar actually created and done after not knowing where to start at all”.
So you get them actually firing their imagination, thinking about what it’s going to be like when they invest in your coaching offers, and that’s a very powerful marketing trigger.
4. How have you benefited from the coaching or program?
Use the name of your offer here as it is a great opportunity to tease out the specific benefits, changes and transformations of using your product. Great for the testimonial and your general marketing.
5. Would you recommend the coaching program? If so, why?
You’re going to get some great quotes or sound bytes here, and it’s perfect if you need to use short testimonials on the fly.
This is such a great opportunity for your clients to say, “Oh,yes! I would absolutely recommend it to everybody I know, and here is why.” You’re going to get really juicy emotional responses, very enthusiastic.
It’s important to remember that the most important driver for getting great testimonials (besides actually asking for them) is to make sure your offers deliver.
So make sure that your coaching, service delivery, connection, care and experience is as great as you can make it. That in and of itself is going to get people talking about you.
6. Is there anything else you’d like to add?
I love this question because it gives your customer a chance to offer up even more love for your coaching or give you valuable feedback to help make it even better.
Even if a customer is very happy, they may have noticed certain experiences, certain glitches, certain aspects of whatever you sold that they think could be improved.
And when people are a fan, they’re going to be happy to say, “I loved everything but this little thing was a bit clunky, and maybe you can try this next time.”
They’ll give you the exact information that you need to take your products and services up to the next level if you give them an opportunity to talk to you.
7. Would you be willing to be interviewed by me at a later point in time?
This is a great way to set up a video testimonial at a later date. You can record a video interview with anyone all over the world, but this lets you know who’s willing to kind of take it to the next level.
So if you’ve done an automated form or survey and you’ve got some great stuff but you realized, “Wow, there’s a great story to expand on,” and you just have that sense that they would say so much more, this is a great way to see who would be open to doing a video testimonial, and then you can just start scheduling it and making it happen.
Step 3: Get Maximum Mileage From Your Testimonials
1. Screenshot Social Media Posts
You will usually find these in your paid or free Facebook groups, so make sure you snap them and save them so you can use them on your sales pages and website. These screenshots carry much more weight than you just adding the text and names to your site.
2. Use Reviews
You can request your clients to leave a review on your Facebook Page or even use a service like Trust Pilot to bump up your cred, but obviously, be aware that there is also the chance of negative posting that you can’t control.
Step 4: Follow The Best Practices
Whenever possible, use your customer’s full name, where they live, their profession or website, and their picture. Obviously, get permission from there. Ask them to send you their favourite picture especially if you deal with women. All of us want to have our favourite picture online, not something that someone found randomly.
Next, the length. Make sure your testimonials are as short and to the point as possible. You can edit testimonials for clarity. Just make sure you have your client’s permission.
Next, you want potential clients to see themselves in your testimonials and that includes diversity” This is so important. When people land on a website, they are looking to see people like themselves. You have to make sure that your testimonials reflect the struggles and desires of your ideal customers.
If you’re anything like me, asking for testimonials brings up some weird fears of not being liked or expecting your clients to resent giving you a testimonial, or thinking that if they do it will be pretty lacklustre.
And at times it may well be, or they just get busy and don’t get around to it.
Either way, there’s no need to make it mean anything more than what they actually share, and if they don’t share you don’t need to create any unhelpful thoughts that can attack your self-confidence down the track.
So, take action now…
Go out there and get yourself some amazing testimonials. They really are worth their weight in gold.
And if you want to go deeper, grab my free testimonials guide at www.victoriagibson.com/testimonials