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7 Simple But Powerful Customer Testimonial Examples You Can Steal

  • Conversion Rate Optimization

It’s happened to me. And if you’re reading this, chances are it’s happened to you, too.

You go above and beyond for a customer and, in return, ask for a testimonial.

And when you do?

Crickets.

No reply. No glowing testimonial. And no social proof for your brand.

Well, not anymore.

Today, I’m going to show you the seven types of customer testimonials you need in your marketing to drive more conversions, increase your bottom line, and instill brand loyalty.

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1. Quote Testimonials

There are three types of quote testimonial.

  1. Quote;
  2. Quote with hero image; and
  3. Quote with hero image and call-to-action (CTA)

Let’s discuss each briefly.

i. Quotes

We’re all familiar with them. And if you were lucky enough to have a college yearbook, you might have been asked to give one to accompany your photo:

Quotes are one of the earliest types of testimonial (and one of the easiest to acquire). First appearing in newspapers, quotes are now commonplace on product pages. They serve the purpose of instilling visitors with the confidence that the purchase they’re thinking of making is a good decision.

Poo~Pourri uses a slider on its homepage to feature their testimonials:

Adding additional features like a slider—or in Poo~Pourri’s case, a slider with a “star” rating—gives readers more to engage with and legitimizes the testimonials further.

ii. Quotes With a Hero Image

Quotes, while being easy to gather, are also easy to fabricate. Companies know this. And it’s exactly why many add hero images to their testimonials.

Pictures legitimize the testimonial further and in many cases, increase conversions manyfold.

In fact, When 161 Driving Academy replaced their stock hero images with pictures of real people, they increased their conversion rate by 161%.

Shopify feature high-resolution hero images to accompany their testimonials. When you see a quote comes from a customer—just like you—it’s easier to empathize and move forward with making a purchase:

If evangelical customers are happy to wax lyrical about you, why not show them in a good light, too?

iii. Quotes With a Hero Image and Call-to-Action (CTA)

You would think a quote and a hero image is enough for a prospect to buy something, right? Wrong.

As marketers, we can never think prospects know what to do; we have to take them by the hand and show them. And it’s exactly why good testimonials always need a strong call-to-action (CTA).

Following Shopify’s example, Marucci features a quote with a hero image and a CTA, inviting readers to read a case study:

If a visitor is interested, they can learn more about David Ortiz’s transformation before deciding whether Marucci is for them.

Zapier goes one step further with their testimonials. And it’s a great example of going the extra mile. Rather than feature their testimonials on a relevant page, they include them on relevant posts, namely, in the form of slide-ins:

Editor’s Note

Here’s a quick and easy way to show the right testimonials on the right pages using Sleeknote:

One way to differentiate yourself when writing testimonials is by using what Copyblogger call a reverse testimonial.

This is when a testimonial begins with the buyer’s objection, before continuing with praise and ending with an eventual overcoming of the initial skepticism.

Here’s an example from Bony to Beastly:

In this example, Dallas addresses a common concern prospects have when buying online (“Is this a scam?”) before transitioning into the transformation he underwent having taken action (or in other words, making a purchase).

Action item: If you’re using quote testimonials, ensure each has a hero image and relevant CTA that gives visitors the chance to learn more about the customer’s transformation, rather than the product.

2. Influencer Testimonials

Influencers are a lot like high school quarterbacks. They’re popular amongst their peers but almost impossible to befriend.

Getting the coveted high-five in the hallway from an influencer is impressive in its own right. But what’s really impressive—and where you ought to focus your outreach efforts—is getting press from influencers in your market.

Think about it: Everyone wants to be featured in Entrepreneur, Forbes, The Huffington Post, etc. But there’s a problem.

Everyone’s gunning for them. What’s better is getting noticed by the movers and shakers your audience are most familiar with.

Take Di Bruno Bros. for instance. They specialize in gourmet gift baskets and travel the world to find the most delicious cheeses, meats, and specialty foods out there. And their efforts pay off.

Having caught the attention of industry giants Travel + Leisure and Serious Eats (among others), Di Bruno Bros combine quotes with influencer badges on their media page:

You can’t always attract influencers, that’s a given. But you can increase your chances of getting noticed by being the best at what you do.

Action item: Reach out to authorities in your industry and ask if they would like to try your product.

3. Social Media Testimonials

Social media has changed the way we express ourselves. When we’re not Instagramming our lunch or asking for likes, we’re taking to social media to voice our dreams, fears and occasionally, frustrations with our favorite brands.

When it’s positive, everyone welcomes praise. And rightfully so. A cut above quotes, social testimonials are effective because it’s possible to click through and see the person you’re reading about is a real person, living a real life.

Casper embeds tweets and Instagram posts from customers on their site to highlight how comfortable their products are:

Fabletics encourage their customers to share images of themselves using the product on Instagram with the hashtag #MyFabletics…

…and that’s exactly what they do.

As of writing, the #MyFabletics hashtag has been used more than 37,000 times:

Action item: Invite customers to leave feedback on social channels after making a purchase. Then, embed any positive feedback on your product pages.

4. Consumer Reviews

You’re probably familiar with social proof. If not, social proof is our tendency to assume that the actions of others reflect the correct behavior for a given situation.

But not all forms of influence are alike. What’s more important is when the actions of others belong to people who are similar to us.

In one 2008 study, hotel guests were found to be more likely to reuse their towels when told the majority of the prior occupants of their particular room had participated, than those who had learned the norms for the hotel in general.

Put another way, we prefer people who think similarly to ourselves. If you resemble a previous buyer, you’re more likely to be receptive to their testimonial. It’s no surprise then, that we’re so responsive to consumer reviews.

In fact, according to research by Deloitte, 60 percent of people rate reviews as equally trustworthy as information from friends and family.

Brands like Harry’s, a men’s shaving company, use TrustPilot to boost their trustworthiness.

Consumer reviews are often the easiest of the seven types of testimonial because they’re super simple to ask for. In fact, Casper leverages a post-purchase email, asking customers to write a review:

Action item: Email customers 14-days after their purchase asking them to leave a review on an industry-relevant review site. Then, showcase the reviews on your site.

5. Case Studies

Case studies are an opportunity to really sell the reader on the transformation that a previous customer made.

Using a copywriting formula like Before-After-Bridge (BAB), you can show readers where a customer was before they made a purchase, where they are now, after making a purchase, and bridge the gap using your product or service.

Kevan Lee from Buffer summarizes the BAB formula nicely:

Steve Kamb from Nerd Fitness uses case studies as a way to generate leads for his flagship product, The NerdFitness Academy. Kamb cleverly features customer emails as a way to move their story forward, legitimizing the case study in the process:

Action Item: Invite a previous customer to tell their story having used your product, and focus on the transformation they went through having done so.

6. Video Testimonials

Video is fast becoming the number one marketing channel for business owners.

In fact, according to one report by Copypress, 51.9% of marketing professionals worldwide named video as the type of content with the best ROI.

Brands like Harry’s and Orabrush were able to go viral seemingly overnight by leveraging the power of video to market their services. As Neil Patel says, “If a picture’s worth a thousand words, then video is priceless.”

But video isn’t limited to product marketing. Ramit Sethi from I Will Teach You to Be Rich uses video to market his flagship product, Zero to Launch—but with a twist. Rather than focusing on the benefit to the viewer, Ramit differentiates himself by focusing on the transformation of previous customers.

Merging professional production values with insightful interviews and accompanying case studies, Ramit showcases his most successful students to sell his course for him. (Note the “Success Story Quick Wins” callout box above the video for skim readers):

Other business owners, like the aforementioned Orabrush, feature customer video reviews on their homepage:

Once upon a time, video testimonials were reserved for companies with 6-figure marketing budgets. But today, anyone with a smartphone can record a video anywhere, anytime, and capture their thoughts on their favorite brand.

Action item: Ask customers to record a short testimonial video on their smartphone, discussing what they enjoy most about your brand. Then, showcase them to prospects at critical stages in the buyer’s journey.

7. Documentary Series

Like most marketers, I thought I’d seen everything when it came to customer testimonials. That is, until I came across Bryan Harris.

In 2016, Bryan launched his flagship product, Get 10,000 Subscribers, but went above and beyond when interviewing previous customers: He filmed a documentary series.

With a camera crew on hand, Bryan visited three former students at their homes to document how their lives had changed after enrolling on his course.

And the results were remarkable.

Viewers loved it, prospects bought into Bryan’s product more than ever before and revenue went from $900,000 to $1.5 million in fewer than 12 months:

While it’s impossible to know how much the documentary series directly impacted Videofruit’s annual revenue (only Bryan knows that), few can deny the influential power of highlighting customer successes.

There’s something about giving prospects a glimpse into what their life could be like if they made a purchase; one that takes product marketing to a whole other level.

Filming a documentary isn’t for everyone. And it might not be for you or your business. But more business owners are opting for more professional videos to market their products moving forward. And with good reason: it works.

Action item: Ask your existing customers how their lives are different after having bought your product and feature them in a documentary highlighting their transformation.

Free Downloadable Bonus

Want More Customer Testimonial Examples?

Get access to our ever-growing library of free marketing resources (includes Facebook ad examples, swipe files for top-performing email campaigns, marketing toolkits and more).

Conclusion

Customer testimonials are more important than ever. Years ago, a brand could divert your eyes from negative press. Today, everyone with a smartphone and a social media account is a critic.

A company’s reputation is only a few keystrokes away. And with that in mind, it’s your responsibility to ensure that your reputation stays positive.

Which customer testimonial type do you use in your marketing? Leave a comment below.

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