You know the kind of testimony you read – either as a consumer or as the recipient – that just makes you go YES! That’s exactly what I wanted to hear! (the power of social proof!)
This can be the norm for your business if you help your clients out. YES, the way in which you ask for testimonies absolutely shapes the type of testimony you receive.
We want testimonies that do a few things:
WE have to ask the RIGHT questions to get all of this.
I am the queen of recieving long-winded testimonies – which are great for ME, but not for someone reading my sales page and wanting to get the bullet point takeaways from my services.
I find it interesting that a lot of coaches I work with and speak to find it awkward or strange to ask for feedback and testimonies from their clients. OR only use screenshots as testimonies and never get a formal testimony! WHAAAATTT ARE YOU DOING?!
There is so much more praise left on the table. And possibly great marketing material.
Today we’re going to go over different types of testimonies that you might receive in the online health and fitness space, how to use them; but more importantly, how to help clients give you the highest quality testimony that you are looking for from a marketing standpoint.
Low pressure marketing
Confidence for YOU & PROSPECT
When you have testimonies from clients, backing up your coaching approach, that gives you confidence in marketing your services.
It can also provide confidence in prospects to invest their money with you.
Your motive vs a client’s motive is not the same. The prospect knows that.
Unless a current or past client is in an affiliate program of some kind, and they’re getting a kickback, most social proof is not from someone who is trying to sell you something.
It’s from someone sharing their genuine experience, and likely some kind of transformation that they had in working with you.
There are no strings attached for this person.
And that’s why social proof is so vital for a brand.
Because it can do a fair amount of the selling for you. Or at least affirm the rest of your marketing.
Other people have trusted your process and had success with it. And now potential prospects know that. Not because YOU told them, but because your clients did.
GAIN CREDIBILITY through “social PROOF” – YOU HAVE BACKING NOW.
You’ve gained credibility because people say that what you do works. And they’re using their own words to do that.
This is a massive reason people and brands will BETA test before launching something. Not only to improve the service or offer but to GET FEEDBACK that backs their marketing from consumers.
Let’s look at different types of social proof that you might receive as an online health and fitness professional.
Screenshots, Written testimonies, photos/video
Especially in the digital era, this can come in the medium of screenshots from a training app and successes that the client has had, or from a communication app like Voxer or slack.
Get legal approval – form, asking, make it anonymous, put it in your terms when they join.
It can be built into your terms that they agree to when signing a contract, or joining your program. And there are also more specific client testimony release contracts, and forms that can be implemented into your business.
Back to the screenshots. Just because something is a screenshot does not mean that it’s a “low quality” testimony.
SUPER POWER OF SCREENSHOTS = ORGANIC in real time of the process
If you can get an organic screenshot of someone sharing their successes, in their own words and context, that’s money in the world of testimonies. Doesn’t get more authentic than that.
Not to put words in the clients mouth. But to add clarity or alignment with your brand messaging.
You’re essentially drawing out the main punch line or point or theme of the testimony in the screenshot.
I really like this approach for sales pages or sharing on social media because it allows a prospect to see the verbiage that one of your clients would use and then you draw that parallel to your method or your messaging.
Transformations – this is a VISUAL of the starting point and *ending* point. Remember what I said we want from high value social proof! – The beginning AND the end.
Video and photo can absolutely do that. I used to be against this form of testimony but I have shifted to being very for it IF CONTEXT is provided. THEN, I think these become VERY high value.
GETTING RAVING WRITTEN SOCIAL PROOF
Now, let’s get into how to get raving testimonies when you are formally asking for a review.
And this is what I would suggest to you if you are a coach or practitioner in the online health and fitness space.
First, you need to think about what your marketing message is, and what the tangible, measurable, or emotional and more subjective results are that you expect your clients to get from working with you.
Different questions are going to lead someone to answer based on these different types of results that they could have.
The person reading these testimonies is likely going to be someone debating working with you or not. They’re at the BEGINNING of their client journey.
A lot of testimonies focus on the END result. Which is great, but many people in the beginning of their client journey can’t even comprehend the results for themselves yet.
That end result is not meeting a potential client where they’re at today.
So if we can take our paying clients back to when they started with us, and then paint that full picture of the transformation they’ve had, that’s ideal.
That’s a high-quality testimony.
And that is a testimony that is going to be a lot more valuable to a prospect.
How you do that is simply by asking a question along the lines of:
These are money questions because they lead a client to answer with verbiage such as “before “x” I was ____” “When I signed up, I had been ____” etc. It takes the client and the reader back to the beginning. Point A, before reaching point B.
It’s still going to be THEIR authentic answer, but it is framed in a way that YOU can best use. It should be a win-win-win for all parties. You, the client and the prospective client.
Now we will go into the results. You need to know your result.
Regardless of tangible or emotional results, we want specificity across-the-board.
If applicable, you want to ask what their biggest, tangible or measurable takeaway was.
Give examples when you ask this.
Have you hit a PR without pain? Did you drop a certain amount of body fat? Did you hit a certain time or duration, some kind of performance school with running?
Emotional takeaway / journey:
If applicable, you’ll ask what they’re feeling or experiencing now compared to when they started?
Where have they gained freedom, joy, neutrality?
The goal with both of these, whether it’s a tangible, or an emotional testimony result, is to help paint a picture for a prospect that will be viewing this testimony.
Hearing other people’s journeys, beit measurable or subjective, can help a prospect put themselves in that person’s shoes.
They can see it for themselves.
That’s what reviews do. That’s what quality social proof does.
It says “I did it and you can do it too.” In the simplest sense.
If you tend to get no testimonies at all, or very long-winded and wordy testimonies, I encourage you to ask these specific questions whether that goes out in an email, or you create some kind of Google sheet or type form.
That’s up to you.
But don’t be coy about asking for testimonies.
Go get some high quality, raving testimonies, and make the most of them within your marketing. I’ll catch you in the next one.
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I'm an adventurous introvert from Vancouver, Washington who lives on sleep + "me time." I'm a lover of lifting weights, dinosaurs, real talk and traveling with my husband. I am here to help you move better, lift more, bust the myths of the fitness industry, and inspire you to love the process.
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