Fired Up and Focused Bootcamp: Day 21

The Original Conversion Copywriter, Joanna Wiebe
Shows You How to Use Testimonials So People Don’t Think You’re Full of Sh*t

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Hey there, Joanna here from Copy Hackers. Today we’re talking about social proof and what we really mean when we’re talking about that is relying on people other than yourself to make a point to your visitors or to prove a point your regular copy is trying to make.

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Making a message great or turning a regular message into a higher converted message, usually comes down to two really basic points which you have to address when you’re creating your page and in this case when you’re optimizing a page. Those two points are “so what?” and “prove it!” So What is all about the benefits, the benefits of what you’re trying to say or what you’ve created for somebody.

If you write something like the leading Social Media dashboard to manage and measure your social networks you’re uber motivated, 1% of visitors are going to look at that message and go cool. Then there’s this other huge vast world of visitors and I’m not talking about the full 99% necessarily, but that other group of people which we all through converting was the 20-35% of your visitors who are pretty good prospects for you. Who are just look you lose and who might at some point now or near future, or even later future convert.

Those people look at a message like that and say, “so what?” That’s the first question that you have to answer from there they may also then say, “Okay, well prove it.” The answer to “So what?” question you’d have to explain what people get when they better manage and measure their social networks. You have to tell them what the outcome is about, what’s good about that, they may know it, they probably know it but you have to put that on the page for them. Of course, offends your way to do so what if you’re really very fancy today is to answer the question to what end? “So what” or “to what end”, both of those can get to your messages closer to answering. They key questions that people will have when they look at every message that you’ve written on your page.

Most of the messages you put on the page will be answered in your words or with your copy writing hand, they will answer that “so what?” question. The “Prove it!” side is the part that we’re really focusing on today and that is saying, “Okay, well we’ve told them what the features are, what the benefits are, what they’re going to get out of it?” Now, we have to prove that we’re not full of crap, that we’re not just like making this up and expecting them to believe it. Of course that is where social proof comes in.

In the line, the leading social media dashboard to manage and measure your social networks, you’d have at least three things that you’d have to prove on that same page ideally in close proximity to that line that you’re supporting. Those three things are prove that you’re the leader in social media dashboards. You can’t just say that, prove it. Prove that I can manage my social networks and prove that I can measure my social networks. Now and then if there are of course those “so what?” outcomes that you also message there, you may have to end up proving some of those “so what’s?”

How can you prove those things? What do you have at your fingertips to you as here to prove those. Of course, there’s a pretty obvious one’s, right? You can prove that you’re good at managing social networks by showing screenshots where those social networks are managed clearly. You can prove the same form of measuring too. You can show how people will measure in a dashboard, whatever might be in your tool. You can do a video, a video demo, explain our video, if you’re saying you’re the leader, how do we prove that? We show how many users you already have, we show the influential people who are already using your solution. We take testimonials from very influential people who know that you are the leader in this space.

Then of course, we’d also want to flash that out potentially with testimonials from your more regular users with media user reviews, with great tweets about you, and of course with video testimonials. We tend to think I need social proof because we’ve heard a social proof and we like the idea of testimonials or something there, putting logos on our site, or a theme comes with a space for logos so we think we should put logos in there. We often just think I need social proof, I’ll get some social proof. Or I need social proof but I don’t have it so I guess I don’t need it. The truth is that social proof has to proves something. It’s proving something and if you don’t have it then it’s very hard to prove a point you’re trying to make.

If you do have testimonials and tweets and great other things that you can use as social proof, those also have to prove a point and has to be something bigger today. For today’s standards where there are a lot of testimonials on different pages and they’re kind of like white noise all of the time. To really help people and persuade them to use your solution they have to do something more, they have to prove a message that you’re trying to communicate. They can’t just be, “Oh I love this solution, it was so awesome.” It can’t be that they have to, you have to take a message you’re trying to prove and prove it with a testimonial. We’re asking for better content in our testimonials.

Here are four things that I want you to please take away from this lesson today. Number one, you do not need a lot of testimonials, it’s not about quantity. Number two, you do need to ask for testimonials. Some will come to you naturally, hallelujah. Other ones you really have to go and ask for. Number three, you will need some detailed ones, they can’t all be three length. Number four, a testimonial is only morely useful if it’s just on the page as proof that people are talking about your solution. Think how much more useful when people read them, so you need people to read them.We tend to worry a lot about having a lot of testimonials. Although like a great quantity of testimonials can create the solution of you being wildly popular, can support the fact that you are wildly popular. Then can then in turn persuade people to choose you.

The best approach when you’re trying to use the sort of social proof is simply this, make sure you have one testimonial that proves each of your top messages. Really goes back to you knowing what you’re trying to communicate, what the key value points for your product are and then when you have those in mind, assigning a testimonial that supports each one of those.

The question is, What are you trying to prove with your social proof?

That’s really the question – and so often we just think we’re trying to prove that some people are using it but there’s so much more that your testimonial can be doing. What message are you trying to prove? You can’t just say something and not have social proof for it, or some sort of associated proof. If you have three tops messages you need three corresponding testimonials. If on your plans and pricing page you’re trying to make a point about being extremely affordable, then it would make a lot of sense for you to support that message with a testimonial. That goes like, “This was way more affordable than any of the other solutions I checked out. You totally saved my budget.”

The next one is to ask for testimonials and this is the hardest thing I think for a lot of people until they start doing it. Then you’re like, “Oh okay that was actually really easy.” It really only takes once communication or two with 10 different people in order to have suddenly 10 new testimonials you can use. Now you need to make a collecting testimonials, just simply part of your process at work. There are certain groups of people, two in particular were going talk with today that you can easily ask for testimonials that you can then go publish right away on your site. The two groups of people that I believe you should ask for a testimonial from are user who write to you to say, “Wow,” but whom you haven’t necessarily established a relationship with.

Then users with whom you have established a really good relationship and this usually comes about by writing back and forth, by connecting at conferences, or by tweeting with each other. With the first group, you need to make it a process. Part of your process, when your applying to a really nice email that someone sends you to say something equally nice back, to be appreciative, and then at the end of that email to ask if you can use their kind words as a testimonial on your site. Then in that email you can actually quote on what you’d like to say and how you’d like it to be presented and that’s it. “I have had a 100% success rate with this, so I strongly recommend that you go for it.”

Now, with the second group you can do a lot more. This is the group of people from whom you’re likely to get the elements that make for an extremely persuasive testimonial. The kind that gets looked at and read their full name, their location, the company that they work for, their photo, and then an even more detailed testimonial than you would get from someone whom you’re not actively engaged. This are the type of testimonial that you can direct, you can help create it. That leads us into the best way to write a testimonial. Short testimonials are great especially on home pages, but long testimonials can be really valuable for people who are deeper in your funnel or people who are on your email list already.

People who are starting to engage with you, who aren’t brand new to you and are more willing to read more about you as their considering using you. Long testimonials can tell stories and that’s great. Now, what type of story are we talking about, we don’t want some endlessly long testimonial. If we’re going to have a long testimonial it has to be really valuable and worth the person’s time. This is the formula I have used, tons of copyrighter’s use and promote, forgetting a high value testimonial or really persuasive testimonial. It goes like this, so it answers what they were going through, or what they were struggling with before they chose you, how they stumbled on you, and the outstanding outcomes at least one of using your solution.

If you decide to ask somebody that you know pretty well for a testimonial and you should go the extra mile and ask for what you really want. Ask them to write out what was going on before they found you, how they found you, and what’s change for them since they started using your solution. This is the most powerful testimonial that you can have, you should strive to collect at least three of this testimonials. You’ll quickly find that there are a variety of places where you can use them. Now, the fourth and final point here is that you need to keep your testimonials read. How do you get your testimonials read? How do they actually stand a chance of proving something more than random Jim Jones from Kentucky used your product?

This is how, really simple, use summary headers. A summary header is a little line of copy above your testimonial that seems to summarize what’s within the testimonial, it really lures people in to reading the testimonial. Now, that summary header doesn’t have to summarize what’s within. It probably isn’t going to do a very good job but that’s all it does. Rather what it should do and what you should think about when you’re writing that summary header and that is the line of copy that you write is think of the top message that your testimonial is intended to communicate. Then what is that message you were trying to communicate, take that and put it as your summary header.

Peek to what’s within but without actually, necessarily giving away everything that’s within. Again, that’s why we don’t want to summarize, we want to hit on a point that’s important to communicate and then do it in such a way that people want to read the copy that follows.

Reviews and nice tweets can go a long way toward getting people to feel good about your solution and to create the sense that people are using it confidently, happily and then communicating with you about that. It’s your going to establish company, all that great stuff that can come from having again nice reviews and tweet. Never underestimate the power of a good testimonial, to take a message that you’re trying to communicate to your visitors. Actually prove it, which is something that your copy alone cannot do.

You need testimonials to prove your point, so with that in mind let’s take a look at today’s homework.

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