January 2019: With the growth in social media and other online communities as well as independent review sites, consumers are seeking assistance online with purchasing decisions. A digital check is easier and quicker than most off-line alternatives. The trend of conducting extensive, yet accessible, research before making a purchase is common amongst most digital natives. Against this backdrop your customer testimonials show the value that your customer base sees in your products and service. There is simply no better way to communicate who you are than through a positive customer story, which features genuine praise and feedback. Research shows that this type of content often outperforms other more obvious marketing concepts.
With 51.9% of marketing professionals worldwide naming video as the type of content with the best return on investment, it makes sense to create video testimonials. We also know that video is proven to increase conversions and help search engine optimisation.
Part of the power of a video testimonial is that the viewer sees the subject deliver the testimonial – this direct connection helps to create authenticity for the audience. If the person is in the public eye and a respected figure, this can add to the impact of the endorsement.
Authentic and Genuine
It is important to let your customers give their testimonial in their own words, using natural language rather than scripted marketing speak. Today’s consumers have been exposed to hours of video and they are very adept at spotting fakes, so be prepared to video for as long as it takes.
Similarly, too much direction will not work with customer testimonials. Telling your customer when to smile will be seen as someone being forced. The key here is to be very light-handed in your approach and let the customer’s own personality shine through.
Most customers will not be word-perfect presenters and for many this might be their first time being filmed. Accept and understand this by being as supportive as possible and make them comfortable. Show them the footage and ask if they are ok – and if they are not – let them repeat it as many times as needed.
There is a great deal of research which is causing many commentators to lament our society’s decreasing attention span and yet some very popular websites are having great success with long-form content.
For testimonials, rather than just blindly following the data, we need to question just how long does it take for someone to provide a recommendation? There will be some variation in length according to personality types but in normal (real life) conversations most testimonials are short.
Follow your instincts when editing your customer testimonials – there are plenty of non-verbal cues from the speaker to help good editors identify the true beginning and end of a recommendation.
It is important to use your video testimonials proactively – do not just bury them deep in your website. Your customer will be proud you used them and will want them to be effective, having agreed to the process in the first place. Load them directly to video channels, link to them through your social media networks and share them where appropriate.
SRF has produced video testimonials for a wide variety of clients, capturing the views of commercial property tenants, rail passengers, airport users, car park customers and we can help you produce and use this engaging content as part of your corporate story.