Wednesday, March 25, 2009

To Get Testimonials, Be Who You Say You Are - Be Trustworthy

When you say it about yourself, people call you a bragger.
But when someone else says it about you, they see you as a genius.

So, how do you get people to say it about you? How do you get people to stand up and make their voice heard about how great you are? How do you get "Tesimonials"?

"Do what you do so well that they will
want to see it again and bring their friends."
Walt Disney

Believe it or not, getting testimonials have little to do with your product. They do, however, have a whole lot to do with what else you do for yor customers. You see, your customers "expect" your product to be good - to be what you say it is. But in today's marketplace, they don't expect you to do more - because so few businesses actually do.

So when you do more than they expect - you follow-up on whether they were happy, you provide extra value without being prompted, you go that extra mile just to get a smile, your customers get excited. And excitement is what will get them talking about you.

At Disney World or Disneyland, it isn't the rides that people rave about (even though the rides are quite fun) - you can go on rides at any amusement park or carnival. Instead, it's about how you feel when you are at the park - its the experience you get before, during and after you experience the Disney Experience.

Disney doesn't just build rides and entertainment you, they treat you like you are the only family that matter. From the CEO to the person who empties the trash around the park, somehow, even though you walk around with 10,000-20,000 other customers, you feel like its all about you. You feel like they built the park for you and to give your kids the greatest memories of their lives.

It's the way they serve you, the way they care about customer service, how they listen to you that makes the biggest difference. When you do more than just provide your product or service and you go that extra mile, your customer starts to believe your rhetoric about wanting to be more than just a Donut Shop, a Realtor, or a IT Support Team. They begin to see you as caring - and they begin to trust you.

With trust, comes followership. And with real followership, you get devoted clients that want you to succeed. You get lots of testimonials.

Frankly, testimonials come when you earn them - when you have Integrity. And like earning trust with friends and family, its more than just saying you are trustworthy, its about BEing trustworthy.

So if you want testimonials, become who you say you are - not in your eyes, but in the eyes of your customers. And remember, testimonials don't come from saying your good, they come when the customer walks away from the experience feeling that their life has been changed. They come when your clients believe in you and trust you enough to let you put their name next to yours.

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