Every now and then I like to cook a roast chicken dinner on Sundays.
It’s something I did with my family as a child for many years and I still love. To prepare for dinner at 6pm I need to start around 3pm. It’s a process. First the oven goes on to heat up to 180℃ and the chicken comes out of the fridge. I use a particular brand of chicken that I have used time and time again. I then dry the skin of the chicken and get rid of all the excess moisture using a paper towel. Then it’s time to fill the chook. I start with some freshly cracked pepper, then a whole lemon that I’ve first squashed by rolling on the bench and poked around with holes. After that comes about 5 cloves of garlic and 2 sprigs of thyme. Then comes the second lemon. Then I lay the chook on its back and slide two pieces of butter up under the skin to sit directly over the breast. This creates a more juicy succulent meat. Then its time to tuck the legs into some slits I cut into the skin near the opening so the legs now sit cross legged. Finally I sprinkle some salt over the skin of the chook and it is ready to go into the oven by 4pm. Cooking the perfect roast chicken is so much more than just throwing it into the oven. It’s all about the preparation you do before.
Testimonials are important because they relieve some pressure on your prospects and also help transfer the enthusiasm of others about you, your product or service and your business to others. We know this social proof is important. It's obvious. But how can you use testimonials for a brand new product or service before it's launched?
We're going to cover three ways you can do this:
1) Using testimonials for other existing products and previous versions
2) Getting testimonials at your live workshops
3) Using personal testimonials from work colleagues, former employers and customers
No product yet, no problem
Let’s say you are launching a new product. How can you collect testimonials for something that hasn’t been launched yet? There are a few simple ways. If you are writing a book or creating a course send a chapter or a module to someone to read and review. As you proceed to a final product collect additional testimonials for other parts of your product. Then when you launch you will have testimonials that are multi-layered and covering specific parts of your product. But what if you don’t have a product or service that can be separated like this? Maybe it’s a physical product.
If you have a physical product that you are launching then you can collect a testimonial from someone using another of your products. This will help people build some trust with your business and ability to solve problems. Imagine you were choosing between two brand new products and one had testimonials from other products the business sells and one had no testimonials at all. The site with testimonials is going to appear more trustworthy and legitimate isn’t it? Back to the launching of a new service or course that involves a personal transformation we can also find testimonials from live workshops.
When you are training people face to face or at a live workshop there is always some extra energy. People get to experience you more directly and it is the perfect time to collect testimonials. This can be tricky to organise during a live event because you are focused on the presentation and the training. But taking time to collect testimonials is definitely worth the extra effort. So find someone to do it for you if you will struggle to find the time to do it yourself. It is especially relevant to collect testimonials if you are presenting something that is directly related to the product or service you are preparing to pre-sell. Your workshop is likely a part of your pre-sell anyway. But what if you haven’t done any workshops or if this is not relevant to your product or service? This is where you can use the personal testimonial.
We all have prepared a resume or at least asked for a reference from someone in the past haven’t we? Why not utilise your list of referees and collect personal referees as video testimonials? These can have multiple uses and can be included with your pre-sell material because they represent powerful social proof. When someone gives a personal testimonial on video they are staking their reputation in support you. If they are not 100% committed to supporting you and your work it will shine through in their body language even if they say all the right words. Hearing from someone else about you helps create a more personal connection. You are a real human with personality and not another nameless sales page with just a bunch of sales copy.
Before pre-sell get your testimonials
We’ve talked about before and during your pre-sell of the importance of testimonials. And we’ve covered three ways you can do this. Testimonials for your other products or services, testimonials from your live events and the personal testimonial. They can all be useful in creating more social evidence and trust in your brand and help create momentum for your new launch. And try to get video testimonials if you can. These are the most flexible of all since you can convert them to text, just audio or the full video. Now back to my roast dinner.
After about 90 minutes in the oven the chicken is ready to come out. If I have a new oven I will actually check the temperature inside the leg of the chicken as well. The skin should look nice and crispy from being dried prior to cooking and the effect of the salt. Releasing the legs you then remove the lemons, garlic and thyme and place the emptied chook on a tray to sit. Then I add a couple of fresh sprigs of thyme, squeeze out the juice of the lemons and stir this into a lovely natural gravy with nothing else required. Now it’s time to enjoy your roast dinner, thanks to all the steps you have followed before.
Now it’s time for you to start getting your testimonials before you sit down to launch your new product. Not having is is like forgetting to stuff the chicken with the lemons, and garlic and a bit of thyme. The meat of the chicken will be cooked but not nearly as yummy and with no gravy.