27 Mar 2014

Why pitch, when customers can do it so much better for you?

When it comes to marketing, don’t underestimate the power of the testimonial, says MRA Marketing's Head of Creative, Kate Woodford.

There’s nothing quite like coming highly recommended. Think about it. You understand why your product or service is amazing. You know it inside and out. You’ve spent years ploughing good time, money and effort into it. To you, it is perfection.

But to someone who has never seen or heard of your product or service, all of the above is irrelevant. No matter how big or important a brand you think you are, customers won’t simply take your word for it. And why should they?

As marketing agencies we all talk the talk, and MRA is no exception, but when it comes down to it, do we walk the walk as well? That’s what potential customers really want to know.

Everything may be going swimmingly, the deal is so close you can feel it, but the prospect just wants that last reassurance that they are making the right decision. That’s when you whip out your trump card – the happy customer who’s already been there and done it and lived to tell the tale.

Needing reassurance that others have already bought into a product or service is a phenomenon well known to retailers. They call it ‘social proofing’. Their research into why and how shoppers buy has shown that customers are reluctant to purchase from an untouched display. Instead shelves with gaps are much more inviting because they tell us that others have bought into the deal first.

In marketing, those ‘gaps’ are testimonials, happy quotes from happy customers. If you’re a successful business then you should have plenty of them to hand. If you don’t, make sure you get them and fast. Your satisfied customers will love to be asked and it will bode well for future business with them too. Be generous with your praises. Share them out willingly in your press releases, ads, brochures and websites, as well as on social media. After all, a good word from a happy customer is worth more than even the smartest sales pitch.

Agree? Disagree? Want help with your marketing? Comment below, follow us on LinkedIn tweet @MRAMarketing or email social@mra-marketing.com.

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