One of the most effective tools to use on your firm’s website, blog, email campaigns, newsletters, social media profiles, and more is that of the client testimonial. Featuring them widely across many different platforms can help you create a more diversified, client-centric marketing scheme.
But, how can attorneys solicit testimonials from clients? What are the dos and don’ts of soliciting client testimonials? And, once you have them, how should these testimonies be used?
In short, soliciting testimonials from clients should be something attorneys always do respectfully, honestly, and ultimately with the clients’ convenience in mind. In reality, soliciting the testimonial is the easy part; the hard part – ensuring your clients’ satisfaction – has hopefully already been accomplished by your firm.
Even still, obtaining and using client testimonials can be a daunting process for attorneys, so here we’ll share our 5-4-3-2-1 formula for more effectively using client testimonials in your digital marketing plan.
5 Reasons Why Client Testimonials Are Effective
1. They Boost Trust
First and foremost, client testimonials aren’t from the attorneys – they’re directly from other clients. This means, unlike other forms of marketing that lawyers can utilize, potential clients can get a first-hand look at what it’s really like to work with this legal professional. This, in turn, can help boost trust to heights that attorneys’ marketing just can’t quite reach in the same ways.
2. They Demonstrate Relatability
Who better to take advice from than someone who’s “been there, done that” and succeeded? That’s precisely the sort of relationship that potential clients can relate to when it comes to client testimonials.
3. They Tap into Social Conformity
There’s no denying that marketing’s beating heart thrives on the concept of social conformity – one that strives for a little bit of healthy peer pressure. Client testimonials can subconsciously rely on these forms of peer pressure (hopefully the positive kind) that can really impact viewers and push them to choose an attorney simply because other people are, and it’s working for them.
4. They Can Reach People at a Personal Level
An attorney can spout facts, figures, statistics, and case results in potential clients’ faces all day long, but reaching people at a personal level can be much more meaningful. And, client testimonials can do just that – when used well, they can share others’ stories (and those stories’ legal outcomes) that can reach people at a personal level. If the right testimonial lands in the hands of the right viewer, there’s no telling what kind of impact it may have.
5. They Convey Your Professional Work Through Others’ Stories
Most importantly for your firm, client testimonials essentially advertise for you without you needing to do much. They can be pretty powerful digital marketers. Why not consider tapping into them?
4 Types of Clients to Solicit Testimonials From
1. The Talker
We all have those clients who love to talk. And, what’s not to love? Particularly when looking to find great client candidates for testimonials, the more talking the better. Of course, too much is never good, but you can always get the full testimonial and carve it down later to better fit your spacing and marketing parameters.
2. The Fan
Ever work with a great client who simply loves you, your practice, or maybe even your entire firm? Believe it or not, there are many law firm fans out there; if you find yourself lucky enough to have some, take full advantage of their enthusiasm and feature them in your testimonials.
Not only will they grow in their adoration of your work, but they’ll likely be forever flattered and continue to sing your praises.
3. The Skeptic
If you’ve ever worked with skeptical clients, you’ll know that often they’re some of the more challenging cases to work through. Not necessarily because of the cases themselves, but simply because you’re feeling the resistance from your own client.
Unfortunately, skeptical clients are just a part of the game all attorneys play, so why not attack these fears head-on by featuring one or two testimonials from once-skeptical clients? For some potential clients, knowing that: a) feeling skepticism is normal and acceptable, and b) they aren’t the only clients who feel nervous working alongside attorneys could be the thing that finally pushes them to take the plunge and reach out to you.
4. The Underdog
Throughout their careers, most attorneys have a truly unbelievable case or client situation at some point or another. Whether it’s a truly unjust legal case or one where the odds were severely against the client, but justice prevailed anyway, featuring one or two victorious underdog testimonials could be a great way of showcasing your finest work.
Now, here it’s important to proceed with caution: While everyone loves a sensational story, the point of client testimonials is firstly to be more relatable to potential clients. For this reason, featuring one or two underdog cases amongst many standard case testimonials is perfectly fine, but exclusively featuring the most uncommon cases can be deceptive and lead to unrealistic client expectations. Be sure to strike a healthy balance here.
3 Methods for Soliciting Client Testimonials
1. Ask for Them in Writing
If you decide to solicit client testimonials via old-fashioned writing, there’s a lot of versatility there. For example, you can use them as quotations on your homepage along with the client’s headshot, you can include them in your email campaigns, and you can even create an entire subpage on your website for your client testimonials (provided you have enough testimonial to use). Soliciting them via email or even in your office means that you can always use them on any medium that you desire.
2. Ask Satisfied Clients to Make Video Testimonials
Video testimonials can be powerful stuff, as they quickly convey the story (and emotion) of a client’s testimonial in one of the most straightforward and easy-to-use mediums. Not only can a lot be conveyed through little time and resources, but there’s much evidence suggesting that videos are better received by potential clientele than nearly any other marketing medium.
3. Ask for Testimonials to Be Posted Directly onto Social Media
Obviously, your attorneys may want to proofread them first to filter out any errors and approve the content, but having your happy clients post directly onto your firm’s social media pages definitely has its advantages.
Firstly, social media is an excellent medium by which to market your brand, and you may even garner additional outreach simply by the friends-of-friends traffic that’s generated by posting testimonials online.
Secondly, potential clients appreciate when they can relate to other clients’ testimonials. If they also happen to see these positive testimonials on social media channels – on which potential clients are usually most comfortable – then that could be even more advantageous for your firm’s marketing strategy.
Lastly, no matter how your website or email campaigns change, your social media pages can function as a time capsule that forever display your client testimonials (if you want them to, of course). Since social media is only growing in importance – and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future – positive client feedback will be readily received on social media.
2 Things to Avoid When Soliciting Testimonials
1. Avoid Putting Too Much Pressure on the Client
Pressure could come in the form of asking at the last minute – thereby disrespecting your clients’ time – expecting too much, demanding a quick turnaround, micro-managing the process, pigeonholing clients into giving prescribed and inauthentic answers, and much more. Instead, try to absolutely avoid putting too much pressure on the client when soliciting testimonials. After all, they’re doing you quite the favor, so you don’t want to have misplaced expectations or demands.
2. Avoid Scripting Your Testimonials
As much as you may want to direct your clients to create your dream testimonial, no one appreciates feeling like he or she is being spoon-fed opinions. Do as little as possible in way of telling your clients what to say, except perhaps when providing them with general guidance or a testimonial theme. The more organic the testimonial, the better it will both sound and come across.
If, at the end, you aren’t very pleased with the testimonial, simply solicit another one from another client!
1 Aspect of Client Testimonials to Always Keep in Mind
Generally speaking, client testimonials are a great way to diversify your online marketing scheme and meet more potential clients at their level as they seek out legal services. Client testimonials should be varied in format, style, testimonial content, and in other ways. Most importantly, they should serve as only one part of your firm’s larger online marketing plan, and they should never mislead clients or misrepresent cases or services in any way.
Ready to Use Client Testimonials More Effectively?
Are you looking to improve your website and make the most of positive feedback from happy clients? Consider including tailored client testimonials on your website and other digital platforms as a resource for potential clients to use when seeking out your services. Then, contact us.
At Black Fin, we have been assisting our clients with their web design, SEO, content, and social media marketing needs for many years. We know exactly how to utilize key aspects of your legal practice – such as client testimonials – to enhance your online marketing so that you can start experiencing better search results.
If you’d like to find out more about how we can help take your firm’s website to the next level, contact us today.