November 3rd, 2011
Customer testimonials are powerful business tools. Research suggests time and time again that consumers trust each other more than messages tied up in pretty bows by glossy marketing materials and big budget ad campaigns. What’s more, from the business perspective, testimonials are a great way to showcase what your business has to offer while creating content for your website and social media channels that’s both easily shared and drives traffic to your site.
The easy part of testimonials is sharing them. The tricky part can be in obtaining them. The trade show, however, offers a great opportunity to do so right on the spot.
Take a moment to consider these tips for capturing your brand’s story from the mouths of customers the next time you’re on the trade show floor.
- Create multiple opportunities—Use traditional comment cards, ask trade show goers to participate in quick surveys administered through computers or tablets at your table and include a video component by arming booth staff with video cameras (don’t forget the release forms!)
- Dedicate a staff member to this one task—We all know that trade shows can be hectic. If you make it a point to capture testimonials here, don’t let it fall to the wayside. Keep it a priority by dedicating a staff member or two with recruiting participants and managing the capture.
- Offer an incentive—When asking visitors to participate, offer them an incentive for doing so. Small gifts like baseball hats, iPad® sleeves or tote bags, are great for comment cards and surveys. Reserve more expensive gifts, like a double old-fashioned glass set or a North End® jacket, for detailed video testimonials.
- Give them talking points—Testimonials are easier and faster to get if you tell customers upfront what you’re looking for in a message and why. Give them a specific product or service to comment on or ask them to share a story of when they were really impressed with your company or a customer service experience.
- Thank them for participating—Once you’ve used the testimonial, let the customer know where it can be found, along with a quick thank you. A small token of appreciation, like a padfolio or a picturesque calendar for participation, is also a nice gesture.
Customer testimonials are a great tool for building business and can also be a fun way to engage people at your trade show booth.
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