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How To Request A Testimonial For Your Services

Michelle Dale - Wednesday, May 07, 2014

One of the primary influencers as to whether a client will hire you is the feedback you've received from other clients. Last week in the e-Travel weekly show I mentioned that Freshbooks had introduced a new way to ask for client feedback after they pay their invoices through the system, but what if you don't use Freshbooks or you're looking for something a bit more comprehensive?

It's really important to show satisfied clients online, not just social proof through places like Twitter and Facebook, but also more comprehensive feedback on place such as LinkedIn or through a testimonials page on your main website.

I wrote a post a while back about how to handle potential clients that want to request a CV or resume from you, and this applies also to people who ask for 'references' which is not in my opinion an appropriate question to pose to someone who is an independent business owner and not a potential employee.

So your best bet to satisfy people's need to know about other people's experiences of working with you is to get detailed testimonials.

Helping The Client

If you want a certain type of testimonial it's important to make it obvious to the client, asking for feedback and hoping for the best isn't enough, often people don't know where to start when they write a testimonial, especially if they're not used to providing them, and really this is where you should give them some guidance so that they can cover what's most important in their feedback.

The Template

I've been using this email for years, and although it has been adjusted over the years to fit in with what I find to be an optimal testimonial request it's always remained a solid staple in my intranet and pre-defined email templates to customise to different clients when requesting feedback.

You're free to use this template and adjust it to your own clients and business or whoever you'd like to get feedback from. It's effective and you're always able to get quite a comprehensive response that you can then either breakdown into pieces or publish on your website as it is.

If you'd prefer to receive your testimonial on a place like LinkedIn, you could submit a recommendation request instead of sending just a standard email.

Hi [name],

As a client of Virtual Miss Friday, your feedback is very valuable to us and as you're probably well-aware, satisfied clients are vital to the success of any business.

We would like to invite you to take a moment to provide some feedback on our services, in the form of a testimonial, and if you have the time, perhaps even include what you liked most about us. All feedback is warmly welcomed.

To help with this request, please consider answering any or all of the following questions:

• What would you say is unique about me, my services or my way of doing business?
• In what way or ways did I make it easy for you to do business with me?
• Would you recommend me to others, and if so, why?
• Should the opportunity arise, would you use my services again?

If you have any questions about this request, please don't hesitate to contact us.

This is of course completely voluntary, and if you do intend to provide a testimonial, please do it at your own convenience. I look forward to receiving your comments.

Here are some example of other client testimonials.

Thanks so much in advance.

Good testimonial requests

Remind them why

At the start I like to add a reminder of why feedback is so important. This applies to any business and the client will be able to apply this point to their own business as well, which will make it more likely they will respond quickly.

Ask for some specifics

Make it 'super easy' for them to put something together. Include direct questions like, "Would you recommend me to others, and if so, why?"

Don't Pressure

Remember testimonials should be voluntary and usually if the client is happy, there's no need to pressure them into providing one, they gladly provide it. If you want to ask if it's okay first before sending the formal email, then you can do that too.

Provide Examples

In the end you'll see I've offered a link to my own client testimonials so people can take a look at examples. This also works well if you're requesting feedback on products or services.

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Hi I'm Michelle, an entrepreneur specialising in virtual assistance, a digital and real world nomad, and a down-to-earth mother of three.

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