You genuinely may run the best IT Solution Provider or Managed Service Provider (MSP) in the world - but when it comes to winning new business, how do your prospective clients know that? Hearing reviews from other businesses about your service can help.

Nothing helps build trust in you and your services more than client testimonials. Hearing (or seeing) what existing clients have to say about your business goes an awful long way towards helping prospects become clients for your business.

Most IT companies I know have a client testimonial page on their web-site, but the majority also seem to waste a great opportunity to really make their client testimonials stand out. They assume that simply putting up a clients logo, a quick sound-bite from their client or a link to their clients site is enough.

Do you make the most of your client testimonials for helping convert prospects into newly won business?

Here are 3 mistakes to avoid with your MSP client testimonials.

Not including a photo of your clientclient testimonitals

Let’s start off with a fact many people overlook with their client testimonials.

Just because your client testimonial is true, doesn’t mean people will believe it.

This can be a bitter pill to swallow, because you know the client testimonial is genuine - but how can you persuade the reader of the same?

Using photographs of your clients can help enormously. Have you ever heard the phrase “Truthiness?” It refers to the idea that most people claim to know intuitively whether a claim is true or not. Furthermore, client testimonials that don’t have photographs are considered much less believable than client testimonials that do! Adding a photo can give your client testimonial credibility.

But the right photo is essential. Whatever you do, don’t use stock photography - people will see straight through it.

Use actual photos of your client next to their testimonial. I use actual client photographs in testimonials on my own web-site, and new clients have commented on how it helped them choose to work with me.

So go grab some snaps of your clients to use next to their testimonials, and see the “truthiness” of your client testimonials rise.

Failing to be specific with the testimonial

We often feel uncomfortable asking clients for testimonials. After all, we’re effectively asking the client to client testimonials imagesay good things about us - and few of us are overly comfortable with receiving praise.

So it’s often the case that when we do pluck up the courage to ask for a testimonial, the client will ask us “What should I say?”.

It’s at this stage that need to have a story in mind. If your client testimonial simply says “Joe’s MSP are really good guys”, well, that’s nice - but it isn’t very compelling is it?

Far better that you ask your client to specify exactly the benefits they gained from working with you. “Joe’s MSP keeps our network running so we don’t have to spend time doing so” is better, but for the best testimonials, consider trying to weave a short story.

“We experienced a break-in resulting in the theft of all our computers. Joe’s MSP was on-site the same day to help furnish us with new computers, and to help restore all our business critical data from the backups they maintained. Without Joe’s MSP, we would have been sunk” is a compelling story that people will relate to and understand.

Ideally, you should build such client testimonial stories for all aspects of your service that you want to promote. Infrastructure Management, Vendor Management, Backup and Disaster Recovery, On-Site Support, Remote Support - build up testimonials that accentuate the positives of each of these services to your clients.

Not describing what your clients do

Many of the client testimonials I see list the client by name, and company name - sometimes adding a job title. This tells you little or nothing about who the client really is, and what they do.

Instead of “Joe Bloggs, XYZ Company” - try listing the testimonial as “Joe Bloggs is the owner of XYZ Company, who provide plumbing widgets to companies throughout the North-West”.

Accurately describing what your clients do allows for the possibility that someone viewing the testimonial associates with it. In our example, can you imaging if a another company that provides widgets viewed the testimonial? They’d be likely to read it and say “That sounds a lot like us!” - encouraging them to favor working with you above a competitor who, in their mind at least, perhaps doesn’t have the experience of working in their sector that your MSP business does.

Conclusion

Client testimonials are a huge opportunity to showcase how you can help others, provided you maximize the message they put across.

By adding a clients photograph to increase trust, being specific in the testimonial to describe how you helped the client, and describing what the client does to encourage like-minded people to associate themselves with the work you’ve done, you’ll raise your client testimonials above the lackluster testimonials of your competitors.

About the Author

As the former owner of an award winning IT Managed Service Provider, Richard Tubb works with MSPs to help them increase sales, take on employees and build up relationships with key industry contacts. You don't have to do it alone any more - contact Richard and have a chat about your needs and how he can help you.

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