Employ the Praise
Many catalogers who use customer testimonials say this creative element boosts sales and adds a friendly touch to their brands. Below are some things to consider if you, too, want to utilize this creative element in your print catalogs.
Most catalogers report a general boost in product performance when they use testimonials, although many admit they don’t scientifically measure the impact.
“I used testimonials at Gardener’s Supply and think they can be really powerful catalog marketing tools,” says Susan Stone Russel, the former circulation manager at Gardener’s Supply catalog, and currently a manager at Intuit. “My main objective [in using them] was to establish product and/or company credibility, and to build customer confidence.”
Fred Neil, president of Prism Management in Florida, says that when he worked at Montgomery Ward, the use of consumer reviews created a lift in related products. “It drew attention to the items and humanized the shopping experience,” he says. Indeed, testimonials break down the wall of consumer paranoia, he continues. They enable consumers to read the opinions of their peers, in addition to those touted by the merchants.
Neil says he saw a strong response to testimonials among seniors, and he especially recommends using them with technical categories such as electronics and computers.
Here’s how testimonials can make the greatest impression on prospects and customers:
* Hearing about product performance or satisfaction can underscore quality.
* Communicating product or shopping ease can alleviate customers’ fears about buying technical merchandise.
* Words about your company’s great service may entice a prospect to try you.
* Hearing about another customer’s accomplishments or achievements using your products may encourage a similar sale.
* A great customer service story can humanize your company.
* A comparison between you and other companies may help if you’re in a particularly competitive environment.
* Professional testimonials (e.g. publication quotes) can create a high level of credibility.