Why They Work and How to Use Them
Someone’s good word can be incredibly powerful. As a consumer yourself, wouldn’t you rather purchase a product that has been recommended to you by a friend even if it is unfamiliar to you? Given a selection of similar products, wouldn’t you rather try one that has had some glowing reviews even if you’ve never heard of them before? Such is the power of testimonials when used in promoting affiliate sites.
These days, testimonials are a common strategy for building credibility and generating buzz about a product or a company. The world’s largest corporations spend billions of dollars in harnessing the power of a good word alone. In affiliate marketing, testimonials are regularly utilized to promote an affiliate’s site, attract new customers and recruits and compete directly with another known brand.
Why affiliate marketers use testimonials
The role of testimonials in promoting an affiliate marketing site is to try to influence consumers’ buying decisions and behavior. Carefully chosen testimonials can be very effective in convincing prospects to try the affiliate product, service or membership. It has such power that many affiliate marketing sites regularly publish testimonials from satisfied customers on their home pages for visitors to view.
Many of the affiliate marketing programs in the industry today are fairly new while others have been operating quietly under the radar. Their relative anonymity can work against them, particularly since the affiliate marketing field tends to be very competitive.
To stand out, affiliate marketing programs try to increase their credibility factor by inviting famous personalities to speak for them through testimonials. While this can be very effective particularly if the celebrity has a large fan base, it can also be quite expensive. Not every affiliate marketer can afford to pay a celebrity just to place their name on his site.
To compete, affiliate marketers turn to their own customers and members, specifically people who have had sufficient experience in the program and those who have experienced success. A fully satisfied customer’s testimonial, if it’s well-written and based on a true experience and event, can be as convincing and effective as that of any celebrity.
Using the power of testimonials for promoting an affiliate’s site
Building your credibility can be tricky, particularly since the affiliate marketing industry continues to evolve. However, if careful strategies are employed, there is a high likelihood that you can succeed as an affiliate. Consider the following factors:
Testimonials exhibit much more power in promoting your affiliate’s site if they are expressed in more details. If a testimonial from a customer or another affiliate states that the program is ‘excellent’, it should be followed by a specific description of the program’s most useful features – what makes it excellent, how it has helped the customer or affiliate, why it’s reliable, etc.
Believe it or not, skepticism is healthy when used with testimonials for promoting your affiliate’s site. Words such as, ‘I wasn’t convinced at first, BUT…’ or ‘I have always used XYZ product and didn’t think of switching to another brand. However, your product has ____ and ____ features that convinced me it was so much better.’
Even with the stated objection, a testimonial can be quite powerful if it is followed by a positive statement.
Keeping it real
Avoid using fake testimonials. ‘Designer’ testimonials are easy to write according to the specifics you require but someone will get wind of the fact and expose you. Once you’re found out, you lose your credibility. That simple act could haunt you for the rest of your life as a discredited affiliate marketer.
A few good words
Try to be selective with your choice of testimonials. They can be quite powerful when used for promoting your affiliate’s site but over-use can work against you. Find the best ones, especially the well-written and detailed testimonials and use these instead. Or, you could take the best sentences and phrases and post those in place of a whole paragraph.