How Testimonials Can Hurt Your Conversions

Everyone knows testimonials are critical for sales success. You need some social proof in your sales presentation to tell prospects your product/service provides the benefits that are advertised.

However, there are 3 ways testimonials can hurt you. All these have to do with the quality and appearance of the testimonial…so be on the lookout for these when your creating your promotion.

1) The Testimonial Photo Looks “Too” Perfect

This is the case when people use photos of people that look too perfect…as if they got the photos off a stock photo site.

In other words, they have a “fake” look to them.

It is best to use REAL photos. Imperfections and all.  They look more authentic and look like REAL people to the prospect.

I am sure you know where I’m coming from.  You’ve probably seen testimonial photos that look a little TOO perfect…and you probably assumed these were fake testimonials.

Well, chances are, they probably are. And that’s what potential prospects might think when they come to your site and see picture-perfect photos of your satisfied customers!

2) Testimonials from “Nancy S.” and “Steve W.”

You’ve probably seen these. Testimonials with the last name as an initial.  These look extremely fake and it’s even worse when there’s no photo.

If the person giving the testimonial does not feel comfortable using their real name, it’s best just to use a full pen name for the testimonial.

Further, it also helps to add other information, such as location and website, to the testimonial. The more information the testimonial contains, the more credible it looks!

3) Testimonials That Look Like They Were Written By A Copywriter

You’ve probably seen these too. Testimonials that use perfect grammar, contain the right words, and are written in a persuasive manner.

This can be another “red flag” that the testimonial could be fake in the mind of your prospect.

To remedy this, make sure you mix in some testimonials that are shorter and not as “perfect-sounding”.  It is a common practice for copywriters to take customer’s testimonials and reword them so they flow better.  This is ethical if the person giving the testimonial approves it.

The bottom line is you don’t want your testimonials to be TOO perfect. The more “bumps and bruises” your testimonials have, the more authentic and believable they are.

This is especially true if you’re in an ultra-competitive market where people have been pitched over and over again. Weight loss and the internet marketing niche are good examples.

These prospects know what “fake” looks like…and are inherently on-guard when they are reading an advertisement.

Keep in mind I’m not saying to NEVER  use a testimonial that has these 3 characteristics. If you have 20 testimonials and ALL of them have picture-perfect photos, then this might raise a red flag in your prospect’s mind.

Keep these tips in mind when you write your next promotion.  I will reveal more testimonial tips (along with how to get testimonials) later on.

Until next time.

Kevin Hill

“The Professor Of High Response”



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