There are good ways and bad ways to use testimonial videos.

The difference can be between creating a real impact that results in more sales, or wasting good content by presenting it at the wrong time.

So when and where should you use testimonials for the best effect?

Let me use a story as an example.

Last week I went for lunch in the marketplace at my favorite burger stall. It was already busy with a few customers and not long after I ordered my food, a couple came over to read the chalkboard menu.

They had clearly never eaten the food before because they were taking forever to decide what they wanted; and there were only 3 things on the menu.

The same three things every week.

The man already had his money out ready to pay but they just couldn’t decide. Slowly he began opening his wallet again to put away his money and go somewhere else.

Perhaps to find another menu with fewer choices?

There were only 3 things on the menu, but it was still hard for him to make a decision!

Why?

Just before he put it away I was handed my Bean Burger and said to them both:

“You need to try the Bean Burger, it’s so good! And this coleslaw – you’ve never tasted anything like it!”

And what happened…

He handed over the money straight away and order bean burgers for them both.

I didn’t hang around to watch them eat (that would have been a bit weird) besides my work was done. I’d helped my friend sell two more burgers and I’d helped the customers get a lunch they’d enjoy.

Imagine a different scenario.

What if I’d seen this couple two hours earlier and I’d been handing out flyers for the burger stall, hoping to catch people in their mid-morning coffee breaks.

I could have handed them a flyer and said:

“Come to use for lunch today, this place does the best Bean Burgers and Slaw in Kingston”

So you think this would have had the same effect?

Well, I had their attention and I created some awareness, but at around 10.30am I would be trying to convince them at the wrong time. If they are not hungry, they have no desire to get lunch.

In my story, they bought the burgers because they the endorsement reassured them at just the right time to take action. I was the proof that they needed to be reassured that a spicy Bean Burger would satisfy their hunger and give them more… the chance to experience the best burger in Kingston!

Timing is everything.

Which is why putting video testimonials immediately in front of first-time visitors to your website can be the fastest way to waste good social proof.

Anyone visiting your site expects to hear customers saying good things about your business. But they don’t need convincing so early on because they have other things on their mind – finding out more about your products or services.

You need to let them take their own journey of discovery and it has to be valuable.

First, use video to further introduce and build interest in your business. Use good web design, great copy and explainer videos about what you do.

Then you can to go deeper into product or service videos to create desire.

Then introduce testimonials and case study videos to provide proof and build trust.

Testimonial videos only turn prospects into sales when they’re used in the right place at the right time. You can’t take a customer from ‘aware’ to ‘trusting’ and skip ‘interest’ and ‘desire’.

Give your prospects the information they need and in the right order.

Don’t try and use testimonials to create shortcuts to sales. If they’re forced into view too soon they will be watched, forgotten and never revisited and you’ll have wasted one of your most powerful sales tools.