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Ask These 5 Simple Questions to Get Powerful Testimonials that Build Trust and Authority

how to get powerful testimonials

Powerful testimonials have the ability to turn complete strangers into hot leads who already trust you and are ready to do business.

In this article, you will learn the 5 simple questions you need to ask your clients to get powerful testimonials that build you up as the trusted authority in your market.

Before we can get there, imagine this scenario…

You are on a cross-country road trip, and it is getting late. You haven’t eaten dinner yet, and you need to pull off to grab a bite to eat.

As you pull off the highway, there are 2 restaurants to choose from. They are right across the street from one another.

One restaurant is well lit, with large windows allowing you to see right inside, to a nearly packed house. The parking lot is almost full, and a big bright sign proudly displays the name of the business and there is a large illuminated open sign.

The place across the street? Well, that’s a different story…

That restaurant has dark windows that you can barely see through. The parking lot is very dimly lit, and there are only two cars parked out front. Both of which, you can only assume belong to the staff.

So here you are, all alone on the open road. It’s late, and you’re hungry.

Which restaurant do you choose?

Unless you like to roll the dice, you are most likely going to choose restaurant #1. And the reason is obvious.

Being on the road by yourself, and having to stop in a town you have never been to at night puts you in a somewhat vulnerable state.

So you opt for the restaurant that you feel will not only provide the best dining experience but also makes you feel safe and secure.

So how does this relate to your real estate business?

Imagine your potential clients.

The ones you are sending direct mail to. The ones who see your bandit signs on the side of the road. The ones who hear about you from a friend.

Maybe they find you from a Google search, or on Facebook.

How are you showing up to prospects who land on your website?

Are you the well lit, packed restaurant that gives off a safe and friendly feeling?

Or are you the dark and dreary restaurant that makes you want to just keep driving?

In an article published in AdWeek, it was reported that 81% of consumers conduct online research before making a big purchase, or registering for a service.

And when they land on your website, that is like your online storefront.

And just like a real brick and mortar storefront, you want to make sure your instilling confidence in potential visitors.

When marketing for distressed sellers, cash buyers, or any other niche in real estate, it’s imperative that you put yourself in the shoes of your prospect.

Better yet, as the great Robert Collier once said, you want to “enter the conversation that is already taking place in the customer’s mind.”

How does that apply to your business, and testimonials.

Think back to the example of the 2 restaurants. Those restaurants represent 2 separate businesses, and how they are perceived online.

You want your website, and the rest of your presence online, to reflect that of restaurant #1.

It is well lit, the parking lot is full, there is a large open sign.

When reading the beginning of this post, there was no question as to which restaurant you would have chosen.

The same needs to be said about your business when a prospect visits your website for the first time.

Is the site easy to navigate?

Is the value that your business provides clearly stated?

Has the business ever helped anyone in their situation? (Read: Are there testimonials?)

You know as well as I do, that the majority of your prospects are receiving mail every day from dozens of investors.

Imagine your prospect looking at 5 different direct mail pieces promising to buy their house for cash.

What do you think they are going to do first?

They are going to pull out their phone (not to make a call), or laptop if they have one, and type in the web address that they see at the bottom of the mailer.

Here is an example of a direct mail piece from REIPrintmail.com

They want to see if the business is legit.

They are going to do their research before picking up the phone and actually making a call.

After all, many of your prospects are in a very vulnerable state, and they don’t want to feel like they are getting fooled into doing business with someone who is looking to steal their house.

So…when they visit your website, what are they looking for?

Again, put yourself in their shoes. What would you be looking for?

You would want to see that this business has helped people, just like you, get out of a bad situation.

Think of the confidence you would have to pick up the phone and call a company if you Google their business name, and you see they have over 20 5 Star reviews on Google.

When they click on the link to visit your site, they see 3 smiling faces right below a form that reads “We will pay you cash for your property and close fast”.

Right next to those smiling faces are gleaming testimonials stating why people should trust your company to buy their house, and solve their problem. Not to mention, how painless your company makes it!

In fact, in an article published by Forbes, 88% of people surveyed said they trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. 

So how do you get such gleaming testimonials?

You will find that by simply asking for a testimonial, a client will give a pretty generic review of your business.

The reason being, most clients don’t know how to properly give a testimonial, at least not a powerful one.

That is why you, as the business owner, need to learn how to properly ask for one.

Ideally, the best time to ask for the testimonial is after closing. This is when the whole process is still fresh in your client’s head, so it won’t require them to try to remember how their experience with your company was. 

If they are comfortable, a video testimonial is always the best type of testimonial to receive. 

During a video testimonial there are a few things to note: 

  1. Have the questions you’re going to ask ready. You don’t want to scramble trying to figure out what you’re going to ask them. Plus, being prepared will make the process much smoother.  
  2. When asking the questions try to get them to be as conversational as possible. 
  3. Before putting the testimonial on your website, you will want to edit out the audio when you’re asking the questions. 
  4. It comes off as more genuine if you’re not in the shot interviewing your client. If you are in the shot it appears that they are being forced to answer questions, and not volunteering to do it. 
This testimonial is from REI Bootcamp 16. Questions were being asked to elicit the responses you are hearing, but the video was edited to remove the audio of the questions being asked, so it comes across as a genuine testimonial.

Not everyone will be comfortable getting in front of the camera though. If they aren’t, ask them if they’d be comfortable leaving you a review on Google or on your Facebook page instead. You can always use those reviews on your website as well!

Send them the direct links to your Google My Business review page, or your Facebook page. You want to make it as easy as possible for a client to leave you a review, and chances are if you don’t provide direct links they won’t take the time to find your pages.

Once you have the reviews you can take screenshots of them, and use them as testimonials on your website instead (with the client’s permission of course).

This is a testimonial we received via Facebook, so we used this directly on the homepage of our website.

If they agreed to a video when it’s time for them to give you the testimonial ask them these 5 simple questions, and you will be amazed at what you get back.

You will find that clients will open up, and really start to rave about your level of care and service (assuming you provide a good service).

Ask these 5 simple questions to get powerful testimonials that build trust and authority.

  1. What concerns did you have when selling your house to an investor?

    This question is important because no matter how motivated your clients are to sell, they always have some concerns before trusting a company to buy their house.

    There are a handful of concerns that they may have, and many of your future clients will have the same concerns before doing business with you.

    The answer to this question will help future clients see that you’ve helped people with the same problems in the past, and will help you gain immediate trust and authority.

  2. What did you find as a result of selling your house with [XYZ Company]

    The answer to this question will provide answers to the most common objections that your future prospects will have.

    When they watch a video or read an online review of someone that was suffering from the same problem they currently have, and your company was able to relieve that pain, you have an immediate leg up on any other company in your market.

  3. What specifically did you like most about working with [XYZ Company?]

    This question will elicit a very specific response and one that typically provides a gleaming review for your company’s service and more importantly, your character.

    Many times your client will rave about how easy the process was, and how comfortable they felt throughout their time working with you.

  4. What would you say to a homeowner that is on the fence about selling their house to [XYZ Company]

    Again, the answer to this question will provide a vote of confidence from a third party. Typically you will hear something like this…

    “If you’re on the fence about selling your house to ABC Home Buyers you have to give them a call. They made the process so easy, and I can breathe a huge sigh of relief now that I am out from under my troubled property.”

  5. Is there anything else you would like to add?

    By now, they’ve probably said all there is to say about you and your company, but sometimes you get the warmest parting words that you never would have expected.

    Remember, if they have nothing else to say, you can always edit that part of the video out.

Through this process, you will not only collect powerful review that you can use on your websites and landing pages, you will also learn a lot about your business, and your clients.

The website templates inside REI BlackBook are fully customizable, and this makes it super simple to easily add your testimonials to your website. Above is an example of a video testimonial that has been added to a website built inside REI BlackBook.

These testimonials will reveal the chinks in your armor, and allow you to build a better business.

They will also reveal common objections that your clients had before doing business with you.

A powerful testimonial will overcome objections for future clients and will help increase conversion rates on your website.

Simply put, future clients visiting your website will feel more comfortable as they read the testimonials, and stories of those you have helped in the past.

This will result in more of them completing your web form, or calling the number on your website or landing page.

This is a strategy that you can implement immediately and will have a massive positive impact on your business.

Testimonials are money in the bank, and taking the time to collect them to use in future marketing is smart business.

And don’t let technology get in the way.

You can record incredible testimonials directly from your phone, and send them off to Fiverr.com to be edited.

So be sure to ask for a testimonial at your next closing, and use these 5 simple questions to get rave reviews from your clients.

Josh Arras

Josh Arras

Josh Arras is the Director of Marketing at REI BlackBook and has spent nearly his entire career designing and building marketing campaigns that grow companies predictably and profitably and has trained thousands of investors across the country on this topic.
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