How to Write a Testimonial (With Examples)

Updated March 10, 2023

Testimonials are one of the most important tools a company can use to show potential customers how valuable their products and services are. Testimonials are a short statement that describes how a product or service worked for a customer.

In this article, we describe what a testimonial is, explain how to write one, define the different types and offer some examples.

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What is a testimonial?

A testimonial is a statement from a past customer that describes how a product or service helped them. Testimonials are often written by the business based on specific questions they ask satisfied customers. They usually show impact through before-and-after comparisons or provide specific improvement statistics.

Testimonials are different from reviews because reviews are generally unguided and are written directly by the customer. Testimonials can help build trust and credibility with your customers, especially if they are used to overcome skepticism. Companies usually display them on the front page of their website, marketing materials and social media profiles.

Related: 4 Steps to Building a Brand

Why are testimonials important?

Testimonials are important because they help you build credibility with future customers. Testimonials allow you to use your customers' words to show how your product or service solved a problem for them.

Future customers respond to testimonials as more authentic than a company's statements about their own products, especially if there is a before-and-after image, a video or statistics to clearly show the results. Testimonials help your future customers see what your company can offer them through a marketing tactic that seems very similar to word of mouth.

How to write a testimonial

Here is how to write an effective and provocative testimonial:

  1. Determine what story you want to tell

  2. Ask specific questions

  3. Keep it short and conversational

  4. Use the customer's name and include pictures, if possible

Related: SMART Goals: Definition and Examples

1. Determine what story you want to tell

You want your testimonials to tell a story about your product and business. You should consider what kind of feelings you want your potential customers to have about your product, what challenges your customers overcame and what value they found in using your services or products.

Once you decide what narrative you are building, you can also decide what kind of testimonials would work best for your business.

2. Ask specific questions

You want to guide your customers to give you the kind of information you will include in the testimonial. Build your questions around the story you are telling about your business and products. Your questions should be specific and open-ended so you can get as much information as possible.

You will be using these answers to build the testimonial, so you want to be sure you have a lot to work with. You should ask your customer questions about what concerns they had, how they were overcome and their results from using your product or service.

3. Keep it short and conversational

Your testimonial should only be two or three paragraphs, at most. They should be written in your customer's tone so that your testimonial doesn't seem overly formal or technical. Testimonials are accessible, easy to understand the content that connects with potential customers.

4. Use the customer's name and include pictures, if possible

You want to use your customer's name for the testimonial to feel genuine. Associating your customer's name with the testimonial will help your future customers to put a name to the story the testimonial is telling.

Pictures are an important part of storytelling and your customers will respond to them, whether it is before and after images or a company logo. If you can, include an image to demonstrate the value of your services or products.

Types of testimonials

Different kinds of testimonials are more engaging and seem more authentic than others. The kind of testimonial you use depends on what story you are trying to tell and how you intend to display it. Here are the different kinds of testimonials:

  • Quote testimonial: This testimonial uses words directly from a satisfied customer and is the most common kind.

  • Peer testimonial: This testimonial shows your customer as someone similar to your future customers and usually includes a portrait.

  • Social testimonial: This is an organic testimonial, where your customer offers to share their experience with your company on social media.

  • Video testimonial: This testimonial is when you record your customer talking about your product. It's eye-catching, authentic and engaging.

  • Interview testimonial: This testimonial uses a question-and-answer format on video or in print where you ask your customers about their experience with your company.

  • Influencer testimonial: This testimonial is when celebrities or social media personalities speak for your company. You should be sure that any paid influencer campaigns are clearly labeled

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Here are some examples of testimonials:

Quote testimonial

"We were looking for an affordable marketing company and Silver Tongue Media more than delivered. They manage our blog and social media accounts and produce our brochures. We saw an immediate increase in our social media presence and our followers doubled in a month and our garage business has increased 50% in two months! They took the time to understand who we are as a company and gave us a few amazing marketing plans to choose from. We wholeheartedly recommend Silver Tongue to everyone we know."

- Julian Buchanan, CEO Smooth Ride Automotive Repair

Social testimonial

"If you are looking for a rare book, you need to check out Parchment Bound Books on Main Street. I was looking for a first edition for my dad's birthday and I had almost given up. I went in just to see what they had and they were the friendliest people! They helped me find the perfect book for him and even offered a layaway. They have a huge selection of new, used and collectible books and their cappuccinos are to die for."

-Alex White

Influencer testimonial

"Hello, everyone! I'm Bella Rodriguez and today's post is sponsored by Bold and Beautiful Cosmetics. This is a vegan cosmetics brand owned and operated by a woman of color! They sent me three lip colors and I'm going to show them off to you. This first one is a cherry red and it's everything I've ever wanted in a red lip. Look how smoothly it goes on! And the coverage is perfect. I love this color too much to take it off. I'll swatch it on my arm with the other two, so you can see the other colors."

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