Asking for a testimonial.
Hello and happy Monday! This is Susan Hyatt and it’s GO time. This is episode number 158.
This is a show where we talk about goals, and courage, and going after what you really want in life.
Today we’re talking about what might be holding you back from asking for raving reviews for your products and services & how a change in perspective might get you feeling differently about asking. Hint*the testimonial isn’t for or about you! I’ve got a challenge for you today, too, along with two simple tips on how you can approach those people who you’d love to have a testimonial from!
Wanna read the full transcript? Here ya go:
Today, our topic is…
ASKING FOR A TESTIMONIAL.
What is a testimonial?
A testimonial is a statement about how awesome you are.
It might be a client testimonial for your website. It might be a review for your latest book. It might be a letter of recommendation that you’re including in a grant application or scholarship application. It might be an email written by your last boss, expressing how brilliant you are, and helping you to get a new job or promotion.
There are lots of different types of testimonials.
One thing I’ve noticed is… it’s very, very rare that someone will spontaneously write a testimonial for you. Usually, you have to ASK for a testimonial. If you don’t ask for one, you probably won’t get one.
Here’s a story for you…
A few months ago, I was working with my literary agent to get a publishing deal for my next book.
As part of this process, I needed to collect testimonials about the book.
Basically, I needed to collect quick statements from various people saying, “This book is amazing.” “This will book will be a hit.” “Susan Hyatt is a genius,” yada yada. Publishers really like seeing those kinds of testimonials, especially if the testimonial is coming from someone who’s famous and highly respected in the field.
Now, I am a pretty confident person, BUT… I felt weird about doing this.
I didn’t feel like asking my colleagues to write testimonials for me. I felt like I would be bothering them. I felt like it might be annoying. They’re already so busy. I didn’t want to send YET ANOTHER request into their inboxes, because I know these people get a million requests every day.
There was one colleague, in particular, who’s very well-respected in our industry. I was hoping she’d give me a testimonial. But… I didn’t email her.
I wrote up an email draft, but I didn’t send it out. I kept worrying, “Ugh, I might be bugging her… she’s so busy… she probably doesn’t have time to do this… I don’t want to be a pest…” and so on.
I waited. And waited. Meanwhile, my agent is like, “Helllooo? Susan? What’s cracking? Let’s finish this book proposal and get it out there!”
That’s when I had a realization.
I realized, “I need to focus on WHY I am trying to get a book deal in the first place. It’s not for me. It’s not for my ego. It’s for the women and girls who are going to read this book.”
I wrote this book to help women stop starving, stop dieting, stop hating and punishing their bodies. I want to help women LOVE their bodies. THAT’S why I wrote this book. THAT’S the message I want to spread. THAT’S why I am busting my ass to get a book deal. It’s not about me. It’s about THEM. It’s about the people I want to help.
Once that clicked in my brain, suddenly, I felt different about emailing people to ask for a testimonial.
I felt like, “Yes, I’m asking for a testimonial about my book… but it’s not actually about ME. I’m asking for a testimonial so I can help thousands of women to stop suffering and enjoy their beautiful bodies. This is not about me, it’s about THEM.”
This was a powerful shift in perspective. It made me feel bolder, almost like I was asking for a testimonial ON BEHALF of all the woman I want to help.
Here’s my challenge for you today:
Decide what kind of testimonial you want.
Maybe you want a beautiful letter of recommendation for your grad school application.
Maybe you want a 5-star review for your new book.
Maybe you want a rave review from a client that you can feature on your website.
Maybe you want a private testimonial—like sweet letter from a friend that you can tuck in your desk drawer and read whenever you’re having a tough day.
Or maybe something else.
Then, reach out to (at least) one person and ask for that testimonial. Set a timer for 5 minutes or so. Keep it quick. Write up an email, send a text, make a call, whatever you need to do… and ask.
I have two tips for you:
Tip #1. Start with low-hanging fruit. Start with the people who already know you and completely love you. Start with your friends, family, and close colleagues. Ask those people for testimonials, first. Then work your way up to people who are harder to get ahold of, you know, like Richard Branson and Oprah.
Tip #2. Consider writing the testimonial yourself. Write it up, email it to the person, and say, “Would it be OK if I put a testimonial from you on my website? I wrote something up, based on some things you’ve said to me in the past. What do you think?” … and that way, the person you’re contacting doesn’t have to do very much work! They just have to say YES or NO. If you write the testimonial yourself, it’s way more likely that people will reply quickly and say YES.
Ask, ask, ask. Watch the love pour into your inbox. So many beautiful testimonials will be coming your way!
It’s GO! time.