Using Video Testimonials
How to Use Your Customer Testimonial Videos to Greatest Effect
Customer testimonial videos can provide marketers with a very powerful option for moving prospects through a sales pipeline toward becoming a customer. But, it’s important to know where in your pipeline, and within your broader marketing funnel, customer testimonial videos are most effective.
Furthermore, you can’t just throw a testimonial on Youtube and expect it to reach its full profit potential, so we’ll shine a light on how to optimize your video testimonials for marketing performance.
Use the table of contents to find the topic you’re most interested in, and jump right in. Bookmark this page, or download the PDF, so you can return to it later.
Table of Contents
- Part 3: How to Use Video Testimonials in Your Marketing
Customer Testimonial Videos Are BOFU Content
For all practical purposes, the only prospects who really care about what your existing customers have to say about you, are prospects who are seriously thinking about making a purchase. As such, testimonial videos are bottom of funnel (or BOFU) content.
By the time prospects reach the bottom of the funnel, they’ve been educated on the scope of their problems and opportunities. They’ve are aware of your company, and how you can make their lives better. And, they have some idea of what your product or services might cost.
It’s also likely, that they have all that same information about your competitors. So, your customer testimonial videos might be the last thing your prospects see, before deciding to buy from you or someone else.
That means that you’ll want to locate your testimonial videos at locations that serious buyers tend to visit, before making that decision. Conversely, you don’t want to waste valuable website real estate by placing testimonial video on pages designed to get prospects into your funnel in the first place.
That said, one effective top of funnel use for customer video testimonials is to combine snippets from multiple videos into a “sizzle reel” featuring customers who are well known, or influential in the markets you serve.
This sort of video name dropping can be an effective PR strategy for immediately establishing your company as the go-to provider for industry leaders.
Customer Testimonial Videos Are for Closers
Video testimonials can be the most important pieces of content you have, for helping prospects make the decision to buy from you.
With that in mind, some of the best locations for testimonial placement include:
- Pricing pages
- Order forms
- Pages containing frequently asked questions
- Landing pages optimized for sales conversion
- About Us pages
- About Our Customers pages
- Cold Emails
- BOFU Email Nurturing
Customer testimonial videos are also especially well-suited for 1:1 sales outreach. Good sales people can sense when a prospect is getting ready to buy. Based on this knowledge, a well-timed email with links to your latest testimonial videos can be especially effective.
For more involved B2B sales, in which a proposal has already been sent, a customer testimonial video may be the only piece of content a prospect wants to see, at that stage of their journey where they’re seriously contemplating a buying decision.
Optimize the Performance of Your Customer Testimonial Videos
If the principle value of testimonial videos is to help prospects make buying decisions, you can increase the effectiveness of those videos by making those decisions even easier.
Appropriate calls to action, whether within, superimposed on top of, or surrounding your customer video testimonials can make a big difference.
We’ve already talked about including calls to action within your videos, augmented by clickable links provided by your video platform. Let’s explore some ideas for supporting your videos on the website pages where they reside. Here are some effective options:
- Provide a chat option, so that prospects can immediately speak with a salesperson about purchase options.
- Position online order forms on the same page.
- Provide links to other information that you know to be important for prospects in the final buying stages. (E.g., pricing, installation options, case studies, etc.)
- List any relevant sales
- Link to other testimonials
By providing prospects with everything they need to make a final buying decision, you can dramatically improve the effectiveness of your customer testimonial videos, and nudge prospects along toward finally becoming customers.
Invest in a Good Video Platform
Video platforms provide you with the ability to store and provide access to your video productions. They eliminate a whole host of problems associated with the size and availability of video files, and in most cases, provide you with added functionality for viewer customization, audience engagement, and analytics.
Working with Video Files
Video files can be very big, and managing them can be tedious, unwieldy and expensive. And, while it is technically possible to load videos directly to your own website, it’s not a recommended practice.
Even a small library of videos on your website would make audience viewing less efficient and might even slow down the rest of your site.
Video platforms allow you to affordably store large video file collections in the cloud, and provide as-needed access to them, for a wide range of marketing purposes.
The Problem with YouTube
YouTube is an amazing site, and every video marketer should have a presence there. If your only interest is to build a presence on YouTube, then storing your video collection there can be a fine idea.
However, if you’re interested in driving prospects back to your website, where they can consume other, non-video content, submit forms, and/or order products and services, YouTube is problematic, because YouTube does everything in its power to keep users on YouTube.
It’s also problematic if you want complete control over the viewing experience. That’s because YouTube is an advertising platform that controls what viewers see and how they see it.
Of course, it’s possible to load your videos to YouTube and provide a link within your website. But, that’s only a partial fix, because you still have to deal with the YouTube viewer.
After each view, the YouTube viewer is going to serve up a series of recommended videos and video ads to your prospects on your to website, in an effort to get them to leave your website, and go to the YouTube site. You have little control over the videos or ads that YouTube will serve up to your viewers.
So, unless you want your prospects to go from one of your product videos to the latest cat video (not that there’s anything wrong with cat videos), you’re going to have to find another solution.
A Video Viewer of Your Very Own
The most important feature offered by video platforms is the ability to customize your own viewer, giving you complete control over how your prospects experience your videos.
Your customized viewer can reflect your brand colors, and be free of any outside branding marks. Plus, you’ll have complete control over what happens after each video is viewed.
You’ll have added control over how your videos are embedded on websites and shared with others. You’ll also be able to passwords for viewing and downloading, or prevent downloading entirely.
Add Calls to Action, Annotation and Turnstiles
Video platforms also help you to encourage viewer behavior, by allowing you to add clickable calls to action and other annotation to your video.
Of course, your video should already contain its own calls to action, within the video itself. Using either audio or text, you should be telling viewers what you would like them to do, after they’ve watched your video.
Video platforms provide additional engagement options by allowing you to encourage viewers to click on links that are superimposed on top of your video. Clicking on one of those links can take viewers to a form, or to a particular page on your website, like your online store.
Another powerful tool is a turnstile (pictured above), which allows you to stop the video after a pre-determined amount of time, and require the viewer to provide their email address, or other information, before proceeding with the rest of the video.
Because these tools are added to your video after it’s produced, they give you added flexibility and control over your ability to encourage engagement activity. Got a sale coming up? Add a call to action to all your videos. In the middle of a subscription drive? Add a turnstile.
The Unique Power of Video Analytics
Analytics are a crucial component of any marketing campaign. They allow you to measure success, and make corrections to campaigns in the field.
Video analytics offer even more decision support, by providing information on how much of your content is being consumed.
You may know from Google Analytics how many people have visited your latest blog post. You’ll also know how long they spent on that page, which can be a helpful, albeit somewhat inaccurate gauge of how much of that blog post was actually consumed.
With video, you’ll be able to tell exactly how much of each video is being watched, where people go back to re-view segments of each video, and where individuals abandon the video and move on to other content.
Metrics like these give you added understanding of how your content is being consumed, and allow you to modify that content, or even trigger additional automation sequences based on viewing behavior. (E.g., if a key prospect watches a video three times, and re-watches the segment on pricing, you might want to notify a salesperson, so they can follow up.)
Taken together, all these feature make a good video platform a must for any marketers serious about adding video to their marketing mix, and getting the greatest return on their video marketing investment.
Video Marketing Is More About Marketing Than It Is About Video
For our purposes here, video is best understood as a marketing tool, like writing. But, it is the ideas and the intent behind the use of those tools that constitute marketing.
Just like good blog content, good customer testimonial videos rely on a host of different marketing disciplines for their success. Ideally, both would be based on proper audience persona input, keyword research, established branding and messaging, promotion, success measurement, and other practices.Just like good blog content, good customer testimonial videos rely on a host of different marketing disciplines for their success. Click To Tweet
So, before you decide to go it alone, be sure to incorporate these considerations into your thinking.
The most beautiful video in the world will do you no good (and will cost you a lot of money), if it’s not properly crafted to serve your marketing ends, or if it’s not properly deployed and promoted.
If you’re missing the marketing chops, an agency is probably your best bet.
Why You Might Want to Hire an Agency
If all this sound like a lot of trouble, or makes you nervous (and who could blame you) maybe hiring an agency to help you with at least parts of the production process isn’t such a bad idea.
As the old saying goes, you only have one chance to make a first impression, and that’s doubly important when your production involves clients, as it necessarily does with testimonial videos.
Keep in mind, however, that it’s not an all-or-nothing proposition. A good agency should be willing to help with those parts of the process where you need support, but leave you to your own devices where you feel confident in your abilities.
With that in mind, here are the component parts of the video marketing process used to produce, distribute and promote your testimonial video content.
One or all of these component parts can be successfully outsourced to an agency:
- Customer Satisfaction/Reference Programming
- Video Production
- Post-production and Review
- Distribution and Promotion
So, carefully consider which of these component parts you’re comfortable with, and which of them you might need some help with. Then, find an agency that will work in partnership with you to get the job done.
There’s certainly a lot to learn about customer testimonial videos here, but it’s well worth learning.
Getting strangers to trust what you’re telling them isn’t getting any easier. A collection of well-executed customer testimonial videos can make a huge difference.
As you proceed, keep these things front of mind:
- Start slow, and build a solid strategy for every video you shoot.
- Work with your best customers to craft a great story that puts you in the best light, engages viewers and helps new customers buy from you.
- Focus on the fundamentals when shooting your video.
- Learn how to really put your videos to work, when they’re completed.
- Finally, don’t be afraid to ask for help. Video marketing agencies stand ready to help you with part or all of the process.
At Thoughtcast Media, we do a lot of testimonial videos for our clients. It’s one of our specialties, and we’d love to tell you about it.
We offer an all-inclusive, fixed-price video testimonial service, that make sense if you need only a few videos. We can also build an entire custom program for you, if you’re looking for a truly strategic solution.
Whatever your needs, we’re here to help.