Testimonials lend credibility to your brand message.
But whom should you pay to testify?
You have a choice between customers, experts and celebrities.
Customer testimonials can be quite persuasive, provided that they appear to be unbiased.
You could get loyal customers to tell the world why they’ve stayed with your brand, or new customers to talk about why they switched over.
With expert testimonials, such as from lawyers, scientists, doctors and engineers, the persuasive power comes from their skills, talents, knowledge and reputation in the field.
Celebrity testimonials, by far the most popular option, give you immediate awareness, recognition and interest.
But why do people pay so much attention to celebrities?
It could be that we feel we know them intimately, having seen them on screens so often.
Research shows that when people are outstanding in one field, this creates a halo effect.
We expect the celebrities we admire to be intelligent, moral, reputable and universally awesome in other fields too.
On the flipside, there is always the danger with using celebrities that at the end of the day, viewers only remember the celebrity and just can’t recall the brand.
And when the celebrity fails to live up to our moral expectations (as happened with Tiger Woods and Lance Armstrong), the brand image suffers.
The creative approach to using testimonials is to start with the most unexpected person you can imagine.
Wait. It doesn’t even have to a person.