Combining engaging, useful video content with great testimonials is a real strategy for success.

You need all the other cogs in your marketing machine to be optimised too, but it’s surprising how powerful a five-minute chat with one of your customers can be…

Here’s a film I made for Sukh Sidhu at his Online Fitness Business event in August 2017, built around the testimonials of the attendees.

You tell me – is there any doubt that Sukh is an expert in his industry who has droves of satisfied clients?

To gain the trust of your audience you need to prove it to them through social proof.

The perfect format for this is video of your clients or customers summarising their experience of whatever it is you’ve done for them.

So what are the 5 ingredients for great-looking, genuine-sounding, engaging testimonial videos like this that will help debunk your buyers’ objections?

Oh, and if you’re considering hiring actors or your mates to make up testimonials for you, get off this blog and come back when you’ve got a good business.

1) It’s gotta look great

It should go without saying, but a low-quality, poorly-lit or out-of-focus video is immediately going to be off-putting for your viewer.

It’s very hard to appear premium and professional with sub-standard visuals; this applies to all of your video uploads.

Make sure you get the actual filming part right from the start, to save yourself time and headaches later.

Use the best equipment you’ve got. If that’s your smartphone, no worries – just check that the video quality is set as high as possible in the camera’s settings.

Pay attention to the light in your environment. Have a dominant light source in front of your subject, even if that’s just a window. Look for distracting objects in the background and move/remove them if necessary.

2) It’s gotta sound great

“Sound is one half of the picture” – George Lucas

I’m always harking on at my clients that in video, what you hear is just as important as what you can see.

In fact, I’ve seen many times that you can get away with average visuals, but if your video has low-quality, echoey or unintelligible sound, your audience is far more likely to switch off.

So don’t just hit record and hope it will be fine. Just like you did with light, take a few minutes to pay attention to the sound in your filming environment.

Can you hear any distracting noises, like a ticking clock or a printer? Could you avoid the loud traffic outside by simply closing a window?

Combining a keen ear with a pro-quality microphone will work wonders for the sound quality of your videos, nigh-on eliminating the chance of your viewer clicking away in disgust.

3) Ask the right questions

A good testimonial addresses the concerns and objections of the viewer.

Think about the difference between your customer giving the testimonial, and the potential customer watching the video; they’re at different stages in the buyer’s journey.

The happy customer has (presumably) exchanged their hard-earned cash for your product or service, which has helped fix whatever problem they had.

The viewer, on the other hand, is sceptical as to whether you and the thing you’re offering can be trusted.

There’s far too much on this point to cover in one blog post, but here are a few example questions designed to give an answer that will address your customer’s reservations:

What problems were you having before this product/service?

Tell me about 3 ways this product/service has helped you.

What would you say to someone who is considering this product/service?

4) Pick out the best bits

I see a lot of testimonial videos that are woefully boring.

Sometimes your customer will go into the fine details and speak to the camera for minutes on end. This enthusiasm is great, but the truth is your viewer will probably lose interest.

To retain the attention of your viewer, and address their concerns more succinctly, you should avoid uploading the full, unedited video testimonial and isolate the most valuable sections instead.

Listen out for the golden one-liners. Then combine with…

5) B-Roll

B-Roll is “extra footage” – video clips, with or without sound, that help tell your story.

Footage of your testimonial-giver actually using your product or service, interspersed with their verbal testimonial, will increase the production value of your video massively.

Not only will your video be more visually-engaging, but your viewers get to see your product or service in action, proving to them that what you’re offering really works.

Without sounding too “woo”, there’s a bit of an art to crafting a really good testimonial film, and it can’t be done by everyone.

But there’s no denying its value and, to be honest, without one it’s impossible to back up your claims of being awesome.

For more information like this on making and utilising effective videos:

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