When a client tells me this, I get extremely happy. They’ve seen that I’m a dedicated writer, are pleased with the results, and will likely hire me again.
As a freelance storyteller and marketing consultant, client testimonials are important for securing new freelance writing jobs. These testimonials, whether they’re on LinkedIn, a personal website, or in an email signature, act as social proof. They encourage prospective clients to trust me, as they can see that others do.
But how can I encourage this client to tell others how happy they are with my services? How can I turn their satisfaction into sales collateral? Once you have them, what should you do with them?
The best way to get testimonials is to ask, but it’s important to ask at the right time.
“I usually wait until a client compliments me on my work, and then when they do, I ask if they wouldn’t mind sending that compliment as a LinkedIn recommendation,” says Kristi Hines, a Phoenix-based freelance writer who specializes in blog content and Web copy.
You can encourage clients by asking for a testimonial once you’ve delivered a piece of content they’re particularly happy with. It’s best to ask when you’re actively working with a client, as opposed to long after the fact, when the client has forgotten the value that you provided.
Freelance writers are—obviously—good at writing. So when you ask for a testimonial, use your persuasive skills. Remind the client of the valuable work you did together to make them feel positive about the relationship. Then make the ask.
For example, here’s how I might ask a client for a testimonial:
It’s been so amazing working with you on these freelance writing jobs, and I’m delighted with the results we’ve achieved together. Blog growth has grown by 300% since we started, which is a pretty impressive accomplishment. I would love if you could write a short testimonial about our work together for my LinkedIn profile—it would mean a lot.
A company doesn’t hire you; a content manager or editor does. Like you, that person is trying to grow her career.
Sometimes, I offer to write a testimonial for a client if she writes one for me. Usually, the person is flattered that I feel strongly about her capabilities and is more than willing to write a testimonial for me in order to receive one of her own.
I only use this strategy when I love working with the other person and am more than happy to recommend her to others. I don’t ask clients to recommend me if they’re not comfortable, and I often leave testimonials for clients without expecting anything in return.
You can display testimonials wherever clients find you, whether on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, or your personal website.
You also shouldn’t hesitate to repurpose testimonials. Kristi Hines likes to collect testimonials using LinkedIn, and uses a tool called Spectoos to display the testimonials on her website.
Joel Klettke, Founder of Business Casual Copywriting, also has clients leave testimonials on LinkedIn, then features these on his business website.
If your testimonials are too long, it’s going to turn off prospective clients. They’ll be overwhelmed by the content, and won’t be able to digest the most important information.
Pam Didner, a content marketing consultant and author, wrote a book on content marketing and wanted to display the testimonials on her website. People liked her book so much that they wrote lengthy reviews detailing what they loved. These testimonials were awesome, but their length was overwhelming, so Pam shortened them to be more relatable and accessible.
Without testimonials, it’s harder for potential clients to quickly determine that you’re good at what you do. These testimonials provide both a snapshot of confidence as well as reassurance—a final piece of persuasion—that you’re the right person for the job. If you want to level up your freelance writing career, it’s essential that you ask clients for glowing testimonials. These testimonials are low-risk, high-reward inquiries that can lead to other fulfilling freelance writing jobs.