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Words in Motion 
Writing in service to your voice

March 2009
What's good about testimonials?
Do you use testimonials? One smart WordDrive client has collected dozens of them. She's asked me to transform them into an effective marketing tool.

Why are testimonials worth the work?
  • They have the persuasive power of endorsements from people who have actually benefited from your services.
  • They give a sense of your reliability as a vendor.
  • They give a sense of what you are like and how you work.
  • They add energy to your marketing materials.
In other words, they help to engage the potential client and lay the groundwork for a working relationship.

Guidelines for testimonials
  • Include client's name, title, company and location.
  • If they need work to make them effective, be sure not to change the voice.
  • Use them to overcome objections ("WordDrive's location 3,000 miles away was absolutely no obstacle to successful completion of the newsletter.").
  • Place them around your website, like lighted candles here and there.
  • Have dozens? arrange them by industry group, or by product.
  • Keep them fresh (see "Collecting testimonials," below).
Feel a need to make them up?
While you wouldn't really post imaginary testimonials, they can be a great source of energy for you. Write down in a notebook all the things you'd like to hear from clients about your outstanding work, and read them over from time to time to encourage yourself.

Collecting testimonials
Make it easier by telling your clients to expect a brief project review. Have a set of questions ready, such as, "How has the work we've done together been helpful? What could have been done differently?" You'll gain some great material for testimonials and strengthen your ties to the client.
From the fountain pen: Are websites and computers organic?
fountain pen blue ink
I've long had the feeling that computers are more like plants than machines.  If my computer suddenly freezes up I am always tempted to assume an organic--or even emotional--problem in the system. I know, I know, this is fantasy--but why, then, do we talk about "a bug" or "a virus"?

Certainly it's true that designing a website requires an organic approach. Everyone will visit your site using a different path. People are not expecting the careful order of printed materials. Instead they are stepping from page to page, from link to link, as they might move around in a garden. I have been a lover of books all my life, but I'm delighted by the flexibility, the organic sensation, of a well-designed website.

Is there a website you especially admire for its ease of use? Let me know and I'll share it with readers next month.

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In This Issue
What's good about testimonials?
From the fountain pen: Are websites and computers organic?
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Special Offer
Have a testimonial that you think needs work? WordDrive will review and, if you wish, rewrite a testimonial, at no charge, so you get the most effect from it. Contact WordDrive now.

Offer good through June 30 2009.

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