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How to use customer surveys to gather testimonials

Posted by Ethan Hawkes on Sep 7, 2017 9:00:00 AM
Ethan Hawkes
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Testimonials can be a hassle to gather, but they’re also extremely crucial for showing new customers your legitimacy. Luckily, customer surveys gathered through SurveyMe can be an excellent way of collecting testimonials privately and then publishing them publicly.

We’ve often stated how important it is to gather anonymous feedback in order for your business to get honest answers. But sometimes you receive feedback that is so overwhelmingly positive, you just have to show it to the public.

Here are some steps for using customer surveys to gather testimonials.

1. Create a survey with an open-ended question.

The only possible way to gather customer testimonials is an open-ended question -- a survey question where the participant can type out whatever response they want.

These questions can be inserted anywhere in the survey, but we recommend limiting the number of open-ended questions to one or two.

How to ask those open-ended questions is also important.

Frame your questions in a way that encourages loyal customers to leave paragraph long testimonials. Keep in mind that some will leave short sentences, but the most passionate customers will leave longer reviews.

Here are some examples to get you started:

  • What do you like most about our business?
  • How did using our business help you with yours? (B2B only)
  • How do we make your life easier?

Notice how these are all leading questions? These aren’t great for getting the most honest feedback, but they’re great for trying to encourage a positive response.

2. Add an email address or another kind of tracking question

When you’re done creating your survey, make sure you add a way of collecting customer contact data. We recommend simply adding an email collection question to the end of the survey. 

Let your customers know the reason for needing their email and tell them you won’t spam their account. A great follow up question would be asking if customers want to be added to an email list to receive promotions (free leads!!).

3. Launch the survey

Get this survey in front of customers as soon as possible and maximize responses by adding a reward as an incentive for survey completion.

4. Curate the best responses

After you’ve run your customer survey, it’s time to check on the results. Scroll through responses to the open-ended question and find the meatiest replies.

Ideal testimonials should be a few sentences long and highlight how your business provides value to your customer. Once you have about half a dozen of the best ones, it’s time to move on. If you don’t have the responses you’re looking for, keep the survey running.

5. Ask permission to publish

Send an email to each of the customers who submitted testimonials you want to use. Ask if you can publish their answers publicly. Make sure you get their full name, title and place of work as well. You want to email all potential promoters because you never know who will actually bother sending a return email. AKA -- don’t put all your eggs in one basket.

In the email, also ask for permission to interview the customer to further elaborate on their testimonial. A customer testimonial can be so much richer and thought-provoking if they’re interviewed by a marketing team member.

Once you get the go ahead from a customer….

6. Publish!

Congratulations! You have a fresh, new testimonial. Enjoy using it anywhere you see fit.

Haven't settled on what survey software to use? We have a great one for you right here! Sign up for a demo to hear about how SurveyMe can help you gather insights from your customers.

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Topics: Business & Marketing, Survey Strategies

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