Posted by: Marty Fahncke | February 18, 2009

Be careful with your testimonials

Testimonials are the super-powers of marketing messages.

Based on over 20 years of testing and proof, I’m always telling my clients to use testimonials more often in their marketing.  Whether it’s on a TV ad, on a website, a direct mail piece, or anywhere else, compelling customer testimonials will substantially increase response rates and sales.  Guaranteed. 

(I should put some testimonials in right here just to prove my point!)

However, I just came across an article talking about some new FTC guidelines which restrict just how testimonials can be used in your marketing…particularly if you are using “cherry picked” testimonials of extreme results or best-case scenarios. 

It turns out the old “Results not typical” disclaimer may not be enough to keep you out of hot water with the FTC.

The article goes on to state:

If you don’t have clinical data that enables you to substantiate what consumers will generally achieve with your product, the FTC offers you two alternatives — get that data or stop using “success story” testimonials.

If you market products having to do with making money, losing weight, or any other “measurable” claims for success, be sure to check out the complete article. 

Click here to read:  FTC Decides “Results Not Typical” no longer good enough
 
Bottom line:  You MUST use testimonials in your marketing message…just be careful HOW you use them and which ones you use.

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