I’ll start by saying I LOVE listener and celebrity testimonials on the air. Nothing sells a brand better than a sincere, well produced story from a passionate listener or a credible celebrity. Their recommendation can be highly valuable. Listener testimonials are especially valuable, as long as they’re sincere and produced properly.
But there’s a problem. The marketing world is filled with fake testimonials. It’s become so widespread that U.S. federal laws have been passed against them.
Meanwhile, 90% of all consumers assume testimonials in marketing messages are “made up”. So when a radio station starts a listener testimonials campaign, there’s a barrier to overcome.
While the public trusts reviews for a product on Amazon, or some other non-sales, third party platform, most consumers do not trust testimonials because they see them as being in a brand’s self-interest.
In other words, there’s a difference between “reviews” and “testimonials.” How do we deal with these trust issues as programmers?