Have you ever wondered why testimonials are always so positive? It’s because that’s what “testimonial” means: a favorable report on your work’s qualities and virtues. But if you want to have testimonials to use in promoting your writing and platform, you have to be proactive.
• Just ask. Ninety-nine percent of the time, when you ask, your former client, customer, student or reader will give you a brief testimonial cheerfully and quickly. For classes and speaking engagements, simply keep feedback forms handy. Good testimonials clarify. They illustrate. Most important, they help people understand whether or not what you have to offer might interest them.
• Keep track. Keep feelers out for what other people are saying about you. Google your name and identity (blog, website, etc.) routinely, or set up Google Alerts on google.com to do it for you and send you daily e-mail reports. This is also a great way to catch news related to your platform topic that you might otherwise miss.
• Build a file. Clips and links to what reliable sources say about you make up the second most important file for writers, right after the one of your published writing. By collecting examples of what others have said, you can take the public by the hand and lead it right to your latest buzz.