How to use clients testimonials to grow your coaching business

How to use coaching testimonials to grow your coaching business

With more and more people and companies investing in coaching and personal development services, the projections are crazy. As of 2023, the global coaching industry keeps growing insanely and is expected to be worth $20 billion, with about 93,000 coaches worldwide. That is over a 33% increase in the past few years. (statistics from ICF Global Coaching) This means there is definitely a place for you in this industry, but it is competitive and you need to put all odds on your side if you want your coaching business to be successful and bring you money. Coaching testimonials are a proven way to grow your credibility and the trust of your future clients so you can close deals with them. Strong testimonials showcasing transformative results will also allow you to work with high-end clients and charge more for your coaching services. Testimonials are a simple but sure way to differentiate from the competition and impact decision-making.

A few numbers to prove the value of social proof and testimonials in particular:

  • 93% of consumers say they are influenced by online reviews for their purchase decisions. (source)
  • 46% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. (source
  • Testimonials can increase conversions on sales pages by 34%. (source)
OK, so you see the power of social proof and more particularly testimonials. Today, I will show you how to collect incredible testimonials from coaching clients and make the most of them, using them in various places.

1. How to collect valuable coaching testimonials

Testimonials can play such an important part in your business growth, you want to make sure you don’t leave anything to chance and have a clear process.

Simply asking a client to send you a review is the risk of receiving a poor testimonial, even though they might be thrilled about your work.

This is why it is very important to guide your clients so they send you a valuable testimonial that will help convert other clients and drive sales.

And the easiest way to do this is to create a questionnaire you will send to your client directly. Keep it short enough to not discourage them (maximum 8 questions and 5-8 minutes to answer). I’ll guide you a bit below about the questions you need to include in your questionnaire.

But first, let’s see… where to collect your coaching reviews.

You can easily create a questionnaire online. A few websites you can use for this include Google Forms (free), Typeform, or Trust (payable, possible integrations on your website, verified).

You can also ask them to leave a LinkedIn recommendation directly on your profile profile or a review on your Facebook page or your Google Business listing. In such cases, make sure you send them the direct link to the page.

If needed, you can also create an automated email asking for a testimonial and incorporating all the above information.

2. What to ask in your testimonial questionnaire

Focus on your clients’ results. If they can give you your numbers, go for it! Avoid closed-ended questions, that will just give you a yes or no. Open-ended questions are your friends. They will assure each testimonial you receive is true, genuine, different from the others, and trustworthy. Ask for video testimonials if possible. Videos are a great way to build trust and convince future clients. Your testimonials need to have content that actually drives sales. This is why you must create a process that will guide your client to serve you well. Here is a list of questions you need in your testimonial questionnaire:
  • Present yourself briefly and tell us why you were searching for a coach.
  • What specific benefits did you gain from your coaching sessions with me? (Please be as specific as possible with the results)
  • What’s the number one thing you’ve learned during coaching?
  • What changed in your life since you started the coaching sessions?
  • Which 3 words best describe your coaching experience?
  • Are you satisfied with your return on investment?
  • From 1-10, how would you rate my coaching service?
  • Did you have any reservations before signing up with me? Why?
  • Would you recommend my coaching service? Why?

You can also ask for authorization to display the full name and profession of your clients or the details that will show they are genuine and that will help talk to your niche in particular. If you help overwhelmed moms, it is more valuable if you get a testimonial from Marion, mother of 2, than Samuel, CEO of a company.

3. When to ask a client for a testimonial

If you do private coaching, you can ask for a review once your 1:1 coaching is finished or just after a big win.

If you are doing group coaching, ask for a testimonial at the of the coaching.

If you have an online coaching program, make sure you have an automated review request email sent when you estimate it is the smartest. When would usually people get the most out of your program?

You can also request a testimonial after your powerful freebies were sent or after people joined a masterclass with you.

Basically, all opportunities need to be considered. Take a few minutes to write down the process for each of your products/services for your business.

How to use clients' testimonials to grow your coaching business

4. Where to use coaching clients’ testimonials

Don’t be shy … Display your testimonials everywhere! They should be seen:
  • on your website (homepage, service, about, sales page, testimonial page if you have a lot)
  • on Instagram (stories, posts, ask clients to tag you, create a testimonial highlight to save all of them)
  • on LinkedIn (request a recommendation/post)
  • on your Facebook page
  • in your newsletters
  • in your webinars
  • in your ads
  • in your marketing materials (flyers, posters, banners)
  • on your YouTube channel
  • on Pinterest
  • in your blog posts
Really, the more the merrier!

5. How to maximize your chances of receiving outstanding testimonials

  1. provide results.
  2. follow up with your clients.
  3. make them feel heard, and listened to. Show you care.
  4. go the extra mile. Provide impeccable customer care!
  5. stick to your niche. Choose clients who reflect your target audience because you need to show prospects you have experience in your niche.
  6. make things easy for your clients. If they prefer to jump to send you an email or answer you on zoom, just go with the flow.

6. How to collect testimonials as a new coach

As a novice, you might not yet have clients. But you need to keep in mind that testimonials are extremely valuable and will help you grow faster.

I don’t recommend working for free, as the level of commitment of the person in front of you will be much lower and therefore your results as well. However, you can propose a very low fee to someone that would need your services, in exchange for a testimonial. (Make this clear from the start).

Try to figure out what could be the most transformative project that wouldn’t be too time-consuming for you so you can propose this to people around you. Their results will definitely serve your testimonial section!

Transformative coaching reviews can really be a game-changer for your coaching business, don’t underestimate this part. Come prepared!

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