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dlcmagic
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I send out evaluation letters after my shows. Do I have to get permission from someone before I use their comments in my brochure ?
Dave
Donald Dunphy
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David -

I don't use evaluation forms to ask for testimonials. I do it a different way.

However, I've listened to other performers talk about how they use the evaluation form. Right after the part where they ask for feedback, either with closed ended questions, or open ended questions, they have a simple question.

"Can we quote you on our website / in our promotional materials? Y / N"

- Donald
Donald Dunphy is a Victoria Magician, British Columbia, Canada.
Skip Way
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Dave, you have to ask yourself if you're willing to gamble the cost of a complete run of color brochures on the chance that one of your testimonials won't insist, for whatever paranoid or personal reason, that you remove their comments. If you don't have some form of release, you may have no legal choice but to pull and reprint the entire lot.
How you leave others feeling after an Experience with you becomes your Trademark.

Magic Youth Raleigh - RaleighMagicClub.org
dlcmagic
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Thank you guys. I appreciate the help. I have inserted a release section on the form.
Decomposed
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I use initials sometimes instead of the entire names.
Frank Douglas
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Dave just send the client a follow up letter/email asking for their testimonial and let them know that you might be using it for promotional purposes; using their initials.

If they liked the show a lot of them will not hesitate to drop you a line.

Cheers
Frank
Donald Dunphy
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Using initials instead of the customer's name, is much weaker. Those testimonials come across as artificial. People look for a name, even if they don't know the person. Using your customer's first and last name along with their testimonial will be stronger.

If the customer really was endorsing your product / service, they would not be ashamed to have their identity known.

- Donald
Donald Dunphy is a Victoria Magician, British Columbia, Canada.
John Martin
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Quote:
Using initials instead of the customer's name, is much weaker.

Based on what research?

I use first names and last name initials on my site, as you know Smile, and haven't noticed a problem. The plus' are that I don't have to expressly ask to use them, don't need to get anything in writing and the benefits to the testimonial giver is that they don't get pestered with unwanted inquiries about my services. I would like to think that IF you ask for a testimnial it would be to use to market your show, "Would you say something nice about my show so I can let others know what you thought about it???". Otherwise it would be nothing more then to feed you ego.

John
Jay Jennings
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Quote:
On 2010-07-28 18:11, John1964 wrote:
Quote:
Using initials instead of the customer's name, is much weaker.

Based on what research?


A lot of marketing is the result of stringent testing, and that's one thing that's been tested to death. Full names do better than initials. Add the person's location and it does better. Add their phone number and it does even better.

Quote:
I use first names and last name initials on my site, as you know Smile, and haven't noticed a problem.


Have you split-tested using initials vs full names? Because of your comment I'd assume not, so you're basing your marketing on guessing what works. if you're not going to do your own testing, at least go with the tested results that have been found to work best.

Quote:
The plus' are that I don't have to expressly ask to use them, don't need to get anything in writing and the benefits to the testimonial giver is that they don't get pestered with unwanted inquiries about my services.


If you are using something someone wrote without their permission, you are in violation of copyright. When they write it they have an automatic copyright and while they probably wouldn't sue you over it, you *are* leaving a gap where someone can poke you with a sharp stick if they so desire.

Jay Jennings
John Martin
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Let's start at the end...
Quote:
If you are using something someone wrote without their permission, you are in violation of copyright. When they write it they have an automatic copyright and while they probably wouldn't sue you over it, you *are* leaving a gap where someone can poke you with a sharp stick if they so desire.


You'll want to check your copyright law, specifically section 107 which deals with fair use. This section lays out what may be considered fair use of copyrighted works that may be reproduced. Some of which include teaching, comment, news reporting, reasearch and criticism. In 1961 the Report of the Register of Copyrights on the General Revision of the U.S. Copyright Law lays out what the court considers fair use:
Quote:
“quotation of excerpts in a review or criticism for purposes of illustration or comment; quotation of short passages in a scholarly or technical work, for illustration or clarification of the author’s observations; use in a parody of some of the content of the work parodied; summary of an address or article, with brief quotations, in a news report; reproduction by a library of a portion of a work to replace part of a damaged copy; reproduction by a teacher or student of a small part of a work to illustrate a lesson; reproduction of a work in legislative or judicial proceedings or reports; incidental and fortuitous reproduction, in a newsreel or broadcast, of a work located in the scene of an event being reported.”

I wouldn't worry about the sharp stick. Besides they offered the testimonial, obviously, at least to me, to be used.

Quote:
Have you split-tested using initials vs full names? Because of your comment I'd assume not, so you're basing your marketing on guessing what works. if you're not going to do your own testing, at least go with the tested results that have been found to work best.

Short answer, no. I see no need. I'm not basing my marketing on anything more then what I want to do and achieve. If it works how can it be wrong?

Quote:
A lot of marketing is the result of stringent testing, and that's one thing that's been tested to death. Full names do better than initials. Add the person's location and it does better. Add their phone number and it does even better.


That's great!!! Let see a report/essay (by a reputable source) that says so. Just because you say it's so.....doesn't make it so. To many posts don't back up the comments made. Let SEE the reaserch.

John
Benji Bruce
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The most effective testimonials are video testimonials. Actually seeing someone rave about you and expressing their emotions will trump a written testimonial all the time.

When I get written tesitmonials...I NEVER just put their name. I will always put their name and a company name or just the company name. When seeing a written testimonial by Bryan Smith, I think "hmm who are you..." But if I see a testimonial from -Microsoft- then I'm way more impressed (even if it is by Bryan Smith)

Above all, video testimonials are the way to go. And I always get them right after I perform.
John Martin
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I think the video testimonials are the best. I am also quite surprised at how easy they are to obtain. Furthermore the performance and excitement are fresh in their minds and more than not this translates into a glowing endorsement.

John
Tim Zager
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Quote:

A lot of marketing is the result of stringent testing, and that's one thing that's been tested to death.


By who? And "a lot of marketers" is not really an answer. I would love to see those research numbers.

Quote:
Have you split-tested using initials vs full names? Because of your comment I'd assume not, so you're basing your marketing on guessing what works. if you're not going to do your own testing, at least go with the tested results that have been found to work best.


Exactly! Split testing is the only real way to know your own results. Again, I have yet to see anyone ever show the supposed research done. Seems info just gets passed from one marketer to the next to the next without any valid originating source.
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Jay Jennings
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Quote:
On 2010-07-28 21:55, John1964 wrote:
Quote:
Have you split-tested using initials vs full names? Because of your comment I'd assume not, so you're basing your marketing on guessing what works. if you're not going to do your own testing, at least go with the tested results that have been found to work best.

Short answer, no. I see no need. I'm not basing my marketing on anything more then what I want to do and achieve. If it works how can it be wrong?


Maybe it works -- but maybe it could work *better* by tweaking things. That's what testing and tracking does, gives you a baseline you can work from. Some things don't make any difference, but I'd bet initials vs full names on a testimonial is something that would. Since you don't think the copyright issue is something to worry about (and I would agree), why aren't you going ahead and using the full name?

Quote:
Quote:
A lot of marketing is the result of stringent testing, and that's one thing that's been tested to death. Full names do better than initials. Add the person's location and it does better. Add their phone number and it does even better.


That's great!!! Let see a report/essay (by a reputable source) that says so. Just because you say it's so.....doesn't make it so. To many posts don't back up the comments made. Let SEE the reaserch.


Your "That's great!!!" is such a cheap shot. I don't care if your website converts more lookers into bookers. You can take what I say as a starting point or just disregard it -- it doesn't matter to me whether you believe it or not. Read some direct marketing books and do your own research.

Jay Jennings
Jay Jennings
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Quote:
Quote:
Have you split-tested using initials vs full names? Because of your comment I'd assume not, so you're basing your marketing on guessing what works. if you're not going to do your own testing, at least go with the tested results that have been found to work best.


Exactly! Split testing is the only real way to know your own results. Again, I have yet to see anyone ever show the supposed research done. Seems info just gets passed from one marketer to the next to the next without any valid originating source.


I haven't split-tested that exact scenario (full names vs initials) because the people who wrote that info are experienced direct marketers who have done this stuff for decades. But I have tested tons of other things.

Here are exact numbers based on two split tests I performed (actually, 3 -- I duplicated one a year later and got the same result):

Does a testimonial by a "nobody" make a difference on an opt-in page?

Page without testimonial: 10.37% opt-in rate.
Page with testimonial: 14.40% opt-in rate.

By adding a testimonial from a non-famous person ( a "nobody") I got 4 more opt-ins per 100 visitors. Haven't tested that vs a "known" person yet.

Does an active link under a testimonial name affect sales?

Page with live links: 3.2% conversion rate.
Page without live links: 4.2% conversion rate.

Even though the live links opened a new window, they were decreasing sales by a full percentage point.

I don't have exact numbers here but I've also tested testimonials with pictures vs without (with wins, hands down) and text testimonials vs text+audio testimonials (adding audio wins).

Jay Jennings
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