I recently had the pleasure of receiving outstanding testimonials for several projects I had completed. Yay! Even in this age of video, it was easier for me and more convenient for the client, I felt, to e-mail me written comments than for me to visit them in person and interview them for a video testimonial, although I realized I was sacrificing a "You Tube" moment in doing so, and relying on the fact that people will look on the testimonials tab on my web site, carriefreelance.com, if they want refererences. When it came to length, I asked for 1-2 paragraphs and ended up with longer comments, about 3-4 paragraphs, which matched some prior references I had already received.
When I started researching other web sites online and other businesses to see how they handled the testimonial issue, I found a lot of variety, including testimonials in quotes all over the home page, a separate link for video testimonials, and on mediabistro.com, for example, simple written quotes with the name of the author at the end and a photo of the writer. In some cases there were very detailed case studies, which got a bit long at times. In a workshop I attended today, the speaker suggested that if you as a business had a great success story, you should document it as a case study, and doing it on video is particularly effective.
How have you handled testimonials and what have you found to be most effective? Do you think video/You Tube is necessarily the best method, or is the written format just as good in some cases? Also, what do you do when you know you did a great job for your client but they continue to procrastinate and not send in the testimonial?