I know you’re honest and only speak (and publish) the truth. You don’t fudge numbers, embellish facts, or exaggerate results.
At least not intentionally.
But guess what? All of your efforts to tell the whole truth and nothing but the truth may be for naught if the truth you tell doesn’t appear to be true.
There’s even a word for it: verisimilitude, meaning “the appearance of truth”. When it comes to marketing, appearance is everything.
I’ve seen a lot of new books lately, by unknown authors, that have 40 four- or five-star reviews within a few days of publication. It doesn’t take a genius to see that these reviews are predominately fake, written by paid reviewers who haven’t read the book.
But even if every one of these reviews were real and honestly earned, many would doubt their veracity because there are too many, too fast and because they seem too good to be true.
Lesson: don’t fear negative reviews. If you’re getting mostly positive reviews for your practice (or books), the occasional less-than-positive review actually helps you because it makes the sum of your reviews more believable.
Lesson: look at your presentations and written materials with the eye of a prospective client. If something looks too good to be true, you need to do something about it. If you’re reporting great results in a case, for example, explain why and how you got those results (and that they aren’t typical).
In the short term, fake reviews can work. Just like fake news, they’ll fool enough people to get some short term results. In the long run, however, the truth–or the lack of verisimilitude–catches up with them.
How to write content that brings in more clients