The Anatomy of a Killer Testimonial Video for Brands

"Hey guys! Today I wanted to talk to you about one of my favorite things EVER!"

Maria Topor

by Maria Topor

· 11 min read

"Hey guys! Today I wanted to talk to you about one of my favorite things EVER!"

👆 If you’ve ever heard a phrase like this, chances are you were about to watch a testimonial video.

Now, you may be tempted to think testimonial videos are done so often that you don’t need them. After all, if everyone’s doing them, what are your chances of standing out?

But you do need them, we promise. In today’s post, we’ll help explain why (plus give you some advice on how to get top-notch testimonial videos for your brand!)

But first, let’s talk about what a testimonial video is. (Contrary to popular belief, it’s not scripted)

What are customer testimonial videos?

I know, I know–if you’ve been in digital marketing for long, you’re probably rolling your eyes and thinking, “Is THIS all they’re talking about?”

It’s not. But if you’re new to UGC, we wanted to catch you up to speed.

A testimonial video is a video where someone shares their real experience with your brand or products.

It’s the video equivalent of a written testimonial (like on Google or TrustPilot), where someone talks about using your products. If you’re having trouble picturing this, don’t worry–we have some examples for you later in this article!

But first, let’s talk about why this is a great thing for your brand.

Why do brands get testimonial videos, and why do buyers trust them?

The main goal of getting client testimonial videos for your brand is to help inspire trust in your brand.

If people don’t trust you, they won’t buy from you. And, statistically speaking, people are WAY more likely to trust another consumer than they are to trust your brand.

This is why brands use testimonials on their websites, product pages, and in their paid advertising efforts. They want to make it SUPER EASY for potential buyers to see other, real people who are happy after buying your product. After all, those testimonials imply they might be just as happy if they hit that buy button!

If you’re not convinced, think about what YOU do if you’re about to make a purchase. What’s the first thing you check?

Right. The testimonials or reviews.

Even if it’s not the *first* thing you check, you’re going to look them up before you buy.

Do you see how powerful this is?

Buyers trust other people just like them. They read their words or see their happy faces and think, “I want to experience that, too!”

It’s human psychology, plain and simple. You might read other explanations about why these videos work, too–but they all come down to trust and our basic desire to be happy.

What are some examples of testimonial videos?

We’re glad you asked! Here are some great example testimonial videos from brands we worked with and our very own creators.


Why this video works: Eye-catching graphics, great facial expressions, and a clear (and short!) explanation of how Redwigwam is making his life better. It’s no wonder this video got such a great response!

Remy Sleep

Why this video works: Natural delivery, crystal-clear audio, great product staging, and use examples. Also–she starts with a great hook! We can see why Remy Sleep got amazing results from this campaign!

Example #3

Why this video works:

Example #4

Why this video works:

Example #5

Why this video works:

How to write a brief for the perfect testimonial video–with examples!

A word before we begin: We don’t believe in scripting testimonial videos.

After all, a perfect testimonial video should reflect the real opinion of a customer. For example–the video from Redwigwam was perfect because it didn’t have a script: It’s literally what they wanted to say after interacting with our product.

And guess what? When you hear their digital marketing manager talking about the results from this content, she’s thrilled with the results. She calls it “brilliant.”

We’re not saying this to brag. We’re saying this because we want you to understand that the best testimonial videos don’t come from a script or brief. They’re at their most brilliant when they come from the experience someone had with your product.

When a customer takes the time to tell everyone how good something is, that’s where you’re going to see results.

However, we know that’s not always the case (or that you may want to test certain phrases or hooks to see if they resonate with your audience). So just in case, here’s how to write a brief for a testimonial video about your product:

Context: Start here

Give your creators some context about your campaign and goals. After all, they can’t help you reach your goals if they don’t know what they are.

To help you visualize this, pretend we’re trying to write a brief together about a skincare line that prevents acne.

Think about our goals for the campaign: Would we want to show how effective our serums are at preventing clogged pores? Show what makes our brand different from others on the market? Show people that it’s possible to love their skin again? Sell more of a particular product?

Whatever our end goals are for the campaign, we’d want to give our creators that context.

Video intro

Duration: Up to 5 seconds.

The video intro is the first few seconds of the video–literally. It can take up to 5 seconds.

Why so short? This is the time you have to make people want to keep watching.

Often, marketers will call this the “hook,” and you can either let the creator come up with the hook or try to influence it a bit.

If you leave it up to the creator, you’re going to get whatever intro they decide is best–and this will *probably* be different with each creator. (Although you can check their portfolio to see the hooks they normally use).

If you’d rather influence this a bit, you can have them ask a pressing question in the intro. Sticking with our skincare brand example, we might have them ask something like, “Tired of pimples and acne popping up at the WORST times?”

You can also give creators some hook options to choose from.

But our honest opinion? If the creator is good, let them freestyle it. It’s going to make the testimonial much more authentic.

Body of the video

Duration: Around 20 seconds

If the intro or hook gets people’s attention, the body gets them information. The body of the video takes the most time–so if you’re going for a 30-second video, it might be around 20 seconds.

So, what should the creator say here?

One approach is to give them 3 or 4 features they can talk about and let them pick. Obviously, these will be based on your product’s benefits, so you may have to sit down and think about this–but probably, you know them as well as you know your name.

For our imaginary acne-preventing skincare product line, this might look something like:

  • Helps prevent breakouts before they start
  • Reduces acne and oily skin
  • Unclogs pores and balances your skin tone, fast
  • Dermatologist approved

(If you’d like to see an example of a brand doing this, you can check out Clear Skin Care–click the “benefits” tab to see how they describe their product.)

However, you know us: We’re always going to advocate for letting the creator talk about their experience. In our opinion (and our experience backs this up), letting people speak for themselves gives you better results, especially if they had a good experience.

Also, on top of this, even when you provide some options as talking points, maybe whoever creates the video didn’t experience those benefits, see our point?

But, you never know! They might have experienced some new benefits that you never knew your brand had. 😉

End of the video or call to action

Duration: Up to 5 seconds

The last line of the video is usually a call to action. By the time you get here, people *should* be convinced that they want to check out your product. Calls to action are best when they’re short and direct.

Finishing out our skincare product example, a great call to action for a video might be something like this:

  • “Try it for yourself using the link below!”
  • “Check out their website to get your first starter pack for only $30!”
  • “Head to [webisite] and use the code ‘READY’ to get free shipping on your first order.”

Basically, you want the call to action to leave NO question about how they get your product–and it’s even better if you can give them a compelling reason to check it out before they scroll onto the next post.

Like all the other elements, you can leave the call to action up to the creator. But if you have one that’s worked in other ad campaigns, it’s okay to let them know about it.

Testimonial video brief examples

We realize this can *sound* simple, but it can be intimidating to start typing out a brief if you’ve never done it before. So if you’re looking for some examples, we’ve got you.

These examples come from our team–together, we have over 10 years of experience in the UGC space, so we’ve seen a LOT of creative testimonial videos. We know what tends to work and what doesn’t. So we’ve collected examples we’d use if we were running testimonial videos for our own brand.

If you’re struggling to create hooks or calls to action, pay special attention to the examples in the doc–those should give you some inspiration to draw on!

How can I get testimonial videos?

If you’ve researched getting testimonial videos, you’ve probably come across advice like, “Offer incentives!” or “Set up alerts to see when people are talking about your brand!”

Those tips might work for big brands that already have a lot of buzz.

But what if you’re not that big? What if you need testimonial videos, but no one’s making them? Should you just settle for employee testimonial videos?

We’ve been hinting at it throughout this article, but you don’t have to wait. You can send your products to content creators and have them record their honest reactions, all for a very affordable price.

How? With Clip.

At Clip, you’ll get best-in-class UGC (including testimonial videos!) for a fraction of what you’d pay at other companies. Plus, our creators focus on making performance-driven content so you can get the best ROI on every campaign.

Interested? Get started with Clip today!

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