For the use of a term testimonial in sport is sometimes used (especially football) see testimonial match.

In promotion and of advertising, a testimonial or show consists of a written or spoken statement, sometimes from a person figure, sometimes from a private citizen, extolling the virtue of some product. The term "testimonial" most commonly applies to the sales-pitches attributed to ordinary citizens, whereas "endorsement" usually applies to pitches by celebrities. See also Testify, Testimony, for historical context and etymology. Testimonials can be part of communal marketing.

Pope Leo XIII endorses "Vin Mariani", a patent medicine containing cocaine.


Measuring the use of celebrities in marketing programs

Advertisers have attempted to quantify and qualify the use of celebrities in their marketing campaigns by evaluating their awareness, appeal, and relevance to a brand's image and the celebrity's influence on consumer buying behavior.

For example, Omnicom agency Davie Brown Entertainment has created an independent index for brand marketers and advertising agencies that determines a celebrity’s ability to influence brand affinity and consumer purchase intent. According to the Wall Street Journal, the so-called " Davie-Brown Index" will "enable advertisers and ad-agency personnel to determine if a particular public figure will motivate consumers who see them in an ad to purchase the product advertised."

Celebrity endorsements have proven very successful in China where, due to increasing consumerism, it is considered a status symbol to purchase an endorsed product. On August 1, 2007 laws were passed banning healthcare professionals and public figures such as movie stars or pop singers from appearing in advertisements for drugs or nutritional supplements. A spokesperson stated: "A celebrity appearing in drug advertising is more likely to mislead consumers, therefore, the state must consider controlling medical advertisements and strengthen the management of national celebrities appearing in medical advertisements."

Non-Celebrity Testimonials

Testimonials from customers (who are not famous) have been effectively used in marketing for as long as marketing existed. A sort of 'formal word of mouth testimony' that a past or current customer will present to a business owner and the business will in turn use this customers praise as a testimonial with the intent of marketing and/or building trust. While testimonials are incredibly effective when believed true, the challenge now lay in having the reader believe the testimonials... All that being said, testimonials, reviews and case studies are still considered by most marketing experts to be the most effective means of marketing and gaining brand trust by small and medium sized businesses.

The Legality of Testimonials

The FTC (Federal Trade Commission) in fact found that in US businesses an alarming number of testimonials were in fact fictitious and misleading that in Dec of 2009 they introduced a new set of rules governing testimonials. (They have set up an FAQ about this on their website here.) In essence it is now illegal to use testimonials that "...mislead consumers and affect consumers' behavior or decisions about the product or service." However, despite new regulations, online consumers often view testimonials with a high degree of skepticism. Companies from the private sector have begun to offer testimonial verification services to help consumers verify the authenticity of displayed testimonials.

External links

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • testimonial — TESTIMONIÁL, Ă, testimoniali, e, adj. (Rar) Care se face prin martori, care se bazează pe o mărturie. [pr.: ni al] – Din fr. testimonial, lat. testimonialis. Trimis de ana zecheru, 13.09.2007. Sursa: DEX 98  testimoniál adj. m. (sil. ni al), pl …   Dicționar Român

  • testimonial — tes‧ti‧mo‧ni‧al [ˌtestˈməʊniəl ǁ ˈmoʊ ] noun [countable] 1. MARKETING a statement about the quality or value of a product, especially one made by a respected or famous person as part of an advertisement: • The ads feature testimonials from car… …   Financial and business terms

  • Testimonial — Voir « testimonial » sur le Wiktionnaire …   Wikipédia en Français

  • testimonial — testimonial, iale, iaux [ tɛstimɔnjal, jo ] adj. • 1274; lat. testimonialis, de testimonium → témoin ♦ Dr. Preuve testimoniale, qui repose sur des témoignages. ● testimonial nom masculin Annonce publicitaire fondée sur le témoignage d une ou… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • testimonial — adjetivo 1. Que tiene valor de testimonio: presencia testimonial, prueba testimonial …   Diccionario Salamanca de la Lengua Española

  • Testimonial — Tes ti*mo ni*al, n. [Cf. OF. testimoniale, LL. testimonialis, L. testimoniales (sc. litter[ae]). See {Testimonial}, a.] 1. A writing or certificate which bears testimony in favor of one s character, good conduct, ability, etc., or of the value of …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Testimonial — Tes ti*mo ni*al, a. [L. testimonialis: cf. F. testimonial.] Relating to, or containing, testimony. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • testimonial — (adj.) early 15c., of or pertaining to testimony, in letters testimonial from M.Fr. lettres testimoniaulx, from L. litteræ testimoniales, from testimonium (see TESTIMONY (Cf. testimony)). The noun meaning writing testifying to one s qualification …   Etymology dictionary

  • testimonial — index affirmation, deposition, monument, recommendation, remembrance (commemoration), reminder, respect …   Law dictionary

  • testimonial — testimonial, ale (tè sti mo ni al, a l ) adj. Qui atteste, prouve.    Preuves testimoniales, preuves par témoins. •   J ajouterai que les preuves [de noblesse] de Rosen ne furent que testimoniales, SAINT SIMON 143, 88.    Lettres testimoniales,… …   Dictionnaire de la Langue Française d'Émile Littré

  • testimonial — n recommendation, *credential, character, reference Analogous words: commendation (see corresponding verb at COMMEND): approval, endorsement (see corresponding verbs at APPROVE) …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

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