Why I don't use client testimonials........

I have many colleagues who include testimonials on their website. In the digital age, perhaps it seems usual .... but I have a different view. Testimonials may seem appealing and persuasive, but.......

  • They are actually not allowed by many professional bodies worldwide, including the UK Council for Psychotherapy and its Member Organizations.
  • A website owner is likely to publish only the positive reviews - so it's a biased sample.
  • There is really no way of demonstrating that they're genuine, without breaking the ethical principle of Confidentiality.
  • If you believe (and I do!.....) that the therapy relationship is unique with each & every client, then what one ex-client may think/say simply can't be applied to anyone else. Their experience is valid, but we *must* expect yours to be different!
  • The process of therapy can be transformative and wonderful. However, it can also be challenging in many ways. It's not always an easy ride!. The testimonials I've read seem to conveniently miss out this important point... and I'd rather not mislead my potential clients.

This brief summary is based on my own research- into the ethics of digital marketing in the psychotherapy and counselling professions.

I hope it helps to explain - I won't use testimonials, because I don't want to compromise the ethical and highly reflective approach I take to my client work.