«Return to Blog List Share Your Promo Plan with Customers
When you’re trying to get customers to agree to be featured in a customer story, details sell — especially details about how the customer will gain exposure too.
I was on a brainstorming call this morning with a client that’s trying to feature several big-name customers in case studies.
The question: How does the client approach each of these customers in a way that will maximize the outcome? First, how do you encourage the customer to agree? And second, how do we get the company to agree to publicizing details that will make the story stronger?
Giving customers a clear plan for how you will leverage a customer story is key here. With representatives from sales, marketing and PR on this call, we were able to come up with all the ways that the case study will be used. In turn, the company can provide an overview to the client regarding how it will be used in sales opportunities, for marketing activities like trade shows, and pitched to specific publications.
Share this joint promotional plan with the end customer, and ideally the customer’s own PR team beforehand.
It takes some advance planning and prep, but the end result is worth it: a public case study featured a well-known company by name.
Maybe I’ve just been lucky, but I’ve never had a customer (my client’s customer, to avoid confusion) turn down the opportunity to be the subject of a case study that will cast the company in a positive light.
But the way I’ve gone about it has been, as you mention here, to get the company’s PR department involved from the very beginning.
Even when the company has a strict policy against giving interviews, the PR dept can override the policy. Will my lucky streak hold? I don’t know.
You have been lucky! Engaging PR from the start is certainly the best approach. PR is looking for opportunities, while legal is looking to avoid opportunities, it seems. With the biggest featured customers, I have found that sometimes even PR doesn’t have enough power to override legal and higher-ups. Maybe they’re worried that every vendor will ask for a case, or that they are giving away competitive secrets. Whatever the reason, it’s frustrating. Hope your lucky streak continues!