Thursday, 25 June 2009

Harder, better, faster, stronger – 6 ways to increase ROI metrics in your case studies

One of the hottest topics for customer reference professionals; over the years we have found several tactics worth considering:

1) Create case studies later
If it’s business outcomes you seek the solution has to have had an impact on the business. Do the press release then wait until you have a story worth telling
2) Establish ground rules and expectations up-front
Make it clear to the customer that you will be seeking metrics. You can decide how to proceed based on the response however the customer must still feel valued if you decide not to proceed
3) Use writers with a journalistic background
Journalists get to the root of the story, asking the same question from different perspectives in order to get the required result. Similar to ‘is it safe’ in Marathon Man but in a positive way!
4) Consider independent case study endorsement
Sometimes a respected third party can add value; companies open up to independent analyst firms. They can validate and add weight to case studies
5) Leverage market data
Give the customer a starting point using industry or product benchmarks rather than just asking for ‘metrics’
6) Limited-use sign-off
Consider asking for a ‘one-to-one sales environment only’ legal release – i.e. not for marketing use. Customers release more information when it’s not used by the press or for brochures/adverts/events. Marketing can be frightening!

2 comments:

Sally said...

Also got to know why you want to do the case study in the first place! What purpose does it serve in the sales or marketing cycle!!

compel01 said...

Nice post reference geeks!

I've got limited-use signoff on my mind this week as the answer to saving a case study where the customer's PR dept got scared at the last minute.

Casey