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Casey Hibbard

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Top Stories by Casey Hibbard

In the discussion about customer case studies, one question comes up over and over: How long does it take to get a case study done? How many days or weeks are needed to get a completed, approved customer story in hand and ready to use? Unfortunately, the answer isn’t that easy. On average, I would say about one month. BUT, it really depends on the part of the process that makes customer stories different from other marketing projects – the review and approval phase. From the time you interview the customer to completing the draft, video or audio might be a couple of weeks. Then, how long is it in the customer’s court? I’ve seen customers approve stories the same day they receive them. But I’ve also seen them make the rounds of customer review for months. Often, it depends on the size of the featured customer’s organization. Generally, the larger the company, the l... (more)

Three Ways to Get Nervous Prospects off the Fence

I'm trying to make a decision. I keep getting emails from a company with an attractive offer. They say that the marketing service they offer will help me grow my business. But everyone says that. How do I know that putting some of my small marketing budget toward their services will actually pay off? The truth is, I can't know for sure. Unfortunately, I don't know anyone personally who uses the company's services. And beyond a few vague testimonials, the company doesn't have any stories of other customers' successes. Hence, I'm still on the fence. When prospects are looking for... (more)

Seven Ways to Encourage Customers to Be Case Studies

From startups to global enterprises, every company struggles at times with getting customers to go on record. Here are some ideas in practice at companies today for encouraging customers to be featured:  1.    Access and involvement-Surprisingly, the #1 thing customers want is access and involvement-access to your execs and involvement in your product/service roadmap. Generate ways for your top customers to interact with your organization on a deeper level. 2.    Co-marketing campaigns-Create a few co-marketing campaigns for the customers you most want to feature. The focus: Ho... (more)

Will Customers Nominate Themselves as Stories?

If asked, will customers submit themselves as possible case study or success story candidates?  From consumer-products companies to B2B to nonprofit organizations, many now actively solicit stories with self-service “Share Your Story” links on their Web sites. Apple created a link for this soon after the release of its wildly popular iPhone. FileMaker software includes a link to “Tell us your story.” Girl Scouts of the USA asks former members to share their experiences for its alumnae program. And Toyota Motor Sales gather owners' stories and gets usage permission through an o... (more)

A Winning Strategy for Landing Big-Name Customer Stories

I'm a big proponent of what I call "win-win storytelling" in customer case studies and success stories. The company creating the customer story has to benefit, as does the featured customer. The key - especially for landing big-name customers for customer stories - is finding what motivates each customer (on an individual, departmental or company level). Simply reminding the customer they receive free publicity may not be enough. In just the past two weeks, I've worked on several stories with interesting customer motivators behind them: -       A civil engineer is enthusiastic a... (more)