Capturing the Voice of the Customer at Events

Our team recently spent a week in Washington D.C. to support all the advocacy activities for one of our clients at their annual industry conference. The event is highly attended by our client’s most enthusiastic supporters, so our team is onsite every year to capture customers’ excitement and passion through interviews and video testimonials and leverage the occasion as an opportunity to recognize the involvement of current advocates and recruit new members to the advocacy program.

In the months leading up to the conference, our advocacy team is always diligently at work identifying customer advocates attending the event and working with account owners to determine the best customer stories to feature in case studies and videos. By the time the conference begins, our materials creation team has a full schedule of customer interviews to conduct.

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Our film crew is expert at transforming all types of spaces into professional pop-up film studios. After years of working together to create reference material in the customer voice, the team has skillfully mastered the craft of making the proverbial “hot seat” as comfortable as can be for interviewees. They excel at helping customers thrive in front of the camera and are pros at conducting open-ended interviews that lead to passionate discussions about customers’ experience and success with our client’s solutions.

The conference brings together customers from around the globe, making the event an efficient and cost-effective opportunity to capture testimonials and promote the advocacy program. Every day of the conference, our team films several customer interviews, each of which serves as the source material for a case study and a video. Our conversations with customers also can be leveraged to craft thought-leadership blogs and to gather background information for award nominations and other engagements through the advocacy program.

Are you bringing all your biggest supporters together for a conference, user group or other customer-centric event? Let us know if your organization is interested in capturing customer testimonials during the event or in consultations on how best to leverage the engagement to promote your advocacy program!

Summer Changes Begin

Some staffing changes are ahead for summer. We have a master’s student in communications joining us for the summer. She’ll be writing case studies and helping with social media. Several of our clients have communities for their advocates and we’re involved with both initiating and maintaining those communities. Lots of interesting updates to post and we’re seeing significant participation both from our client’s employees and their customers. With a few new client agreements that focus heavily on writing we’ll certainly keep her busy! We will also have an intern from one of our clients join the team. While the company is headquartered here in the Bay Area, we are fully responsible for their customer advocacy program. Our client decided it was best to locate their intern with us, in fact their interviews were here in our building. We can provide the necessary training and support, which can be substantial for an undergrad in their first true business role. He will have trips to headquarters to meet with others and participate in activities planned for the intern program overall, but home base will be with us. As we’ve hired several team members directly after their graduation.

Nothing like an intern or recent graduate to remind you to explain acronyms (even ones like EMEA or COO), clearly describe ‘business casual’ attire, and go over all sorts of other general business topics we otherwise take for granted!

Case studies - your customers tell your story best!

The success of your existing customers is a powerful way to tell your story to potential customers. Case studies leverage your past successes and validate the effectiveness of your products and services through an objective voice, in a way your other marketing pieces cannot.  Even B2B executives looking at the most complex solutions are influenced by the opinion of their trusted peers.  Case studies give a voice to your customers to enable this positive influencing to occur naturally. Here at Referential, Inc. we’ve seen a recent surge in demand for case studies from our clients.  We are able to leverage both engineering and business expertise to fully understand the business value our clients’ products and services deliver.  We know the right questions to ask to uncover quantifiable benefits and create compelling stories to help accelerate purchase decisions by your prospects.

Need a case study?  Give us a call!

Case Studies - A Record!

Case studies, success stories, or whatever your favorite term, are common components of customer reference programs.  We write a lot of them.  Some of our clients have unique style guides, otherwise our writing follows AP rules.  Believe it or not we had a discussion about comma placement at lunch.  Do you put a comma before ‘but’ in a sentence?   We were divided on that one.  This week is a record for us.  The largest number of case studies approved for publication ever.   And we’re only at Thursday!  They’re not easy to write.  You need to tell an engaging story where the customer gets to shine, while at the same time our client’s key value add is the focus.  Review cycles are always interesting too as they include not only our client but their customer too.  From the beginning of the process to case study publication can be as short as 2 weeks, though some take much longer.

Our depth of understanding of our client’s offerings is key.  We know the business value they bring so we’re able to ask their customers the right questions to get powerful quotes and strong supporting proof points.  And we have great writers!

It will be interesting to see how long this record stands!