If you work hard to keep a flow of new clients and customers coming in it may be time to look at how current customers and clients can make your job easier.
Don't worry. You don't have to hire clients onto your sales and marketing team. This is simply a matter of strategic storytelling.
Once you know what kind of story you're looking for, you can put other peoples' words to work in your marketing and let your happy customers do some selling for you.
CRAFT & REPEAT A CLEAR, COMPELLING BRAND STORY
Good marketing is all about good stories
Humans are wired for story. Which is why story is the optimal format for communicating the value of what you do. To do great marketing you need two kinds of stories and they must be connected:
Your case studies are stories that sell
Case studies are social proof. They're evidence that your brand delivers what you promise.
The evidence of social proof carries great weight with your potential customer because distinct what you have to say about the results you deliver, these stories come from people very much like them--people who were recently standing in their shoes, struggling with what they're struggling with right now.
In the mind of your potential customer the experience that speaks with the most relevance is the experience of people like them. This is why you want to let your happy customers do some selling for you.
Don't just tell, SHOW
Your brand story is you how tell potential customers about the transformation your brand provides (results).
Your case studies are how you show potential customers the results you deliver and what that transformation looks like in real life.
When you have both of these kinds of story in your marketing and they reinforce each other you have very powerful marketing that speaks straight to your potential customer.
The key to case studies is the transformation
Case studies illustrate the transformation your brand provides. And transformation is change.
As a business owner it's easy to get focused on outcomes and results because that is what we deliver. Happy, satisfied customers are likely to do the same, because that's where they are now--living in the reality of results. But if we forget to mention the starting point, we aren't showing the change that takes place in our customers' lives.
You can use the words of your current (and past) happy customers to help sell what you offer if you invite them to describe both their current reality of happy satisfaction AND the reality of the struggle they were dealing with before your brand.
The way to show transformation is with contrast
What potential customers need to hear from your brand is how you take them from where they are to where they want to be. Your brand story is exactly this. And your case studies illustrate your brand story with real-life examples.
Case studies help you sell stuff because your potential customer can recognize themself in the transformation story. To do this, a case study must describe the customer's experience of both BEFORE and AFTER. In the Before they see where they are now, and in the After they see where they want to be.
Tip of the week: When you create case studies or request customer testimonials, be sure to ask questions that elicit the transformation
There are many excellent questions you can ask to elicit the transformation. Here are two of my favorites:
When you use well-designed questions in your case study interviews and testimonial requests you get stories of transformation that help sell your stuff.
Know who your work is for, be their trusted guide, and use their words so you can speak straight to their heart
We're here to help
If you want to explore working with experts to strategize your storytelling, clarify your brand story, or leverage your case studies, we invite you to schedule a free Business Clarity Session with us. We have packages that get you a clear brand story and/or turn that clarity into a gorgeous website that is designed to grow your business.
Thanks for doing what you do in the world,
Kai & Michael
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