8 Opportunities You’re Missing in Marketing Success Stories

SuccessStoryPro.com-marketing-strategy

By Gina Kellogg

Customer success stories are valuable because they allow prospects to see how your product or service solved a problem or helped the customer in some significant way. But the stories do little good if you don’t publicize them so that prospects have access to them.

How can you take advantage of the success stories you create? Make the case studies and white papers for your business part of your overall marketing strategy. For some ideas of how you can incorporate them into your promotions, check out the list of suggestions below. (Tip: Bookmark this page so you can refer back to it as a reminder for each new success story you create.)

1) Showcase success stories on your website.

Add a link among the main options for navigating your site. Don’t bury your success stories in a subfolder or under a tab that doesn’t specifically lead readers to them. Instead, include a section such as “Case Studies,” “Success Stories,” “Customer Showcase” or something similar directly on your home page. Many websites include testimonials on their home pages, which is an idea marketing experts recommend. But when you have a success story, you can take that technique a step further by adding a sidebar or box with a catchy or intriguing message to encourage site visitors to click through to read about the full story.

2) Blog about success stories.

Don’t simply add a new success story to your website and be done with it. If you have a blog (and you should), then make sure you mention it there. Provide a brief overview with a link to the story. Internal links on your website are a bonus because they help improve the SEO (search-engine optimization) of your website.

3) Promote success stories via social media.

Incoming links to your website are another great SEO technique. So take advantage of the success stories on your site by promoting them on social media. Send out a Tweet that summarizes the case study. Post a link from your Facebook page about your white paper. Mention it on the content-sharing sites such as Digg and Reddit. Exposing more prospects to the story will gain you even more leads and potential sales.

4) Include success stories in your e-newsletter.

Often, businesses run out of ideas of what to include in their regular digital promotions. When you have positive stories about your customers’ successes, you never run out of content. And you give prospects new insight into how others have found your product of service to be of value.

5) Add a success story to a sales letter or flier.

Marketing materials that you can leave behind with a customer provide them with the opportunity to read about your business’s offerings when they have time to study them in depth. So develop your case study into a one- or two-page document and provide copies to your sales staff, hand it out at trade shows or conferences and add it to media kits.

6) Develop a PowerPoint or SlideShare presentation using a success story.

Pull out the key points to include in a presentation and include photos, charts and other graphics that help to illustrate your customers’ successes. Use the PowerPoint in a live presentation with a customer or at an event, and upload the SlideShare version to help generate online interest.

7) Create a press release focused on a success story.

Have a new offering and need a way to give it an interesting “hook” that will generate interest from the press? Use a customer success story to introduce it.

8) Offer a success story as an article for an industry publication.

Magazine editors are often interested in including objective and compelling stories in their publications. Their readers want to see how their colleagues are solving problems and improving processes. So offer up the option of providing an article based on a case study or a white paper to generate even more buzz about your business.

How else have you used your success stories in your marketing to get the full value from them? Pulling quotes to use as testimonials? Including them in a speech? I’d love to know how you gained even more marketing mojo from them!

About the author: Gina Kellogg is founder/principal of The Success Story Pro and Hott Cornflakes Communications. Get more from Gina at Twitter (@Gina_Kellogg and @SuccessStoryPro), Google+, LinkedIn and Facebook.

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