Ho-Hum – Another Sound-Alike Case Study

Preparing a tailored case study questionnaire is one of the key elements in a successful case study initiative. Yet too many companies overlook this important step.

Does this sound familiar? A sales reps approaches you about a customer all revved up to participate in a case study. You grab your case study questionnaire and send it off to the customer with a meeting invite. Soon you – or your hired writer – are interviewing the customer. And my bet is that you and your sales team won’t be happy with the results.

Why? If you don’t use a tailored case study questionnaire, all your case studies will sound the same. Your sales reps won’t have access to case studies that show various situations and benefits. And your prospects will likely assume that your solutions apply to a limited set of circumstances.

So how can you make sure each of your case studies tells a unique and compelling story? Find out as much as possible about the customer’s situation, needs, and results. And that research starts before the interview. Here’s where to look.

4. Annual reports. As I mentioned above, annual reports sometimes include reference to products the company is using. But if Google doesn’t serve up a relevant result, you should still take a look at the customer’s annual report if they’re a publicly traded company. You can often find mention of strategic initiatives and goals that might tie in nicely to the story you’re hoping to tell. Heck, you might even come up with an angle you hadn’t even considered.

Once you’ve gathered this background information, insert customer-specific questions into the interview questionnaire. You’ll be well on your way to producing a unique and interesting story.

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