Are you always talking about your product or service in your marketing materials and PR? You do have a great product (or service) and of course, you need to market it. In fact, we just wrote about how to get an editor’s attention in these two posts, here and here, to improve the usefulness of your press releases.
That being said, I must point out that you may not be the best person to be speaking to your product or service.
Should You or Your Customer Speak?
The short answer? Your customer, whenever possible.
The press really has heard it all before. But nothing gets an editor’s attention faster than the ability to speak to an actual customer using that great new product of yours. Your customers can make the press understand the value of your product better than you can.
Customers provide perspective for editors. They show:
- Who buys your products or services
- How well your product performed compared to your competitors
- The current and future applications for the product
- The value it has given them
Keep in mind that it isn’t just editors that find a customer testimonial about a new product valuable.
One of the true strengths of a customer’s story is in the value it gives your prospective customers.
When you release a new product and you also provide a success story of how a customer has used the same product, that customer has just validated everything you’ve said in your marketing materials about the product. These stories provide your prospects a way to appreciate how that product is used in the lab. They present a way for potential new customers to understand how the product will work in their own labs.
A BWS Customer Story
A great example of a company that does this well is Bruker Daltonics. Each year at ASMS they hold a press event to speak about their products and how they work. And each year, they have their customers speak to how their products work.
This gives the press the chance to ask questions and understand how these new products work in an actual lab environment. Bruker’s customers are right there, and can talk about how the product fits into their research or lab. They can also provide the press with a perspective on where they see the future of the technology. (If you happen to be a publically-traded company, this is important because the information reaches investors who also attend the press events.)
These press events go well beyond the print journals you might be envisioning. Most publications have moved into digital channels in addition to print – or they may be web only. The flexibility of channels means that your information may reach further than you imagine, as publications can now provide video as well as editor’s content and press release coverage.
For instance, Select Science, a digital-only publication, covered the Bruker press event and found Bruker’s new timsTOF™ of particular interest all because of the fact that they had a customer on-site talking about how it works, what they see as they value of the equipment and where they see using it in the future.
So while Select Science covered the press event and published the press release, they also had an editor interview Bruker’s customer which they published as an online video. See the video here.
What was the overall value of a customer story to the company? The leads it generated.
Once the video was published on the Select Science website, it was viewed 176 times, with 28 click-throughs and 17 leads between the show in June and August.
The real trick is developing your relationship with industry editors so that when their reporters are writing about topics, they immediately think about your company (your brand), and your product or service.
If you’re wondering how to develop those relationships, give us a call. We’re happy to point you in the right direction.