For enterprise testimonials vendors, customer testimonials and case studies are among the most impactful marketing and sales enablement assets and are leveraged across the sales funnel. The best case studies clearly articulate the pain points faced by end-user organizations and project an authentic customer voice, ideally supported by defensible metrics. Of course, case studies represent another avenue for telling your story to press and analysts. I’ve written dozens of case studies for clients, managing the entire process from preparing the interview questions, running the interview and managing the editorial process.
Every security vendor faces a common dilemma: how do you get a customer to talk about your solutions given the sensitivity of talking publicly about their security posture? DomainTools is an interesting case point in this regard. The company was initially founded as a repository of domain intelligence that was primarily used by customers to protect their brand from infringement but then recognized that their deep archive of historical domain information would hold great value to forensic security analysts who could use this rich source of historical domain intelligence to unmask threat actors. While they had some very enthusiastic early adopters of their platform, few were willing to on-the-record for a case study. So instead we approached one of their largest customers about writing an anonymized case study (“How a Fortune 15 Technology Enterprise Proactively Detects Advanced Threats With DomainTools”) which helped their sales team communicate the value of their platform and served as a proof of concept to security editors unfamiliar with their solution.
Isilon Systems was one of the leading providers of clustered storage before being gobbled up by Dell EMC. Storage - clustered or otherwise - is a relatively commoditized component of infrastructure and let’s face it, not the most exciting topic. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t interesting stories to tell via your customers. On behalf of Isilon, I interviewed the CTO of UCLA’s Laboratory of Neuro Imaging (LONI) and wrote this case study (“Transforming Grey Matter into Medical Breakthroughs”) detailing how Isilon’s cluster storage array was enabling their team of world-class researchers to advance the scientific understanding of the brain.
As part of its push to penetrate into the Financial Services vertical, global telecom provider Zayo wanted to publish a case study featuring a financial services customer to help arm its sales team in the field. However, since their offering was relatively new they didn’t have a true end-user customer with benchmarked results. Instead, they had a strategic partner called Pico, which itself was an infrastructure service provider to the financial services industry and together, they were building a joint solution featuring ultra low latency and global redundancy for the capital markets. This case study (“An Innovative Global Infrastructure for Trading Services”) is a good example of how a conventional marketing message can be creatively reconfigured in a more compelling narrative format.