How To Get a Better Customer Quote

04/28/2010

You’ve got happy customers and you want to show off what they’ve accomplished with your product in you marketing materials, online content and press releases.  Here’s how to create a better customer quotes (and scroll down for some examples):

  1. Start with your Value Proposition – A quote from a customer is one way to bring your key points of value to life.  If your key value is that you save people time, it makes sense to have a customer explain how much time or how it saved them time. You are probably laughing at how obvious that is but I’ve seen loads of companies that have a million quotes that don’t back up any of their key points of value.
  2. Write it yourself – your customers don’t spend their day dreaming up succinct, smart things to say about your product.  Nope, that’s your job.  Interview the customer first obviously but then write the quote the way you know they would say it if they understood your positioning as well as you do. Send it to them for approval and then work from there.  If you listened to what they had to say, your quote will stand as is.
  3. Keep it as short as possible – Quotes can be used in a wide range of content and sometimes you don’t have much space.  Keep the quote short and to the point and you’ll be able maximize the number of places you can use it.
  4. Clearly state the benefits and be specific - “We like the Foobar 2000 a lot.” is nice but “We tripled our close rates using the Foobar 2000.” is nicer.
  5. Make the benefits as quantitative as possible -  Putting real numbers on the benefit not only makes the statement more believable, it able helps people get a grip on the scale of the benefit.  Saying customers can save “a lot” of money using your solution doesn’t have nearly the punch of saying “We saved $1,000 a day.”

For fun – here are some examples I pulled from corporate websites (the product names have been changed to protect the innocent).

The Boring – Go ahead, replace “Company X” with any company in the space and tell me it isn’t still true. Yawn.

  • Company X has a deep understanding of our business model and they share a common vision for enabling doctors to focus on quality of patient care.
  • After evaluating the needs of our company and comparing “Product X” to several other solutions, it was a clear choice to partner with Company X to develop a more cost-efficient and effective means of communication.

The Incomprehensible – I know someone must have understood these at some point. Maybe?  Sort of?

  • The combination of “Product X” and “Product Y” provides “Customer A” a scalable and flexible infrastructure to serve the business critical needs of our customers. The results we have achieved are a testament to Company X’s commitment to pushing the boundaries of IT performance and support.
  • The convergence of networks and technologies requires a transformational approach in the way we do business, particularly in the way we first design and then offer our customers next-generation services. Company X is helping us make the best use of our customer information and network assets so we can produce a personalized and integrated experience for our customers.
  • Forward-thinking companies are realizing the benefits of an interoperability collaboration designed to address the mixed-source realities we’re facing today and will continue to face tomorrow.

The Pretty Darn Good! – They are brief, I can identify the intended audience and there’s quantifiable value.  Perfect!

  • If you are a lawyer go check out “Product X” and think how easy life can be for you and that client. And you can post documents to the client’s project for review without the grief of sending a fax or the worry of lost emails. No $6 faxes needed!
  • By deploying “Product X”, we decreased the number of physical servers, improved overall performance as well as reduced power and cooling requirements by 40 percent.
  • We used to spend hours a day making sure our shared information was up to date.  “Product X” takes care of that automatically, so we can spend more time serving our customers.
  • With “Product X”, we now expect to reduce our statement processing time from hours to minutes.

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