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Friday, 18 January 2019 11:59

Testimonials: Capturing the full story

Published in Marketing

I have lost count of the number of client testimonial pieces that we have worked on over the last 20 years and it is still true to say that testimonial articles remain a valid marketing tactic in the B2B arena.

With technology just a click or voice command away, it is often all too tempting to interview clients and their end users over the phone. However, where possible, especially when we are covering a significant technological breakthrough or improvement, the face-to-face approach is still king.

Just as when conducting market research, face-to-face interviewing of a satisfied end user allows for a much deeper conversation and more comprehensive appreciation of the factors that led to their purchase. Aside from the potential to witness an in-situ demonstration of the product or service, or to speak with additional members of the team, one-to-one interviewing enables body language and facial expressions to be more clearly understood and identified; enabling further probing and explanations of responses given during the interview that may not be so easy to pick up on over the 'phone.

Whether to interview in person or not depends on many factors, including the objectives for the finished piece. Before any interview, we define the audience we wish to influence and set objectives. 

In addition to helping to establish trust and credibility in the market, another benefit of client testimonials is that you get to understand the 'normal', natural language that end users use when talking about their purchase. For a cutting edge scientific product or technology, this intelligence can be invaluable in supporting message formation and keyword identification.

Whenever we interview face-to-face we often arrange to take a professional photographer along. It is hard to imagine any trade press activity on or off line that does not use or need great photography to capture the imagination of their audience. We would always recommend that a professional photographer is used as a good quality set of photos can often be the difference between publication or not. Despite our lack of photography skills, we have worked with a number of excellent photographers over the years and we know what makes a good press photo.

At Accelerate, we recently created a customer testimonial piece for Dr Weigert UK, a provider of technical cleaning solutions. We interviewed the Head of Sterile Services at the Royal Victoria Infirmary, Newcastle-upon-Tyne about the recent installation of Dr Weigert's neodisher ® ALPHA dosing system. The article has been published in the Clinical Services Journal and features photography taken on location.

Tuesday, 10 April 2018 08:42

Using video to tell your story

Published in Marketing

An ideal storytelling tool, videos are recognised widely as the platform to use to engage with key audiences.

Communication is changing

We are now seeing a generational shift in how we interact with computers and phone screens. Communication is increasingly becoming more visual, using animated avatars, images, live-streaming and social media platforms like Instagram and Snapchat.

Starting the conversation

Video combines the use of visuals, music and words to help develop stronger relationships between brands and their audience. They can also perform a wide variety of functions from being educational through to inspirational. Perfect for digital campaigns, videos can be cut for use on Instagram or snapchat; they can be a one-off piece or part of a series of short videos that forms the basis of a conversation with your audience.

Where to use video

Videos work well pretty much anywhere - whether embedded on your website, featured in your blog, shared in emails, or hosted on YouTube. Better still, they do not have to be big budget productions either. Good quality, simple customer testimonials can convey a powerful message. In the medical technology market, patient stories can be emotive.

Supporting the sales process

For companies looking to re-position themselves in a new market segment, a slick video can help open up interest from new markets. Educational videos that explain solutions to customer problems can generate interest whereas clear demonstration videos can be used to identify stronger prospects. Testimonials and customer stories help to close the deal.

The key thing to remember is to treat video exactly the same as you would if devising a marketing campaign; research and understand your audience, define the story you want to tell and try to produce something that does not overtly come across as "marketing".

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Partnerships & Affiliations

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Chartered Marketeer
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Founded in 2007, Accelerate Associates is a specialist business-to-business marketing agency providing marketing and market research for science and medical technologies... More...

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