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Content Rules: How to Create Killer Blogs, Podcasts, Videos, Ebooks, Webinars (and More) That Engage Customers and Ignite Your Business by C. C. Chapman, Ann Handley

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Chapter 14. The Single Biggest Secret to Creating a Compelling Customer Success Story

(Formerly Known as a Case Study)

Case study (n): An in-depth examination of a single instance or event: a case. It provides an approach to analyzing information, and reporting the results to gain a better understanding or insight into a particular concept or idea.

Does the beginning of that headline sound like a ShamWow infomercial on late-night TV?

Perhaps! But it's dead-on accurate.

Other sections of this book have given you exhaustive recipes for creating remarkable webinars, ebooks, video, blogs, and so on. But creating a really good customer success story—also known as a case study—is a far simpler task.

Most case studies are dry, dreary articles punctuated with stats and tedious information that bore rather than inspire. They focus on product features, not the human benefits. They tend to be stuffed with self-flattery, jargon, and Franken-speak.

The keys are to tell a story the intended audience wants to hear, and to tell it with one simple imperative in mind. It helps to think of them less as case studies, which sounds clinical and detached and bloodless, and more like customer success stories, which sounds human and connected.

The simple secret is this: All you really need is to tell a good story that allows your organization to embrace the role of the cape-wearing superhero.

By story, we don't mean fable or fairy tale, despite the superhero analogy. Rather, we mean a true story about how your ...

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