Your relationship was solid, you delivered on all of your promises, they are thrilled with the work, and, they are experiencing results.

You ask, thinking they will surely want to, but instead, they decline.

What should you do?

Politely dig a little deeper to find out why.

Here are a few reasons why they may be reluctant to participate:

  1. Concerns about their public image (may not want vendors using their names as street cred)
  2. The case may contain commercially sensitive data
  3. It’s not a priority for them
  4. Reluctant to talk about their initial challenges and figures
  5. They view their supply chain as part of their competitive advantage
  6. Concerned they may be portrayed in an negative light

Here are a few ways to overcome objections:

  1. Write an anonymous case study (using pseudonyms)
  2. Agree to a limited use case (i.e. to be used for internal training purposes only)
  3. Assure them nothing will be published without their approval
  4. Position the case study as a win-win
  5. Let them know it won’t take much of their time (one interview, review, approve)

Some of my clients have a requirement for a case study in their contract.

Whatever you decide to do, think about it from their perspective. In other words, what’s in it for them?