Hotel Online  Special Report


 Customer Stories Drive Sales and
Reduce Marketing Costs
By Julie Keyser-Squires, APR
Vice President, Softscribe Inc.
January 2006 
Whether your company’s business objective is to drive sales, solidify brand awareness, attract buyers, position for a possible IPO or a combination of the above, customer stories power the kind of public relations momentum needed to support these goals.  For best results we like to generate an average of one customer story a month for our clients, and then reuse the material to leverage their PR investment through multiple placements of the same content.  To reduce marketing costs, a single customer story can be Search Engine Optimized then distributed on the news wires and RSS news feeds to contribute to a link building campaign; pitched to editors; posted on the company’s website; printed for in-house magazines; reprinted as leave-behind collateral for the sales team; and used in new product launches or in permission-based analyst presentations at top conferences.  As long as they are combined with the right messaging, written as a solution – not an ad, and issued consistently, customer stories are a proven, simple and highly cost-effective way to generates sales leads and solidify a company’s brand. 

Julie Keyser-Squires, APR, is vice president
and co-founder of Softscribe Inc.

Here are four privately held technology companies that have used Softscribe’s CustomerYieldSM customer story campaign to help:

  • Grow successfully from a legacy company to a digital age rebranding to an acquisition; 
  • Accelerate growth from a product start-up mode to a $30 million acquisition; 
  • Generate a 30% increase in website hits through mining 100% customer loyalty maintained over three decades;
  • Drive 24% growth increase for a second generation privately held company.
Vantis Corporation:  From Legacy Company to Digital Age Rebranding to Acquisition

“Four years ago our strength as a company was our satisfied clients and our successes, but we were the best kept secret in the hotel industry.   Implementing a systematic customer success story campaign, along with our other sales efforts, helped double the size of the business in two years,” said Kelly Blake, formerly president of Calgary-based Vantis International Corporation, previously VIP International Corporation, which launched a rebranding in October 2004.  “We can tell everyone how good we are all day long, but it will never get traction until your clients tell the industry.”  Blake noted that Vantis repurposed its customer stories in emails to industry influencers and by posting them on the Vantis website.  Vantis was acquired by TravelCLICK in October 2005. 

Computas NA:  From ‘Startup’ to Being Acquired for $30 Million 

“We had been selling into the US government market for about 18 months when we brought Softscribe Inc. on board as a force multiplier. Their messaging and especially the customer stories have helped more than double our sales,” said Bill Wright, formerly president and CEO of Computas, NA and currently CTO of Troux Technologies.  Computas NA was acquired by Austin, Texas-based Troux in December 2004 in an all-stock deal estimated to be worth $30 million. (BusinessWeek, January 11, 2005, “A Software Solution to Tech Clutter.”)

Aptech Computer Systems, Inc.:  Mining 100% customer loyalty maintained over three decades for 30% increase in website hits

"Aptech has had 100% customer loyalty over the last 30 years offering back office and Cognos-based business intelligence solutions to hospitality,” said Jay Troutman, president of Aptech Computer Systems, Inc.  “Softscribe Inc. helped us identify our core positioning and then increased our exposure in the industry through meaningful articles, press releases and customer stories.  Our public relations momentum has resulted in a 30% increase in hits on our website, which brings us more qualified customers." 

NORTHWIND:  Second Generation Privately Held Business Rises with 24% Growth

"NORTHWIND has grown 24% year-over-year in no small part because of Softscribe Inc.'s public relations and marketing work for us including customer stories,” said Warren Dehan, president of US Operations for NORTHWIND.  “We highly value them as an integral part of our marketing and sales team. “  Ontario, Canada-based NORTHWIND was founded 20 years ago to provide technology and service solutions uniquely to the hospitality industry. The privately held company is credited with introducing the hospitality industry’s first integrated Windows Property Management and Sales & Catering system. 

About Softscribe Inc.
Founded in 1999, Softscribe Inc. practices true public relations, not just publicity, to help technology companies targeting the US government, healthcare and hospitality industries drive product sales and solidify their brands. The company does this through a blend of traditional one-to-one-marketing public relations and imaginative Search Marketing with an emphasis on media and influencer relationships, writing, and a focus on messaging strategy.  Softscribe is honored to be chosen by these respected companies: Aptech Computer Systems, Inc.; Troux Technologies; Gold Key Solutions; LodgeNet, NORTHWIND; SECURE-RES, Manugistics, ZDirect and many more.  For more information please


Julie Keyser-Squires, APR
Softscribe Inc.

Also See: Leading Tech Vendors Drive Sales with Online PR / Softscribe Adds Online PR Product to Fuel Technology Clients’ Sales Growth; Debuts New Website / November 2005

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