What Is a Use Case in Marketing?

by Owen Pearson; Updated September 26, 2017

Demonstrating the benefits of a product or service is a critical element to success in marketing. If a customer does not understand the potential benefits of a service or product, he is unlikely to commit to a purchase. A use case in marketing is a demonstration that shows the interaction between the end user and a product or service. Although use cases are most commonly used in technology settings, these demonstrations can help effectively convey benefits to customers in a marketing presentation.

Selecting a Use Case

As a marketer, you have the ability to customize use cases for each prospect, based on how she will interact with your product or service. You can customize a use case by taking the time to ask your prospect about the goals she wants to achieve and problems she wants to solve. If your prospect is a business, you can also ask the representative how the business operates to achieve the goal of providing its own products or services to its clients.

Stepping Into the Prospect's Shoes

Presenting a use case to a client involves stepping into the prospect's shoes; that is, you will tell the story from the client's point of view. This allows the prospect to become an active part of the sales process, instead of simply viewing your presentation as a pitch. Stepping into the prospect's shoes also allows the prospect to more thoroughly understand how he will use the product or service, and how the service or product will help him reach his goal or resolve his problem.

Visual Aids

Using visual aids such as diagrams can help your prospect follow your use case, and can reinforce the benefits of your product or service in your prospect's mind. Create a flow chart showing the prospect's likely interactions as a user of your service or product. The chart should show the steps involved in each type of interaction, leading to the resolution of your prospect's problem or achievement of his goal.

Considerations

When creating a use case, provide a summary of the case from the prospect's point of view. This can help establish the context of the use case. When possible, avoid the use of technical terms that your prospect will not likely understand -- write the use case in natural, conversational language to keep the prospect engaged. Also, you may need to create several marketing use cases for a prospect if your product or service can help meet several goals or solve multiple problems. Llimiting each use case to one goal or problem can help you avoid confusing your prospect.

About the Author

Owen Pearson is a freelance writer who began writing professionally in 2001, focusing on nutritional and health topics. After selling abstract art online for five years, Pearson published a nonfiction book detailing the process of building a successful online art business. Pearson obtained a bachelor's degree in art from the University of Rio Grande in 1997.