Have you got a good story?
A great case study comes from a great story. There are three elements that have to be present for it to be of use as a marketing tool – there has to be a problem or challenge to overcome, a solution proffered, and a benefit produced.
Pick the story that has the most impact and will resonate with your customers. Before you even begin to write that case study you need to understand why potential customers are interested in your product and what they are looking for in great copy.
- Choose the best subject with the most compelling story to tell.
- Think about your title carefully and use strong, active words to make it attention grabbing.
- Write in the third person and include quotes from the customer who was helped by your product or service. Make sure that what they say is as strong and meaningful as your supporting copy.
- You should be aiming for between 500 and 700 words minimum of good, concise copy that takes the reader from the start of the problem through to the solution (note that some technical/specialist case studies can stretch to 3,000 words).
- Avoid sales type jargon that makes you sound as if you are just trying to promote your product. Put the customer at the centre of the story. This is not an infomercial, it’s a case study. Make sure it sounds authentic.
- As a matter of courtesy, always check with the customer when you have completed your copy to check for any inaccuracies and make sure they are happy.
The devil is in the detail
Your customers don’t want to know that your product or service worked but how, why, when, what and who went into it working. The story should be full enough that it answers all the questions about how you transformed this particular customer’s life.
- Don’t be afraid to put in any unexpected hurdles that had to be overcome.
- Do include stats if you have them, but don’t overdo it.
- Include comments and quotes from people who worked on the problem, not just the case study customer.
Getting the right quotes
Perhaps the most difficult aspect of writing a great case study is getting those killer quotes. It’s not a good idea to make them up, but, if your customer is amenable, taping an interview can provide you with all the quality you need. Another source of good quotes is the all-important customer satisfaction questionnaire and email correspondence.
You don’t have to write it
A great case study doesn’t have to be a written expose of your best service, you can present it in many different formats from a YouTube video, an audio podcast, to a colourful infographic or PowerPoint presentation. If you have the expertise and the budget, then try producing your case study in a variety of formats.
The benefit of a great case study
A good case study is reusable for a variety of other sales and marketing opportunities, including pitches and presentations. They are also invaluable pieces of marketing collateral that can be revised and revamped for things like brochures, blog posts, and testimonials. A great case study allows potential clients to picture themselves with your products or services. A way of targeting your market that works!
For further advice on Case Studies or other ways to market your business, products or services call us on 01327 359908 or email firstname.lastname@example.org we always offer a complimentary consultation!