The five-star review your client doesn't have time to write.
(So you write it for them.)
WHAT IS A CASE STUDY?
A case study is a piece of content that provides an in-depth look at a specific business problem, the solution your brand provided, and the results your client achieved. It provides an opportunity for your audience to understand what your brand is good at and how you've already helped others like them, in an easy-to-follow format.
How Are Case Studies Beneficial?
Case studies make a fantastic addition to your content marketing toolkit. Here's why:
- First, they help persuade potential clients that you aren't just talk. They present qualitative and quantitative information that highlights your capabilities and the real results your solutions have achieved.
- Case studies also allow you to profile your specificity or your range of expertise, whichever makes more sense for your brand. You can do this by creating multiple case studies across different problem sets and clients, illustrating your depth and breadth.
- Finally, a case study is a versatile multitool you can use and distribute again and again. Once created, a case study can appear on your website, be shared with prospects via email or social, or be repackaged for relevant RFPs.
What Does A Good Case Study Need?
When you're putting the time in to build a case study, you want to be sure it's good enough to serve all the aforementioned use cases. Here are a few key components to include to make sure your case study gets the attention and the results it deserves.
(Wanna see one in action? Check out this case study of one of our favorite clients.)
It's important to catch your audience's attention early, or you'll lose them before they get to the meat of the work. Providing an overview of the case study will help engage audience members quickly, while also ensuring they aren't wasting their time on a case study that isn't relevant to them. It's also an opportunity to introduce your reader to your client, the subject of the case study.
Problem / Challenge
Every case study is built around a specific problem your client had before they brought you in to solve it. Don't forget to include the emotional impact of this problem. It's one thing to talk about how low their sales were and quite another to tell how it affected their family or made them reconsider a lifelong ambition.
Give your audience a clear picture of the "Before" in your client's transformation, but don't spend too long here: The best is yet to come.
Solution / Process
This is where you get to start showing what makes you so special. The bulk of the case study should be contained here, where you illustrate how you tackled the problem and what your solution brought to the table. Here, it is key to strike a balance between being concise and providing the necessary details for the reader to understand your process and how you helped your client.
You did it! Yes, you reached the end of your case study, but more importantly, you got the job done. This section brings the entire case study together, as it shows exactly what you did for your client. Don't overwhelm the reader with information, but draw attention to the key results that highlight your value proposition — and don't forget to resolve the emotional impact, in addition to the hard stats.
How To Build Your Case Study
Whether you're outsourcing your case study, relying on an in-house team, or writing it yourself, it's important to understand the full situation before you get to work. Start by gathering information from any relevant stakeholders. This should include your client (and the key people on their team who interacted with your brand) but might also include an account manager or sales person from your own team. Keep an ear out for quotes to pull verbatim into the finished piece, and be sure to get whatever numbers you can — from both before and after — to illustrate the business impact of your solution.
Once you've collected the information, it's time to shape it into a narrative. Make sure you're hitting the key sections of problem, solution, and results, while providing it in a tone and format that fit your brand. Sprinkle the key numbers and quotes throughout, and develop a template you can reuse for future case studies.
You're almost there. The final step is vetting and approval. Once your client and any other internal stakeholders have signed off on the initial case study, you can work on promoting, distributing, and repackaging it for other applications as necessary.
The case study is a practical tactic for content marketers to effectively build rapport with a specific audience. It helps illustrate the why and how behind a company's value proposition, and it offers a great opportunity to show why your clients love you. Most importantly, it helps differentiate you from your competition, build trust with prospects, and provide a valuable asset you can reuse again and again.
Hi, we’re Verblio.
We create content for SEO and content marketing for every niche.