A well-written case study is a great marketing tool, no matter how long you’ve been in business. Unlike regular advertising, case studies give readers real-life examples of how your company has helped clients in the past – proving that you’re more than a name and a logo. To craft an engaging case study, make sure you ask the right questions and present your information in a pleasing format.
Find the Right Candidate for a Case Study
If you want to write a case study that’ll grab the attention of your target market, make sure you talk to the right clients. Look at the people or businesses that your company tends to work with. Do these reflect the types of clients you ideally want to work for? Choose a recent client that represents your optimal target market.
For example, say you run a startup marketing firm, and you want to attract big-name clients in the retail business. Your best choice for a case study candidate is probably a retailer. Maybe you helped this retailer by overhauling their online product descriptions for better search engine optimization. A case study that shows how you achieved this goal can make your firm stand out to potential corporate clients who are looking for similar services.
You want to talk to a client who’s used your products or services more than once – or on a significant scale. You’re looking for someone with existing knowledge of your company’s services. If you’ve worked with companies with well-established brand recognition, put them at the top of your list. A recognizable brand makes a perfect candidate for a case study. People searching for that brand are more likely to come across yours, now that you’ve shared this connection.
Conduct Effective Interviews
Before reaching out to your chosen client, figure out exactly what you’re going to need from them. Are you going to be using their brand names or trademarks? Make this clear in your initial contact email, so you don’t run into copyright snags later.
Give your client a reasonable timeline estimate, and give them a deadline for responding. How long will the interview process take? When is the case study going to be published? Mention how the case study can benefit the client – it’s advertising for them, too.
During the interview, avoid simple yes-or-no questions. Strive for more open-ended questions, such as:
- How would they describe their business’s day-to-day activities?
- What drew them to your services or product?
- How did they use your services? How long did it take to implement? What challenges did they face during the process?
- How did your services help their business? How has your service continued to help them?
Create a Case Study Template
One case study is good, but multiple case studies are better. Each case study represents a satisfied client or a successful project, so why not showcase as many as you can? Creating a case study template helps with your writing process, and it can be a helpful tool for thinking up interview questions and deciding who you want to talk to.
Decide on a few basic sections for each case study. Most case studies begin with an introduction, and include a story section about the problem or need, an explanation of your company’s solution, and some facts and statistical insights. Once you’ve written your first case study, you’ll see how your information all fits into this format, and you can tweak your template to fit your company’s marketing needs.
A well-written case study can be your secret weapon for word-of-mouth advertising, and getting recognition among similar companies and brands. Follow these guidelines to build a strong foundation for your case study, then tailor your writing to suit your desired audience and reach.