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It is imperative for a business to acquire new customers and maintain existing ones. This is only possible with the right marketing tactics. But how do you appeal to your target market? The new age customer is more aware. Research shows that 9 out of 10 customers read product reviews before finalizing their purchase. However, businesses don’t have any control over customer reviews.
In light of this, content marketing has emerged as a viable strategy, of which case studies are deemed highly effective. A case study is a viable marketing strategy for any business, much more effective than in-your-face marketing via ads.
What is a Case Study?
For those who are unaware, a case study is a document or video that details a client’s real-life experience of what it was like to use your product or service. It’s like a story that traces the customer’s journey, right from the time the client had a problem down to how your company’s product solved their issue.
If you manage to create a solid case study, the reader will be able to relate to the mentioned customer. They will visualize how using your featured product will a) solve their problem and b) help them reach their goals. Generally, case studies have a beginning, middle, and (happy) ending. We’ll talk about this in more detail shortly, so keep reading.
Benefits of Case Studies for Businesses
Are you wondering if your business needs a case study to market your product or service? Here are a few benefits of case studies that you should consider.
- Build trust in your business
- Engage potential customers through storytelling
- Create a need for your product/service in the eyes of your target audience
- Boost SEO
- Prove your credibility with real numbers
How to Write a Case Study?
Writing a case study is a work of art. A good case study can be the difference between a regular and a lost customer. It helps market your product or service and ensures customers stay till the end of your sales funnel. This guide will shed light on the case study writing steps that will boost your sales and generate increased revenue for your business.
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1. Highlight a Problem
As a seasoned businessman, you probably know customers don’t buy products and services; they buy solutions to their problems. A great marketer knows they need to create a problem, a sense that something is missing from the consumer’s life. As the story progresses, reveal your product as the magic elixir, the missing piece of the puzzle in their life. You don’t want to appear sales-y in any of the case study writing steps. It’s like you’re telling a story backed by any quotes from the horse’s mouth and any facts, statistics, charts, and graphs you can add.
When writing a case study, you must give background and then highlight the problem. Introduce the customer like they are one of the readers. The ‘customer’ you choose for the case study should be like your target audience. You want the customer to think, ‘this could have been me!’ Make sure you write in a way to bring out the customer’s perspective. Instead of using complicated jargon, keep the language as simple as possible. This makes the case study more relatable for potential customers. An essential writing tip to remember is that at no point should the author include their opinion. Use words that incite emotion, but do not overdo it.
For example, if you have a business selling phone covers, you want to start by telling the reader how the customer saved up for months to buy the latest iPhone. But the client dropped their phone one day and cracked their expensive screen. Add a percentage of how many people unintentionally drop and break their phones. This creates an obvious problem, i.e., lack of protection for your phone.
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2. Provide the Solution
The next step is to provide a solution to the problem you mentioned above, but don’t shove it in the reader’s face. Remember, you aren’t advertising your business the traditional way. It should appear as organic as possible so the customer doesn’t become weary of it. Instead, build the story to titillate the reader’s attention. At this point, they are essentially reading a story about a relatable customer. This section should trace the same customer’s journey of how they found you and how you changed their life (of course, a tad less dramatic than this!)
This is your time to shine. In this section, introduce your business and what you’re all about. Many people wonder whether to write in the first or third person. We recommend writing in the third person, as it gives a certain authenticity to the text that first-person case studies can’t imitate. This is your chance to concrete yourself above competitors by telling the readers why the customer chose you among the other options available. Add your unique selling point covertly so it gets the job done without appearing pushy. What should be clear in your case study is the link between the customer’s problem and your product or service. Write the solution clearly: did it alleviate or eradicate the problem?
Following the example above, you might say the customer’s friend recommended your company’s phone covers she’d been using for years. Mention your company name, the product the customer used, and what features of your cover make it the ideal option- a transparent cover that doesn’t hide your phone’s beauty or logo. Mention that the customer could protect their phone from scratches and falls, which solves the customer’s problem.
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3. Prove the Results
This is the time to reveal how the product solved the customer’s problem, armed with real-time stats and the product’s benefits. Your case study can’t just state that this product works and be done with it. Conduct research to know how much this product helps along with outlining its important features. Numbers are more likely to convince readers instead of random lines claiming that so and so the product works, although eloquent writing will achieve that too. If you have any existing statistics for how your product works for the target audience, throw that in too. After your case study descriptively explains how the product helped the reader, you must add cold facts and hard figures.
This step is like your mic drop. Here, you’ll outline the steps undertaken to achieve X results. This provides an opportunity to outline how to use your product. You might say the product solved the problem by (insert number) percent. But that’s not enough. You also need to prove how that is possible.
For example, you would mention that your company’s phone covers reduced impacts from falls on your phone by 80%. This maintains your phone’s resale value by x%. But how? Your covers have a protective cushioning that adds a layer of protection to your phone, more than the average covers that provide reduced impact protection of 40%.
4. Add a CTA
No marketing tactic is complete without a clear call-to-action (CTA). We advise adding additional praises in the form of quotes from the customer. You might also incorporate advice from the customer for other like-minded clients, i.e., your target market.
Conclude your case study with a clear and concise call to action. Make sure you add your business name and a link to your website so the reader doesn’t have to fend for it.
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Other Case Study Writing Tips to Remember
Once you know the three basic case study writing steps, you must also incorporate the following writing tips that make your case study more effective and increase sales.
- Choose an attention-grabbing title: Carefully select a title that is accurate and immediately captures the reader’s attention. We suggest adding numbers that make the case study more authentic and credible. For example, you might say, ‘How X Food App Drove Restaurant Sales by 34%.’
- Format the text: Make sure the case study is properly formatted from beginning to end. Use a larger, clearly legible font and size, and incorporate headings to make the text scannable.
- Edit and Proofread: Spelling mistakes, overusing passive voice and flowery language fail to make an impact and cause your case study to lose credibility. Write a first draft and re-read your case study to ensure it is error-free and easy to read.
- Add Pictures: We cannot underestimate the effectiveness of visual imagery. Add a relevant picture to liven up your case study. Position this picture in between large blocks of text so readers don’t get bored and quit reading.
- Practice Brevity: As a general rule, keep your case study between 500 to 1500 words in length. Users might not commit to longer case studies with more than 5 pages, which means you’ll lose a potential customer.
Bespoke Case Study Writing Service
Whether you lack the time or expertise to create a winning case study, let the pros do the job for you. Content Development Pros offers clients a Case Study Design Service that incorporates writing, editing, and design all in one. Boost your business’s credibility through well-written and researched custom case studies targeted to expertly market your business without sounding sales-y.