What Is a Case Study?
When you’re performing research as part of your job or for a school assignment, you’ll probably come across case studies that help you to learn more about the topic at hand. But what is a case study and why are they helpful? Read on to learn all about case studies.
At face value, a case study is a deep dive into a topic. Case studies can be found in many fields, particularly across the social sciences and medicine. When you conduct a case study, you create a body of research based on an inquiry and related data from analysis of a group, individual or controlled research environment.
As a researcher, you can benefit from the analysis of case studies similar to inquiries you’re currently studying. Researchers often rely on case studies to answer questions that basic information and standard diagnostics cannot address.
Study a Pattern
One of the main objectives of a case study is to find a pattern that answers whatever the initial inquiry seeks to find. This might be a question about why college students are prone to certain eating habits or what mental health problems afflict house fire survivors. The researcher then collects data, either through observation or data research, and starts connecting the dots to find underlying behaviors or impacts of the sample group’s behavior.
During the study period, the researcher gathers evidence to back the observed patterns and future claims that’ll be derived from the data. Since case studies are usually presented in the professional environment, it’s not enough to simply have a theory and observational notes to back up a claim. Instead, the researcher must provide evidence to support the body of study and the resulting conclusions.
As the study progresses, the researcher develops a solid case to present to peers or a governing body. Case study presentation is important because it legitimizes the body of research and opens the findings to a broader analysis that may end up drawing a conclusion that’s more true to the data than what one or two researchers might establish. The presentation might be formal or casual, depending on the case study itself.
Once the body of research is established, it’s time to draw conclusions from the case study. As with all social sciences studies, conclusions from one researcher shouldn’t necessarily be taken as gospel, but they’re helpful for advancing the body of knowledge in a given field. For that purpose, they’re an invaluable way of gathering new material and presenting ideas that others in the field can learn from and expand upon.
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Top Benefits of Using Case Studies For Your Business
Consumers are a lot less susceptible to fancy sales pitches in this day and age, which is why the use of case studies can be very effective in building brand trust. Many consumers will ask friends and family for recommendations or look up online reviews before doing business with a particular brand. They do this because they simply trust other consumers more than they are willing to trust a brand. It’s due to these reasons that you should consider using case studies. We’ve gone over the case study questions you should ask, but the following is some information on what they actually are and how they can benefit your marketing efforts:
What are Case Studies?
Case studies are similar to testimonials in that they provide audiences with an account of previous customer experiences with the brand. However, testimonials are typically basic interviews that function as little more than positive reviews. Case studies are more in-depth and concern the entire process that the customer went through. Basically, it’s a depiction of their buyer journey and how your business helped to fulfill their needs from beginning to end. This allows for an element of storytelling that’s much more engaging
What are the Benefits of Using Case Studies?
Although case studies require a lot more effort to put together than the typical testimonial, it’s well worth the time and resources required. Many businesses will even produce their case studies as video content that their audiences can watch. The following are just a few of the benefits of creating case studies:
Build brand trust
Case studies are extremely effective in building trust because of the very fact that they represent the viewpoint of your previous customers. Instead of you telling your audience how great your brand is and how effective your products or services are, you’re having your customers do it for you. Not only do audiences trust other consumers more than they trust companies, but by allowing your previous customers to tell their stories, they are basically endorsing your brand, which gives your business more credibility.
Engage through storytelling
Simply having customers tell the audience that your product is great is just a basic customer testimonial. It’s not that interesting, nor is it very engaging. Case studies are more concerned with telling the story of the customer. The customer is the hero, their problem is the conflict and your brand’s solution is the resolution. The use of storytelling helps to make a brand much more relatable and will allow your audience to see how you fulfilled that customer’s need at every stage of the buyer journey.
Click here to learn the six C’s of story branding
Identify brand evangelists
To find the subjects of your case studies, you’ll need to speak to several clients or customers and request that they participate. Those that are willing are your brand evangelists. They are offering to tell their story because they believe in your brand. Knowing who your brand evangelists are is helpful because they can help improve your brand reputation through word-of-mouth marketing.
Assist your sales team
Having an assortment of case studies available on your site can be hugely beneficial to your sales team. This is because they can recommend prospects to watch specific case studies of previous customers who may have had similar problems. This, in turn, can help them close deals.
As you can see, case studies can be very beneficial to your marketing efforts. If you are not already using case studies in your business, we encourage you to give them a try. They are a powerful tool that can help you achieve a variety of goals.
Dan Gartlan helps companies of all kinds drive their business initiatives and achieve their goals with strategic marketing programs that deliver results. As President of Stevens & Tate Marketing, he has over 20 years experience across various industries, and continues to share his expertise to build brands nationwide.
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Benefits of Case Studies for Your Small Business
No matter what industry you’re in, the main thing your potential customers want to know is whether your business can actually deliver the promises made on your website and in your marketing. Any company can claim their products or services are of a high quality, which explains why so many consumers consult online reviews before making an important purchase. But reviews aren’t something your business can totally control, and they don’t paint the whole picture of your brand. If you’re looking for a way to demonstrate your company’s value and convince customers you’re the right choice, it’s time to develop some case studies:
What are Case Studies?
Case studies are a research method used in nearly every industry, from medicine to education, to analyze a claim or case. Essentially, case studies are stories of what happened in a real-life situation. In marketing, case studies tell a story of how a real customer overcame a challenge or reached a goal using a company’s products or services.
Like any good story, a case study has a beginning (customer problem or objective), middle (how a product or service was implemented), and ending (the results or objectives the customer achieved). If you’ve written a good case study, by the end, the reader should be relating to the featured customer and visualizing themselves achieving their own goals using your product or service.
Benefits of Case Studies for Small Businesses
Case studies can be developed using a variety of media, from copy and graphics to slideshows and videos. Even with a small budget, your small business can make a big impact through case studies.
- Tell your story and invite the customer to join you. If your company is publishing blogs, social media posts, and other types of content marketing , that’s great! You are already educating potential and existing customers about your industry and brand in relevant ways. Case studies are yet another way to show off what your company does, and they can help you connect with your target audience even deeper by inviting them to imagine themselves as part of your story. This type of marketing can be highly effective for attracting new leads and increasing customer loyalty.
- Offer solutions to problems that potential clients can relate to. Like an online review, a case study is a direct endorsement from a satisfied customer whose challenge or problem was resolved by your company’s solutions – but better. It’s a more complete story with real data, and it allows a potential customer to see themselves in the featured customer’s shoes.
- Provide credible evidence backed by numbers, data, and analysis. It’s not hard to understand why online reviews greatly influence consumers’ decisions – we all want proof of value before we spend our hard-earned money on a product or service. Testimonials are great, but a customer’s experience with your company is subjective. Case studies offer the cold, hard data.
- Boost your SEO. How people do (or don’t) engage with your online content can impact your SEO . Engaging, informative case studies can draw more visitors to your site and hold their attention, sending a signal to search engines that your content is relevant and valuable.
Here’s another tip to boost the SEO value of your case studies: Develop them based on key topics for your target audience, and choose keywords that relate to those topics. This appeals to both users and search engines.
The best case studies feature a compelling story that a majority of your target audience will identify with. Do you want some help? Contact Triton Commerce today! We strive to make digital marketing easy, honest, and, most importantly, profitable for your business.
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Case study benefits: Top 5 reasons case studies are powerful for marketing and sales
Want to improve your small business marketing and sales efforts? Here are the top 5 case study benefits for businesses.
As a small business owner or marketing manager, you always look for ways to improve your marketing and sales efforts. One way to do that is by using case studies.
Case studies are an extremely powerful marketing tool because they provide potential customers with real-world examples of how your products or services have helped others.
5. Manual prospecting & No system for generating consistent leads
How is a case study different from a testimonial, 5. they can be used as part of an automated case study funnel.
This post may contain affiliate links, meaning I receive a small commission at no cost to you when you make a purchase. This helps me pay to keep this site going and to bring all these free resources to you. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.
5 Reasons why small businesses struggle with converting prospects into clients:
Here are the top 5 reasons why businesses struggle with attracting the right types of clients and converting them on sales calls:
1. Lack of social proof
When you don’t have evidence of social proof, it’s harder to build trust with potential clients. They may not be sure if your product or service can really help them because they don’t have any third-party validation.
2. No credibility or trust
If potential clients don’t trust you, they will not do business with you.
If you can show that you’ve helped others solve their problems, it’ll be much easier to persuade potential clients to work with you.
3. Shallow case studies (or only using testimonials)
When selling services, testimonials don’t do the best job because they don’t provide any context to prospective clients.
Testimonials might say, “I loved working with Jane, she was great!” But what does that actually tell the prospects about what it was like to work with Jane and what results they can expect?
Shallow case studies have some of the same problems.
They might talk about the client’s challenge and what Jane did to help, but they don’t go into enough detail about the results.
What you want are case studies that tell a story, from the prospect’s perspective, about how you helped them solve their problem so that potential clients can see themselves in the case study and imagine what it would be like to work with you.
By having case studies that are well-written and rich in detail, you’ll be able to more effectively sell your services and close more business.
4. Talking to the wrong prospects
A lot of time can be wasted on sales calls with people who are not good prospects for your products or services.
It’s hard for prospects to know if they’re a good fit for your business or not when they can’t see examples of clients you typically work with.
A better way is to have a system that:
1) allows leads to self-qualify as to whether or not they’re a good fit to chat with you, and
2) warms up new prospects so that they’re already aware of the results you’ve produced for past clients and are more likely to do business with you by the time they’re on a sales call with you.
Whilst manual prospecting is encouraged and necessary in the early stages of starting or growing a business, eventually, if you don’t have a system for generating qualified leads regularly, you’ll struggle with consistent cash flow.
You’ll experience the “feast and famine” cycle common in small businesses .
One proven way to address these challenges is to leverage the power of case studies for sales and marketing.
What is a compelling case study?
A case study is a story that describes how a real customer used your product or service to solve a problem or accomplish a goal. It’s compelling when it answers all the questions (and potential sales objections) a prospect may have about your product or service.
A testimonial is simply a statement from a satisfied customer about how much they liked your product or service.
A case study goes into more detail about the customer’s story, describing their challenges and how your product or service helped them overcome those challenges to achieve their desired results.
Related : Why Case Studies Are Better Than Testimonials
Don't ask customers for testimonials. A case study interview is much better. That becomes: – Quality content that's interesting to similar potential customers. – Multiple story-based quotes that highlight real benefits of your product. – A piece your customer wants to share. — Brian Casel (@CasJam) July 30, 2020
Here are the top 5 case study benefits and why they’re so powerful:
1. they provide social proof..
When case studies are used in marketing and sales, they provide social proof that your product or service works. This is because prospects can see that you’ve helped other people who are just like them solve their problems.
This is especially effective when you’re selling to larger businesses, which often require multiple forms of social proof before purchasing.
2. They create instant credibility and trust. And are persuasive.
Because case studies feature real stories from actual customers, they carry a lot of weight and authority.
Case studies show potential customers that you’re trustworthy and that you care about your customer’s successes. They’re the ultimate positioning tool for your business.
A well-written case study can be very persuasive, giving potential customers all the information they need to make a decision in your favor.
3. They’re specific and detailed.
Case studies get specific, providing plenty of details about the problem the customer was facing and how your product or service was able to help solve it.
I'm a lover of case studies. What we did, which results we got, and so on. Thanks for bringing that, @MayKingTea at #SocialPulseSummit @Agorapulse #FOMO pic.twitter.com/QqlmxWeIUI — Marco Novo 🎥🔴 #livestreaming (@mfcnovo) February 24, 2021
4. They help prospects self-qualify
Case studies can serve as a great self-qualification tool for prospects.
For example, if you sell advisory services to $1M+ e-commerce businesses, you can use case studies to show that your service is helping businesses of that size to produce tangible results.
This can help prospects self-qualify and decide whether or not they should pursue doing business with you.
A case study funnel is simply a sales funnel that uses case studies to attract prospective clients and automatically “warm them” up before they speak to you on a sales call. This warm-up process is commonly referred to as “lead nurturing.”
Here’s a great 7-min video from Hubspot that covers the importance of lead nurturing:
This type of funnel can be highly effective, especially if you have a solid case study that prospects can read (or watch) at the beginning stage of the funnel.
You can also include the case study (or a second related case study) in your automated lead follow-up and nurture email sequences. This is particularly useful for two instances:
- Provide additional social proof right before a prospect is scheduled to jump on a call with you.
- Where your prospect is a no-show for a sales call.
The Case Study Funnel: A solution to addressing the problem of feast and famine in your business
- Craft a compelling in-depth case study
- Build a case study funnel: traffic > case study > qualification > sales call
- Deliver remarkable results (this only works if you can actually deliver!)
- Rinse and repeat (create a compelling case study using the client you just helped – see how this becomes a repeatable system?)
Ready to grow your leads and sales with compelling case studies?
If you’re looking for a way to improve your marketing and sales efforts, look no further than case studies.
Case studies are credible, persuasive, and specific, making them an excellent way to win over new customers. Plus, they’re a great way to build trust and credibility with your audience.
So what are you waiting for? Start creating some case studies today.
Want help with creating compelling case studies? We’ve got you. Here are two ways to tackle this:
- To DIY, read How to Create a Case Study That Converts: The Ultimate Guide for Businesses
- Don’t have much time and prefer an expert to do it for you so that it actually gets done? Check out our done-for-you case study service.
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3 reasons why you need business case studies.
The world of enterprise technologies is a very competitive market, that’s why it’s important to leverage as many communication tools as possible to make your company stand out among the crowd. Most companies initial thought is to employ marketing and public relations efforts including ads, press releases, contributed articles and so on, but one very successful resource that often gets overlooked is the business case study.
Raising brand awareness is the most talked about reason for producing case studies, but it’s not the only reason. There are many overlooked benefits as to why companies should be producing frequent case studies and making this a best practice.
Below are three reasons that highlight why you need business case studies.
1: Internally address challenges and best practices : No matter the technology or product, every enterprise will face challenges. Business case studies can serve as a great before and after tool to help break down and analyze those challenges and the solutions employed to solve them for your IT team.
Although no customer or implementation is always the exact same, business case studies help you gain visibility on a project and see what worked and what you need to change for next time. As you approach situations and customer challenges that are similar, business case studies will allow you to compare and contrast with past implementations. From your case studies you can then build an ongoing best practice guide that your internal team can follow. This will increase your teams productivity by removing the need to start an implementation idea from scratch, saving both time and money.
2: Attract customers : There is no better selling point to prospective customers than having proof of real-world examples of challenges that your company has helped solve. Business case studies reinforce that your product/services work. This increases confidence in a prospective customer choosing between your product/service and a competitor’s.
Additionally, in cases where you are solving a very specific or unique challenge that cannot be easily fixed with a simple solution, case studies can highlight the fact that you are willing to think outside of the box to help a customer solve a problem. It can also serve as a direct proof point that you are actually able to solve your customer’s pain point.
3: Gain more exposure with the media: Case studies are a great resource to start conversations with the media, as you are offering them something rather than asking them for something. Editors have the ability to communicate your key messages to your targeted audiences.
Much like customers, editors resound with customer success stories. Editors are fact-based and case studies show real-world examples that prove your company is a key player in the marketplace. From customers your company has helped to overcoming industry challenges.
Getting a customer angle allows editors to share a tangible, results-oriented story with their readers who might be experiencing similar challenges, rather than just talking about what a product/service could do to help.
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Why Are Case Studies Important? Top 4 Reasons
Updated February 2023: Has a boss or colleague ever asked you, “Why are case studies so important?” This is a question all SaaS marketers must be able to answer, especially when it comes time to create your marketing budget for the year.
SaaS case studies are the #1 marketing tactic to increase sales
The importance of a case study can’t be underestimated. For the second year in a row, SaaS marketers ranked case studies the #1 most effective marketing tactic to increase sales —ahead of general website content, SEO, blog posts, social media and other marketing tactics.
These metrics come from the 123 SaaS marketers we surveyed for our 2023 SaaS Case Studies Trends & Insights Report . (We’d encourage you to check out the report.)
Importance of a case study is undeniable
Why are case studies so important? What is the need and significance of a case study? Case studies are top-tier marketing tools for SaaS companies to showcase the value of their products to potential customers, helping to drive sales and revenue.
Customers are our best marketers. I love getting to know our customers through these stories, especially because documenting their successes helps advance their careers and gives more senior leaders the chance to celebrate their teams.
Why are case studies important in marketing?
Case studies are essentially a play-by-play of how your customer recognized that they had a challenge they needed to overcome, why they chose you, what products or services you provided, and how those products or services helped them solve their challenge.
And what makes case studies even more valuable? They’re a great investment because case studies can be repurposed so heavily —everything from PDFs and videos to infographics to social.
In this post, we’ll demonstrate the importance of a case study in business and discuss the top 4 advantages of using case studies in your marketing mix.
Need a hand with writing case studies? We are a SaaS content marketing agency that specializes in writing case studies for companies like ClickUp, WalkMe and LeanData. Check out our case study writing services .
What are 4 advantages of case studies?
1. case studies demonstrate your expertise in your niche.
As a SaaS marketer, your job is to know how to produce a business case study in a way that makes your product or service stand out among your competitors.
Creating case studies is an effective way to capture the attention of buyers in your industry because the content—including the products, services and use cases covered in the piece—will be highly relevant to your target audience and will therefore have a strong chance of resonating with them.
If you’re still wondering, “Why are case studies important?”, then put yourself in your buyer’s shoes. Say you’re evaluating several different customer relationship management (CRM) platforms. All three vendors have an eye-catching website with informative and clever product copy, but only one has a repository of case studies that illustrate how its clients have landed 50% more sales since they’ve implemented this particular CRM. Sounds like a winner to us (and it demonstrates case study importance)!
Case studies are important because our prospects want to see that we’ve helped customers who are in the same industry and have similar pain points. Reference calls are helpful, but it’s important to have stories that sales folks can share easily.
2. Case studies provide social proof in an original way
What is the importance of a case study? Well, nearly 90% of consumers read product reviews before they make a purchase, which means gathering and publishing social proof is a crucial activity for your SaaS company.
Changing consumer behavior is another reason why case studies are important. Case studies give your readers what they’re looking for, which is confirmation from other B2B buyers just like them that your products and services are the real deal.
Another advantage of case studies is that by nature, they’re original stories about individuals with specific challenges and goals. Knowing how to write a case study that goes beyond generic product reviews is critical.
When writing a case study, dig deep into everything from how your team helps customers implement your software to what your customer’s future use cases could include. This type of content gives your prospect thorough insight into what it’s like to use your products and work with your company.
Case studies offer social proof for how we provide value to our customers. Our sales team uses our case studies to build credibility and offer “proof points” for why (and how) Crossbeam can solve their problems.
3. Case studies help your SaaS company close sales
Let’s quickly recap the last 2 points:
1) Case studies capture your buyers’ attention with highly relevant content that positions your SaaS company as an expert in the products or services you deliver.
2) Case studies also build trust by sharing social proof in an interesting format that uses storytelling to weave a narrative. For those two reasons, case studies are fantastic content marketing tools to help you close sales.
In addition, especially if your offerings are complex, it’s essential to help potential customers understand how your software will meet their needs. Case studies give you an opportunity to explain— with real-world examples and visual aids —the more complicated aspects of your products and services.
Case studies are important because they provide real-life examples of positive customer outcomes and sentiment—a critical part of gaining buy-in from prospects during a sales cycle.
4. Strengthen customer relationships
If you’re hesitant to ask your customers to participate in case studies, you’re not alone. It’s normal to feel like you might be imposing on a customer by asking them to take time out of their busy schedule for an interview, but chances are they’d be happy to help you craft a case study to illustrate your mutual success working together.
When it comes to the question, “Why are case studies important?”, one of the best answers is that they can help you strengthen customer relationships by letting your customers know you believe they have a valuable story. This gesture of goodwill can increase customer retention, which can in turn grow your SaaS company’s revenue by as much as 95% .
Case studies are important because they give you the opportunity to celebrate an existing customer, which in and of itself is of immense value. Secondarily, for both customers and prospects alike, they always prefer to “see someone like them” rather than just hear you spew what-ifs at them.
Need a hand with your case studies ?
Now that you understand why case studies are so important, it’s time to take action—and we can help.
As a SaaS content marketing agency , we write case studies for high-growth B2B SaaS companies like ClickUp, WalkMe and Okta. Check out our case study writing service then get in touch.
As the founder of Uplift Content, Emily leads her team in creating done-for-you case studies, ebooks and blog posts for high-growth SaaS companies like ClickUp, Calendly and WalkMe. Connect with Emily on Linkedin
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Case Study Benefits | Storytelling to Make Your Business Shine
Case studies are a fantastic piece of content to add to your digital marketing strategy . What makes this type of content so different? They bring your audience directly into the customer’s journey with engaging content. They are part sales, part testimonial, and part storytelling. While they take skill to produce, a well-written case study benefits your business brand and marketing goals.
One of the reasons that case studies offer such great ROI is because they are honest. The reality is that the best marketing efforts are sincere. What the case study does a little bit different than other content is it showcases your customer journey, from start to finish. Your audience gets to see how your customers benefitted from your products or services. And it’s written in an engaging way that keeps them entertained.
The case study is effective because it doesn’t rely on gimmicks or fancy sales pitches. In fact, a case study doesn’t even read as marketing. Instead, it gives your audience an inside scoop on the success story you were able to help a client realize.
What is a case study?
While testimonials are helpful, a case study gives you a way to control the messaging for a fuller picture. This way, your team can ask questions from the customer and include data that showcases a positive ROI. With a testimonial, the customer gives a statement or perhaps answers questions. It’s not as engaging and doesn’t show the whole journey.
In a case study, you tell the entire story from start to finish so the audience can clearly see how the process worked. You can add quotes from the subject of your case study and data to help your audience understand their savings, improved productivity, or increased profits. The case study is effective because your decision-maker is engaged emotionally. But they can also see clear data that showcases how their business would benefit from partnering with yours.
What case study benefits make them worth the effort?
There are many benefits to using a case study. When they’re done well, the case study gives concrete examples that your target audience can see. When deciding on the client to feature in your case study, you should consider the target audience . For example, if you want to target more companies in the healthcare industry, make sure your case study features a company in that industry. If your key audience intends to fix a specific problem, say productivity, make sure your case study showcases ROI for productivity. You get the idea. The main benefit is that the case study can be tailored to depict the whole journey for your ideal customer.
What type of benefits do you receive from a case study? They bolster your other marketing campaigns in a few ways.
- They help you build brand trust. Like testimonials, case studies act as a referral. But they are also written engagingly, so they act as marketing. And they also include data, so they entice the decision-makers. Case studies give you a lot of bang for your buck in building trust and transparency with your audience in a strategic way.
- Give your sales team data. Your sales team can use the data from your case studies to help them showcase the ROI when they’re closing deals with your customers.
- Give your sales team helpful content to share. Your sales team can also send case studies that are targeted for contacts to help them increase conversion.
Storytelling tips to make your case study engaging
We said earlier that it takes a good deal of skill to create a case study. This is true. You need to gather information, identify the best company to spotlight, ask them to agree to be interviewed. Then you need to take all of that information and turn it into an engaging journey.
Here are some tips to make sure your case study brings in a high ROI:
- Share your case studies. It would be best if you made your case studies easy to find. You can’t just put them in a small section of your website and expect people to see them. Share them with your email list and on social media. You should also add CTAs to your case studies where appropriate in your content and on your landing pages.
- Make sure you’re capturing the data. One key aspect of a successful case study is that the decision-makers can see how their company will benefit. This is always done through numbers. Percentages of improvement or increased sales. Value is key. It would be best if you highlighted what they stand to gain.
- Make the format easy to skim and read. The design should be as engaging as the content. Make sure that you’re using graphics that are easy to understand and that your format is skimmable while still offering a great story.
- Capture the journey all the way through. Don’t just highlight a few details. Make sure you capture the story from start to finish and highlight how your company solved a problem or created value.
Are you looking for a marketing firm in Arizona to help with your case studies?
Case studies are challenging to create but completely worth the effort for your brand. If you want your case study to engage the audience and truly highlight what your company does best, it’s essential to get this content asset right.
At StatGrow, we offer a full range of content and digital marketing solutions, including professionally created case studies. When we work with clients, we take time to assess their business and understand their mission, to capture the essence of what makes them unique. Contact us today and let us take the lead on developing a case study that truly showcases your business to increase your conversions and your customer base.
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Top Benefits of Case Studies and How to Create Them
A case study is a document that examines a customer's problem point and what your business did to help them resolve it. The case study explains the success the customer experienced because your product or service was used.
It's more than just a step-by-step, "here's what we did" kind of document.
Instead, a case study does a deep dive into the specifics of what the customer's problem was, and what the outcome was due to the work your business did. It's not always necessary to go into the nitty-gritty of the "how to" (after all, that's what you're selling!), but showing proof that your business has generated success is enough to help close a sale.
Top Benefits of Case Studies
Let's dive into a few more top benefits of case studies, and why it really is worth the time investment of putting them together.
1. Social Proof Oftentimes a case study includes the name or business name of your customer, and even a testimonial, sharing their honest review of working with your business. This helps to build social proof; potential customers can read about an experience directly from the mouth of an existing customer. 2. Reusable Marketing Materials Case studies provide your business with marketing materials you can share and promote over and over again. These are great to include on your website as sales material, or use as a lead magnet to incentivize email opt-ins for lead generation and lead nurturing. 3. SEO If you publish your case study as a webpage or blog post on your website, Google and other search engines will be able to index it for keywords and increase your search engine ranking. Some businesses prefer to create their case studies in PDF or white paper format, but smaller, less intensive case studies can certainly be shared on your business blog.
4. Completely Original Content Whereas most business blog posts have been researched and rewritten on several different websites across the industry, a case study that your business creates is completely original and can never be reproduced. Other businesses can create similar case studies, but the core of the content is one hundred percent your own.
How to Create a Case Study
Creating a case study doesn't have to take a ton of time, either. You can put together a seriously compelling case study without a huge investment by following these steps:
1. Determine your case study's format. This goes back to what we discussed under the SEO benefit: your case study can come in multiple shapes and sizes. You can do a micro-case study and publish it on your blog, you can put one into an interactive ebook/workbook form, you can place it in a white paper format, and so on. So first things first, you have to decide what format you want your case study to have, and what tools you're going to need to create it. - Blog Post Case Study: This is a smaller, more top-level case study that you're using as free content to post on your website for both marketing and SEO purposes. - Downloadable Case Study: This is an ebook or white paper that you create in a PDF designer like Adobe Illustrator and email to potential customers, add as a downloadable on your website, or use as a lead magnet. - Video Case Study: You can also create it in an entirely different format and instead utilize video to tell your story. If you have an in-house video production team, this could be extremely effective, especially in social media advertising. - Infographic Case Study: Infographics are also popular methods of sharing case studies and other statistics. These perform well on visual sites like Instagram and Pinterest, and can be a beautiful way to portray your results. Choose which format works best for your business and continue forward! 2. Determine your case study's objective. What are you trying to demonstrate to your potential customers? Which aspect of what your business do you want to focus on? Here are a few possible case study objectives to choose from: - Helping a business become profitable - Lead generation - Increasing revenue - Closing more sales - Lowering overall business costs and more! Choose what you're trying to prove that your business can successfully do (and has successfully done!). 3. Find the right candidate. Out of all your customers, which ones have seen some of the best results, and/or who would be willing to let you do a case study surrounding their partnership with your business? Although it's totally possible to publish an anonymous case study, the most powerful ones have actual numbers, names, and testimonials, so it's essential to discuss this with the customer and get their permission. A few things to think about when finding the perfect case study candidate include: Amazing results that your business has provided Clients/customers who came to you from a competitor Big names or big brands that are recognizable Customers who have a good bit of knowledge about what you do and can speak to that in their quotes/testimonials When reaching out to potential candidates you should be prepared to discuss your plans/goals you have in mind. Your customers will want to know how the case study will be used.
4. Outline your case study. Once you've pinned down your candidate, your objective, and your format, you can start outlining your case study. Write out these points: - Title: Name your case study in a way that highlights the most important points. - Executive Summary: A short and concise paragraph summarizing what your audience will learn from this case study. - Intro to the Subject: A quick introduction to the person or business that is the subject of your case study. - Objectives: A summary of what the subject was hoping to achieve by working with your business. - Your Work: A section detailing what your business did in order to meet those objectives. - Results: A section detailing what the results were of your work, including a testimonial from the subject.
Once you've created your outline, you can flesh it out a bit more, add in supporting quotes, graphs, and other visuals, and publish your case study! Be sure to promote it online to help with your lead generation efforts and bring in new customers! Contact us to see a few of our own case studies.
Written By: David Carpenter
Topics: Sales , Marketing
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From The Blog
The Importance of Case Studies
Case studies are, arguably, one of the most essential components of any marketing or communications strategy. They may take time and effort, but the payoffs are well worth their effort and have been seen time and again, from organizations both big and small.
As Business Analysts, we’re often involved in creating or contributing to case studies, so it is important we understand what they are, the purpose they serve, and the benefits that they can bring.
What Are Case Studies?
In essence, a case study is a report published by a company that highlights its approach to a challenge, the strategy used to solve the issue(s), and the effectiveness of the solution. It presents a holistic, in-depth review with valuable information about the costs involved, the expertise of the company employed, and the benefits achieved.
The Many Benefits of Case Studies
Case studies have a huge range of benefits, from insight to influence. They are used in nearly every industry, from finance to health care and they offer organizations the ability to convert observations into useable data.
But that barely scratches the surface of the many benefits of case studies. Let’s dig a little deeper and look at some of the long-lasting effects that case studies can have.
1. Boost Customer Confidence
Case studies are an excellent way to display your team’s skill and expertise in action. It’s one thing to propose a plan for improvement, or a solution to a challenge, but some customers may be skeptical of your team’s ability to follow through or produce the appealing results you’re promising.
Case studies are exactly the type of proof they need to help push them past skepticism and into belief, and possibly, across the finish line to approval of your partnership. If it’s an internal project, case studies could be enough to convince decision-makers to pursue your solution to a challenge.
2. Improve Brand Awareness and Reputation
The reality of the world today is that every company in every industry has competition. Consumers are also becoming smarter about marketing tactics and messaging, so providing proof and backing up claims is essential for presenting your company as genuine in its promises. That’s where case studies come in.
Case studies are social proof that the promises and claims that your company is making are true. They provide facts and statistics to show how your company improved productivity for your clients by ‘x’ amount, increased profits by ‘x’ amount, or implemented ‘x’ solution to combat a specific issue.
Providing such proof of expertise bolsters your reputation and can increase brand awareness. Case studies can be published and distributed to current customers to remind them of why they partnered with you initially, and can help increase your company’s reputation and brand image as new potential customers discover you.
3. Provide a Strategic Solution
No customer wants to partner with a company that acts erratically or thoughtlessly. Case studies provide insight into real challenges and an in-depth look at how your company goes about solving them. They give you a chance to display your strategic thinking and approach, your expertise and innovation, and your ability to follow through on your promised solution.
4. Assist with Furthering Research
A case study helps show how different aspects of your business work together. They highlight a problem and how the executed solution provided value. They can also play a role in broader research. As you explore and analyze new ideas, other theories and methods can surface. This additional information can help you refine your strategies and further grow the value you provide. Case studies make great reference points that can show, not only how innovative, productive, and proficient your company and teams have become, but how trends have unfolded within your customers and services.
As you can see, case studies play a crucial role in the communication of how your team and you, as a Business Analyst, face challenging situations head-on and provide strategic, value-driven solutions for your customers. Once you have a better understanding of case studies and the deep benefits they provide to you and your brand, it’s easy to justify the time and effort that goes into creating them. As you create your next case study, use it as a reminder to take pride in the hard work you’ve done and the results you’ve achieved.
– Written by Jeremy Aschenbrenner, The BA Guide
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Benefits of case studies
When selling directly to other businesses (B2B), examples of previous successful projects are an increasingly important part of building trust and confidence that you can deliver the best solution for that business's needs.
Case studies represent a focused channel for your business to explain the types of work you're suited to and the businesses that can benefit from your services. By showcasing a real-life example of your team providing a solution to a problem you can highlight your experience and authority as a potential partner for similar businesses. It's for these reasons that case studies represent the perfect opportunity for you to promote your business in a value-added context for B2B buyers.
In this article we'll outline the key components of a business-winning case study and the format you can follow to begin creating your own today.
What is a case study?
A case study is defined as being an up-close and detailed examination of something your business did. It includes a beginning, an explanation of what happened next, and a resolution that explains how the company solved or improved on something. For example, an instance where your business excelled at finding an innovative solution to a new or existing problem.
Throughout your case study, there should be a story that unfolds. This story will consist of introducing your customer, hearing about their problem and having it solved by your product. This is a realistic and relatable way to show customers the benefits and value of your offering and what it can bring.
Extending the storyline and pushing it past the happy quotes, this is what is going to push prospects to buy. Prospects want to know the full journey, they need a context that explains the reasons for the raving review. Explaining the problems, its impact on the client's business and the process that the customer went through from their point of view will allow the reader to relate to the happy customer.
Within the customer's story the relevance and impact of the solution needs to be brought to life. Customers aren't going to be able to relate to a list of features, they are more likely to be able to relate to a customer like them by seeing their problems solved with the features that your product offers. Alter and develop the storyline to showcase the benefits that your product provides.
There is no point trying to persuade a customer to buy from you when you give them no evidence to back up your claims. Weaving in examples of work your brand has done throughout the case study will back up the points being made. Case studies include the word of the customer, but supporting their comments with evidence from your work will reassure the reader about the claims being made.
By including data and analysis in your case study you add value and credibility to the material. It also gives a potential buyer more confidence in you as a solutions provider and builds trust and credibility. Many customers will come to you in the hopes they can achieve similar results, so make sure case studies put your best foot forward.
Power of social proof
The way customers relate to other customers far surpasses the effect words from a marketer can have on anyone. Case studies outline the buyer's journey from their own perspective, this gives customers the reassurance and confidence that other marketing effort wouldn’t achieve. People copy what they see other people doing, why not take advantage of that and showcase case studies of people buying your product?
Transparency within the case study will help the reader to relate more to the character in the story. Presenting minor details that will build up a case for your product would be beneficial. Throughout the buyer's journey including the options that the customer explored but later dismissed would make the story have more credibility.
Case studies are a good way to boost your SEO ranking. The storytelling nature makes it easy to intertwine keywords that are related to your product – this will make your website rank higher in Google searches that contain some of the keywords. Consistently updating and adding new content to the case studies page will maintain your ranking in searches as google will recognise the new and consistent content.
The more you update your case study database the more you'll get from it. Adding more content to your website that is relevant to your product will reinforce to google that you are relevant in your field. These measures all help improve your rank on Google.
Use them to close
Case studies are not only a marketing tool but a very powerful sales tool as well. In the early stages of relationship-building, the sales team can reinforce the solution they're putting forward by including a link to the case study to reassure the prospect.
Case studies are unlike any other marketing technique. They tell a story where your business and solutions are the main character and your clients reinforce your authority in your market. They can be used to attract new prospects, place your business at the forefront of viable options, and even close decision-makers and win new business.
With word-of-mouth as important as ever, it is beneficial to optimise this tool in many different forms. From reviews to testimonials, case studies to referrals, leveraging the voice of the customer can prove to be an untapped sales and marketing resource of the highest value. Case studies give the customer more of a story and provide more influence than testimonials alone – one form of word-of-mouth isn't enough, optimise as many as you can.
Case studies might be overwhelming to think about, especially when you don't know where to start. And that's where we come in to help.
We've put together a free case study template to help you get started. It includes the questions you can ask the customer, and yourself to unravel the story behind your success. Remember to follow the three points below for a captivating case study:
- What was the customer's pre-existing situation?
- Why was this no longer acceptable?
- Where did they go for solutions?
- Which solution was the best?
- Why was it so well suited?
- Why was your business instrumental to success?
- Is the customer happy (in their own words)?
- What did your business like about the solution?
- What data exists to show the positive impact of your solution?
- Did you fix the initial pain point?
Get started creating your own case studies by downloading our free template .
Download your free Case study template
Not sure where to start when writing a case study? This step-by-step guide has you covered.