Many companies work with their happy clients to develop case studies. Case studies can provide powerful attestations to the positive ways in which a business’s product or service has impacted a customer’s life, solved their problems or benefited them. When smartly leveraged, a case study can be a great marketing tool.
There are several steps to a successful case study, ranging from finding the right client to participate to providing persuasive details to sharing the story in the best places. Below, nine members of Business Journals Leadership Trust share their expert advice on developing compelling case studies and marketing them to your advantage.
1. Showcase success stories.
Case studies illustrate the value your company provides to its clients. By showcasing success stories, you validate your business and the service you provide, making them a powerful tool for your sales process. Case studies allow prospective clients to see themselves in your client’s shoes and picture how your product or service will help with whatever need or pain point they’re experiencing. – Melea McRae, Crux KC
2. Host a live discussion.
One of the best types of case studies is a live “food for thought” dinner session, which can easily be conducted via Zoom sessions. Inviting a VIP customer, analyst and select media to a discussion is welcome and genuine. So few people do this, and you will build lasting relationships. – Donna Michaels, LMGPR
3. Show how you solve problems.
Use a case study to demonstrate how you are solving your prospects’ problems. When your target market sees the success your solution provides to their peers, you are likely to gather more market share than you had anticipated. – Rachel Namoff, Arapaho Asset Management
4. Share meaningful cases.
Make sure that the case study is relevant and means something to your client. How will they view it — as a marketing tactic or as truly something beneficial for their business? Think of it in terms of whether they’ll pass it up to a superior and use it as a basis to improve their business. If so, then you’re on the right track. – David Wescott, Transblue
5. Stick with the highlights.
Case studies are very important for businesses to be able to present their success stories and for other consumers to relate to brands that you have successfully worked with. However, don’t present too much data or text on a case study, as this will overwhelm your audience. Stick with the topline numbers or the campaign headline to effectively get your point across. – Jessica Hawthorne-Castro, Hawthorne Advertising
6. Showcase your expertise and customer care.
Case studies can be a brilliant way to showcase the customer experience and the value a company can provide. By showcasing the expertise and care a company can offer and giving real-life experiences that future potential customers can identify with, you have a formula for helping illustrate what life could be like. Creating a few case studies ensures one matches a variety of potential customers. – Kimberly Janson, Janson Associates
7. Develop a diverse library of cases.
Create a library of case studies that’s diverse when it comes to project type and industry. Many times, companies come to us looking for specific results from our work in a specific industry and project type, so it’s nice to have that information readily available. Also, be sure to keep your case studies very visible — we’ve had prospects come to us after finding our case studies through a Google search. – Jamie Anderson, Emergent Software
8. Focus on the study’s results.
A case study has to be about results, not about what makes your business better than the competition. When someone reads your case study and finds key takeaways they can apply in their own business, you’ve demonstrated the value of your brand without having to say it. – Jen Vargas, JVComms
9. Share them across multiple channels.
Case studies help build brand trust and demonstrate your ability to deliver high-quality solutions or products. Use case studies on your website, in newsletters, in pitches or proposals, and so on — the channels that work best for your target audience. Most importantly, understand the specific needs of your prospects, and as you nurture those relationships, share the case studies that match their needs. – Todd Marks, Mindgrub