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How To Create a Compelling Case Study

Last Updated: October 5, 2022

How to write a compelling case study@2x 1

Home » How To Create a Compelling Case Study

Case studies are an important component of website design, yet they tend to have a bad rap.

When many think of them, they think of long, dry, academic content. That doesn’t need to be the case though.

Smart B2B marketers know how to use marketing case studies to their advantage.

By using case studies to focus on:

  • The challenges similar customers have faced
  • The approach the organization took to resolve those challenges
  • The outcomes those challenges provide

They can create an easy to understand way of demonstrating their organizations skills in the real world.

In this guide we’ll be covering:

  • How to use case studies to build consumer trust.
  • How to create effective case studies your prospects can identify with.
  • How to create case studies your sales team will find extremely valuable.

Ready to start leveling up your case studies? Let’s get into it.

CHAPTER ONE

What is a Case Study?

In simple terms, a case study is a story of how one company has helped another company or client.

The story displays your work and outlines your effectiveness and success in solving problems for your clients.

In a case study, the protagonist is the client and the antagonist is the problem that your client is facing. You are the hero of the story who steps in to put an end to their problems. Your case studies should tell a reliable customer story that is also sympathetic to future customers.

What Is a Case Study@2x 1

Effective case studies typically include data related to how your company has bettered its clients. The study will show what you did to achieve those results.

Case studies are powerful marketing tools, but they are more than just that. They help prospective clients see and understand how you have excelled in the past and what you can do for them.

In other words, a case study is not a tool to boost your company’s ego. It is, instead, a relatable story and real-life content that helps your prospective customers see how they can achieve their goals and overcome challenges using your products or services.

CHAPTER Two

Why Write a Case Study?

You may be wondering, why should you spend time learning how to create a case study for your business? Why should you bother writing a case study?

Well, writing case studies has several benefits. Some of the key benefits are as follows:

It Improves Credibility and Trust

According to Marketing Charts, research/case studies are the number one most trusted content type of marketing. Sixty percent of marketers say that target audiences trust case studies.

What does that mean for your business? It means that a compelling case study will make your work more credible and increase your success rate in marketing.

Prospective clients will trust you more when you show them how you have worked with others like them. They will consider you more credible when they see tangible data and real stories that showcase your value.

As your brand becomes more credible in your industry, you will convert more clients and your business’s bottom line will increase. 

It Explains How You Work in an Authentic Way

A well-crafted, compelling case study will give your prospective customers insights into how you authentically solve problems. The case study contains real-life stories that they can connect with.

These, combined with reviews from satisfied customers, will help your prospects see how your products and services are valuable and authentic. In turn, this will grow their confidence in your business and encourage them to convert.

It Is a Huge Help for Your Marketing Team

Snippets of data, customer reviews, and quotes from your case study will help your marketing team create a better marketing strategy. They can use excerpts from these case studies to make compelling testimonials for your homepage, landing pages, services pages, and so on.

It Is a Huge Help for Your Marketing Team@2x 1

There is an endless list of marketing content that you, as a content marketer, can create using direct quote, data, and information from your case studies. They can repurpose the information in the case studies into different content formats like blog posts, social media posts, videos, infographics, Facebook advertising, and PDFs.

These, among others, will help your company build a flywheel effect from your online marketing efforts.

jack square

“Case studies are one of the most important marketing and sales tools out there. Not only do they showcase your past work, but they can be easily deployed to leads in relevant industries to show a whole host of information in an easily digestible format – timeline, pricing, unique features, results, etc. All of this paints an at-a-glance “what can this agency do for me too” picture for the lead.”

– Jack Morrin, Sales Coordinator

It Will Help You Close More Deals

Customer experience is everything. While writing case studies, you will engage with past customers on their experiences with your product or service. This offers your business the rare opportunity to reaffirm why these customers chose you in the first place. One of the best ways to show potential customers why your product or service is the right choice is through telling the story of how it has helped past customers.

Consequently, they become more loyal to your brand and keep choosing you. In other words, case studies are very effective for retaining old customers.

Moreover, your salespeople can share success stories as case studies from a previously satisfied customer with potential customers to gain their confidence and build trust. These prospects are likely to pique interest in your product or service and convert.

So, effective case studies also help you generate leads and convert new clients. Whether you’re interested in old or new clients, case studies are effective tools for closing more deals.

CHAPTER Three

How To Write a Simple Case Study

You’re now convinced that your business should be writing case studies. But how is this done? Where should you start? How long should your case studies be? What are the things you should pay attention to?

The best way to learn how to write your case study is to take a look at some business case study examples and use some case study templates. This will give you an idea of ​​the design and format that are most effective. You can also find some design tips on how to write your case study in the sections that follow.

Remember that every business is different, so make sure to tailor your case study to your specific business.

How Long Should a Case Study Be?

How Long Should a Case Study Be@2x

The ideal length of case studies varies across different industries. In some industries, a picture is worth more than a thousand words.

For instance, if you can tell the entire story with pictures. Conversely, software invoicing companies must rely on words to tell their story.

That being said, 500-1500 of your own words should be sufficient for most industries to write a compelling case study.

If you don’t have up to 500 words, it should mean that your pictures, customer quotes, and data are doing the talking for you. If you have more than 1,500 words, make sure there is no irrelevant or redundant information.

Your case study should contain a snapshot section with 100 or fewer words. Moreover, the bulk of your word count should be in the benefits and results section.

Case Study Formats

There are a few different types of case study formats, but the most popular one is the Harvard format. This type of case study uses a very specific structure, which includes an introduction, main body, and conclusion. The Harvard format is very concise and to the point, which makes it easy for readers to follow.

Another popular type of case study format is the American Psychological Association (APA) format. This type of case study is similar to the Harvard format, but it uses slightly different headings and citations. The APA format is also very concise and easy to read. The key points of the APA format are:

  • Use of headings to organize information;
  • Use of in-text citations to credit sources;
  • Use of a reference list at the end of the case study.

There is the Modern Language Association (MLA) format, which is less common than the other two formats. The MLA format is more detailed and includes more information in the body of the paper. However, it can be difficult to follow for some readers.

There are many other types of case study format, each with its own advantages and disadvantages including:

  • The report format is the most traditional and straightforward, and it is often used in academic settings.
  • The one-page format is concise and easy to read, making it a good choice for business settings.
  • The video format is becoming increasingly popular, as it allows readers to see the results of the case study in action.
  • The infographic case study format is also gaining popularity, as it makes complex data easier to understand.

Ultimately, the best type of case study format will vary depending on the needs of the reader.

The Difference Between White Paper and Case Study

A case study is an in-depth examination of a single subject, such as a person, company, event, or project. It typically includes research into the subject’s background and development over time. A study outline can help to define the parameters of the case study and provide a structure for the research process.

A white paper, on the other hand, is a document that presents a problem and proposes a solution. White papers are often used in politics and business. They may be persuasive in nature, or they may simply present information. Unlike case studies, white papers do not typically include extensive research. Rather, they focus on a specific issue and offer a proposed course of action.

A thesis statement is the main point or argument you are trying to make in a paper. A thesis statement should be clear and concise, and it should assert a position or provide an interpretation of an issue. A thesis statement is not a fact or observation. While it may be possible to write a paper without a thesis statement, it would be very difficult to do so. A thesis statement provides direction for a paper, and it helps to keep the reader focused on the main idea.

Business Case Study Format

A business case study is a written record of the events that occurred within a company or organization over a certain period of time. It typically includes an analysis of the situation and recommendations for future action.

The format of a business case study can vary depending on the purpose it is meant to serve. However, most case studies follow a similar structure, and the table of contents typically includes an introduction, background information, discussion of the issue at hand, and recommendations. The length of a business case study can also vary, but they are typically several pages long.

There are many different types of business case study format. The three most common are the single-company case study, the comparative case study, and the multiple-company case study.

  1. A company case study provides an in-depth look at a single company. This type of case study is often used to examine new or innovative products or services, or to investigate a company’s organizational structure or management style.
  2. Comparative case studies compare two or more companies in order to identify best practices or to examine how different approaches to business produce different results.
  3. Multiple-company case studies take an even broader view, evaluating the strategies and practices of several companies in order to identify common themes and patterns.

Whatever the specific focus, all business case studies share a common goal: to provide insights that can be used to improve business operations and enhance competitiveness.

CHAPTER four

The Anatomy of the Perfect Case Study

A perfect case study approach has certain features that make it highly effective. Read on to find out these features and why you must pay attention to them.

1. Start With a Results-Driven Headline

The first feature you must pay attention to is your headline. Just like newspaper headlines, your case study headline should present the most vital information of the whole story.

You can add a subtitle that contains a customer quote or other supporting details if you so desire. 

Remember that your headline is the first thing that readers come in contact with. As such, your headline should define, in very clear terms, what you did and the impact it made. 

Luseta Beauty@2x

Our case study for the services we rendered to Luseta Beauty has the headline – Luseta Beauty Website Redesign

That headline captures the most important information about the project. At a glance, the reader can tell that the case study is about a website redesign project we did for a client, called Luseta Beauty.

2. Create a Concise Snapshot of the Project

Some readers will consider your case study too long to read. You should, therefore, create a concise snapshot for these readers at the beginning of your case study.

The snapshot should contain the name of your client/industry, the product or service you used for them, and quick statistics or high-level data of the results.

Who knows, the snapshot may even encourage the TLDR reader to continue reading your case study.

AgAmerica@2x

Our case study for the services we rendered to AgAmerica contains a concise snapshot.

We stated the client’s name, talked about their mission and stated what we did for them. The result, according to the snapshot, was that they were able to meet their business goal.

3. Introduce the Client

The reader wants to know more about your client. Who are they? Who are their clients? Where do they sit in the market? This background information helps define the objectives of the project.

What’s more, prospective clients can relate better to the story when they see how they are similar to your past client.

Protip

Your sales team can also use this section to easily find related marketing case study examples for the current target audience they are working alongside.

Gleamin@2x

Our case study for Gleamin Website Redesign contains a brief introduction of the client in the snapshot.

Further, in the objectives section, we stated where Gleamin was and what they were looking for. The reader can easily see that Gleamin serves customers on Shopify and they wanted to increase their visibility, among other things.

4. Identify the Problem and Challenges

Explain concisely the problem and challenges the client was facing. Make sure to present this information in a simple way that prospective clients can understand and relate to.

Quotes will come in handy in this section of your case study.

TripleSeat@2x

We wrote a case study for Tripleseat’s project.

The case study contains a section titled Unique Problems to Solve. Readers can tell at a glance that Tripleseat had two problems that we wanted to help them solve.

They had a challenge with navigation and they wanted up-to-date information that highlights the company as best as possible.

5. Describe the Solution

After identifying the problem and challenges, you should let readers know which of your services or products solved the problem.

Explain the services you rendered or the products you supplied. Then, show your readers how they solved the problem effectively for the client.

Dwight Funding@2x

Our case study for Dwight Funding is a perfect example of this.

There is a “What we did” section in the case study. We listed the services that we used to help solve their problems. You should do the same in your case studies.

6. Display the Results

Your job is not done until you show how the solutions you offered positively impacted the client. People want to see your results before they can trust your product or service.

Describe the outcomes or results you achieved and any bonus benefits they received. You can include quotes in this section.

Centivo@2x 1

Our Centivo case study contains a list of the services we rendered.

Some of the items on this list are clickable links. When you click the link, you will see the unique ways we solve clients’ problems. After that section, we demonstrate with pictures how Centivo benefited from our services.

7. Conclusion

In concluding your case study, share more positive reviews from the client. Include quotes from these customers, advising other businesses and people like them.

Tie these all together with a Call to Action (CTA). Let prospective clients know how to contact your company and make inquiries about your products or services.

Extensis@2x 1

Our Extensis HR case study ends with a Call to Action where we ask those who want to create an amazing website to contact us.

Your concluding paragraph should contain something like this, too.

Bonus Points

You can add strategic social proof in the form of reviews and testimonials from the client within your case studies. 

HeForShe@2x 1

Our case study of Heforshe’s website redesign contains several bonus points and testimonials.

Go beyond the points we have raised and give your readers other vital information about how you solved your client’s problems.

CHAPTER five

Wrap Up!

Case studies are indeed great tools to use within sales meetings, as well as a way to show what your company does best. But, remember that consistency is key.

One case study is not enough; you must be consistent in writing case studies for all your projects. When you complete a project for a client, show it off through a case study!

Show the world what you know and how good you are at what you do.

Write a case study to celebrate your company’s successes!

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CHAPTER six

Case Study Best Practices

Here are some best practices and further info on case study design, web development and website design in general. If you have further questions, don’t hesitate to reach out.

Case Study FAQ

Questions about how to create a case study? We try to answer them here.

What is an example of a case study?

A web design case study example shows how a particular website was designed and what techniques were used to create it. Case studies can be helpful for web designers who are looking for new ideas or want to see how a particular design was executed. They can also be helpful for website owners who want to understand the process behind designing and developing their website.

When looking at a web design case study, it is important to consider the following factors:

  • The goals of the website and how they were achieved.
  • The layout and design of the website.
  • The use of images, videos, and other multimedia content.
  • The use of typography and other design elements.
  • The overall user experience of the website.

What are the five steps to write a case study?

The best business case study examples involve a detailed examination of a specific subject, such as a person, company, event, or product. To write a case study, you will need to collect and analyze evidence pertaining to your topic. In most cases, you will also want to interview individuals who are knowledgeable about your subject. Here are five steps to writing an effective case study:

  1. Select your subject. You will need to select a specific subject for your case study. For example, you may choose to examine the marketing campaigns of a particular company, or you may focus on the experience of a specific individual.
  2. Gather evidence. Once you have selected your subject, you will need to collect evidence pertaining to your case. This may include data, such as sales figures or customer satisfaction surveys. You may also want to collect interviews from individuals who are knowledgeable about your subject.
  3. Analyze your evidence. Once you have gathered all of your evidence, you will need to analyze it in order to draw conclusions about your case. This may involve using statistical analysis or other research methods.
  4. Write your report. After you have analyzed your evidence, you will need to write up your findings in the form of a report or paper. This report should be well-organized and well-written in order to be effective.
  5. Prepare a presentation. In some cases, you may also be required to give a presentation on your findings. This presentation should be clear and concise, and it should present your findings in an engaging way.

Whether you need to create a case study for your Shopify store or your WooCommerce website, these tips apply equally.

What is the best format for a case study?

Many businesses use case studies to promote their products or services. A case study is an in-depth look at a particular project or problem, and how it was solved. When done correctly, a case study can be an extremely useful marketing tool that creates brand awareness and attracts potential customers. However, there is no one-size-fits-all answer when it comes to the best format for a case study. The key is to tailor the case study to your audience and your goals.

For example, if you are trying to sell a new product, you will want to focus on how that product helped solve a specific problem. On the other hand, if you are trying to build brand awareness, you may want to focus on a project that generated a lot of media attention.

Ultimately, the best format for a case study will vary depending on your specific goals.

What are the 4 most important parts of case study?

When writing a case study, it is important to focus on four key elements: the problem, the solution, the results and the takeaway.

  1. The problem section should include a search method that should provide background information on the situation and identify the challenges that need to be addressed.
  2. The solution section should describe how the problem was addressed and discuss the steps that were taken to implement the solution.
  3. The results section should document the outcomes of the case study and discuss the positive impact that was achieved.
  4. The takeaway section should provide insights and lessons that can be applied to similar situations in the future.

By focusing on these four key elements, you can ensure that your case study is both informative and instructive.

How To Write a Case Study Report?

A case study report is a document that synthesizes the findings of a case study. It should provide a clear and concise overview of the study, including its methodology, results, and conclusions. The report should also offer recommendations for further action or research.

Case study reports are usually written to accompany a particular research project and are used to generate new knowledge or explore new areas of interest.

This could be done through interviews, surveys, or even observations. The goal of a case study report is to present a realistic and objective analysis of the problem(s).

In order to write a successful case study report, you must first identify the main issue or problems. Once you have done this, you will need to gather evidence to support your analysis. The research method could include data from interviews, surveys, observations, or other sources. Once you have collected this evidence, you will need to analyze it in order to identify patterns and relationships. Finally, you will need to write up your findings in a clear and concise manner.

A well-written case study report can be an extremely useful tool for solving complex problems.

Which is better, WooCommerce or Shopify?

When comparing WooCommerce vs Shopify, there is no clear winner. Each platform has pros and cons, and it comes down to what matters most to you and what you are trying to do with your store. Whether you have a B2B ecommerce website or a beauty brand, you’ll need to dig in deep to understand each ecommerce platform and what it offers. Our article comparing WooCommerce and Shopify is a good place to start.

Can you redesign my website, including the checkout page?

Yes, website redesign is one of our primary specialties. No matter which ecommerce site you’re on, we can redesign your entire site, including the about us page, checkout page, product pages, category pages, and blog.

Further Reading On Website Design and Development.

Looking for web development and design inspiration? These articles should help.

Meet The Author

Jeff Gapinski is the President of Huemor where he helps plan the long-term strategic growth of the agency. Jeff is passionate about UI/UX, demand generation, and digital strategy.

Originally Published

May 19, 2022

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