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How To Create a Compelling Case Study

Last Updated: June 28, 2022

How to write a compelling case study@2x 1

Home » How To Create a Compelling Case Study

Case studies 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 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 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

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 in their marketing efforts. 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 your marketing team can create using quotes, data, and information from your case studies. They can repurpose the information in the case studies into blog posts, social media posts, videos, infographics, and PDFs.

These, among others, will help your company build a flywheel effect from your 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

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.

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 these case studies from a previous satisfied customer with potential customers to gain their confidence. These prospects are likely to pique interest in your product or service and convert.

So, case studies also help you 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 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?

We will answer these and other questions in the sections that follow. Read on if you want a step-by-step guide on how to get started with writing compelling case studies for your business along with business case study examples.

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.

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 we redesigned 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 relating marketing case study examples for their current target audience they are working along side.

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.

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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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.

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