4 Reasons You Should Be Using Case Studies
Case studies are a great example of marketing collateral that any business should consider using for various reasons. Let’s review a few of these reasons, then cover what a case study should provide and how to put it to use.
What Makes a Case Study Valuable?
A case study is an account of a real-life example of your services in action, outlining the experience that one of your clients had working with you. It starts with the challenges they were encountering and ends with the results your work ultimately allowed them to enjoy, outlining the process between these two points.
In short, it’s a peek into what a prospective client can expect from a professional relationship with you and your business.
The nature of a case study makes it a powerful tool for you to use in your marketing. For instance:
They Show Proof of Your Skills
Frankly, this is one of the most critical things any of your marketing initiatives need to accomplish, but case studies provide you with a particular opportunity to do so.
Let’s put it this way: you could talk all day about what your services can enable your clients to do, the problems you can help them solve, and the results they can expect, and it could do little to nothing to impact their decision to work with you. After all, they’re almost certainly hearing the same pitch from their other candidates if they're shopping around. A case study puts your process into context, demonstrating a bad situation and how you fixed it. This approach gives your capabilities the spotlight, supporting the claims your marketing makes.
On top of that, the case study helps give your prospect an idea of what to expect as the service is being delivered. With the problem and the journey to solve it laid out in black and white, your case study forges what your prospects can expect when they receive your services.
They Establish Your Experience
Additionally, a collection of case studies helps to demonstrate that you have encountered various situations before and have a history of delivering in equally various circumstances. Try to select clients that once had a diverse set of issues and needs you solved and fulfilled through your services, and ask them if they’re willing to share their stories with others.
By covering a wide array of scenarios, you increase the chance of a case study that resonates with a reader’s needs and leaves a meaningful impact.
They Give Practical Examples of Your Results
It’s one thing to tell your clients how great your services are. Of course, you’ll say that… you’re trying to sell them those services. A case study helps to insert some objectivity into these statements by introducing a third party that saw actual, real-life results from your efforts.
Their words will likely be one of the most inherently trustworthy elements of your case study, so you’ll want to focus on where they were coming from beforehand. By contrasting a client’s experience before receiving your services to what they experience after, you can delineate what your services provide.
They Help You Develop a Positive Reputation
Similarly, case studies can be used to show that your services aren’t just a cookie-cutter assortment of quick fixes and half-measures. By producing multiple case studies that cover a range of your services, you can prove how well you can handle various needs and circumstances.
Put yourself in the shoes of your prospects. At least at first, they will be most concerned with the return on investment they can expect from your services. A case study effectively outlines this ROI in a real-life situation—helping you build a reputation for delivering on your promises.
What Does a Good Case Study Offer?
If you’ve made it this far, you’re hopefully interested enough in the benefits of a case study to want to explore producing some for your own benefit. What follows are some recommendations to help make your case study as effective and impactful as possible.
One of the reasons that a case study is so effective is the specificity that the good ones offer. Instead of describing the scope of all your services and their benefits to any business, a case study identifies a single industry and demonstrates how its very specific needs can be met by your services by showing the benefits that one recognizable business has already enjoyed.
It Outlines the Problem-Solving Your Business Does
This specificity also helps in the way that a case study describes the process your business follows. Not only does it address an issue that is common in a particular industry, but it does so in a way that takes the reader through the entire process and demonstrates each step your business will take.
It Involves Quotes
People love to see quotes, and they’re very impactful. After all, they’re someone you’ve delivered a service to speaking on their experience. If someone speaks well about your business as you’re providing them a service, make sure to ask them if you can quote them directly.
Taking the time to make your case study look attractive will go a long way to getting it read and its messages absorbed, because people will be more likely to to engage with it. Which would you be more likely to trust, a document that someone clearly invested time in producing, or a few notes typed out and printed on a blank piece of paper?
How Can You Use Case Studies to Your Advantage?
There are plenty of applications wherein you can use a case study to help benefit your marketing. Having them available for download from your website is a great starting point, as it also gives you fodder to use in other marketing initiatives. A postcard, targeted email series, or social media posts helps to direct your audience back to your website to download a case study (and learn more while they’re there). Alternatively, you could include them in any mailings you send out, or as leave-behind deliverables when you visit a prospect’s office.
We Can Help You Create and Utilize Case Studies
Check out our case study creation service for more information, or at least some more ideas. Naturally, you can always reach out to us at 888-546-4384 for more information, or to get the ball rolling.