Earning the trust of prospective customers can be a struggle. Before you even begin to anticipate to earn their business, you need to demonstrate your ability to deliver about what your product or service claims.
Sure, you could say that you’re great at X, or that you’re way ahead of the competition when it comes to Y. But at the end of the day, what you really need to earn new business is cool, hard proof.
One of the best ways to verify your worth is through a compelling case study. In fact , HubSpot’s 2020 State of Advertising report found that they are so compelling they are the fifth most often used type of content used by marketers.
Below, I’ll walk a person through what a example is, how to get ready for writing one, what you should include in it, and exactly how it can be an effective tactic. To jump to different areas of this post, click on the links below to automatically scroll.
Case Study Definition
How to Write an instance Study
Methods to Format a Case Study
Business Case Study Examples
Presenting Your Work
case study templates for creating your own. Get them using the form above, after which get creating utilizing the steps below.
1 . Get started with case study templates.
Telling your customer’s story is a sensitive process — you need to highlight their achievement while naturally integrating your business into their tale.
If you’re simply getting started with case research, we recommend you download HubSpot’s Example Templates. Included are three plain-text plus three designed themes to explain how your customers thrived while using your own product or service.
2 . Determine the case study’s objective.
All business case studies are designed to show the value of your services, but they can focus on several different client objectives.
Your first step when writing a case study is to determine the aim or goal of the subject you’re offering. In other words, what will the client have succeeded within doing by the end from the piece?
The customer objective you focus on will depend on what you want to prove to your future clients as a result of publishing this case study.
Your own case study can concentrate on one of the following customer objectives:
- Complying with government regulation
- Lowering business costs
- Becoming profitable
- Generating more leads
- Closing on more customers
- Producing more revenue
- Expanding into a new market
- Progressively more sustainable or high efficiency
3. Establish a case study medium.
Next, you’ll figure out the medium by which you’ll create the case study. In other words, how can you tell this story?
Case research don’t have to be easy, written one-pagers. Using different media in your case study can allow you to definitely promote your final piece on different channels. For example , while the written case study might just live on your website and obtain featured in a Facebook post, you can publish an infographic example on Pinterest, along with a video case study on your own YouTube channel.
Here are some different case study mediums to consider:
Written Case Study
Consider writing this particular case study in the form of a good ebook and transforming it to a downloadable PDF. Then, door the PDF at the rear of a landing page and form for visitors to fill out prior to downloading the item, allowing this case study to generate leads for the business.
Movie Case Study
Intend on meeting with the client and shooting an interview. Seeing the subject, in person, discuss the service a person provided them can go a long way in the eye of your potential customers.
Infographic Case Study
Use the long, top to bottom format of an infographic to tell your achievement story from top to bottom. As you progress down the infographic, emphasize major KPIs using bigger text and charts that show the successes your client has had since working with you.
Podcast Case Study
Podcasts really are a platform for you to possess a candid conversation together with your client. This type of example can sound more real and human to your audience — they’ll know the collaboration between you and your customer was a genuine achievement.
4. Find the correct case study candidate.
Writing about your previous projects requires a lot more than picking a client plus telling a story. You require permission, quotes, plus a plan. To start, here are a few things to look for in potential candidates.
It helps to select a customer who’s well-versed within the logistics of your product or service. That way, he or she can much better speak to the value of that which you offer in a way that is practical for future customers.
Clients that have seen the best results are going to make the most powerful case studies. If their own businesses have experienced an exemplary ROI from your product or service, most are more likely to convey the particular enthusiasm that you want prospective customers to feel, as well.
One a part of this step is to select clients who have skilled unexpected success from your product or service. Whenever you’ve provided non-traditional customers — within industries that you don’t usually work with, for example — with positive results, it will help to remove doubts from prospects.
While small companies can have powerful stories, bigger or more notable brands tend to lend credibility to your own. Actually 89% of consumers state they’ll buy from a brand they already recognize over a competitor, especially if they already adhere to them on social media marketing.
Customers that reached you after working with a competitor help highlight your competitive advantage, and may even sway decisions to your advantage.
5. Get in touch with your candidate with regard to permission to write about them.
To get the example candidate involved, you need to set the phase for clear and open communication. Which means outlining expectations plus a timeline right away — not having those is one of the biggest culprits in delayed case study creation.
Most importantly at this time, however , is getting your subject’s approval. When first reaching out to your own case study candidate, provide them with the case study’s goal and format — both of which you should have come up with in the very first two steps over.
To get this initial permission from the subject, put your self in their shoes — what would they need out of this case study? Even though you’re writing this for your own company’s advantage, your subject will be far more interested in the benefit it has for them .
Benefits to provide Your Case Study Applicant
Here are four potential benefits you are able to promise your example candidate to gain their approval.
Brand name Exposure
Show your subject who this case study will be exposed to, and how this particular exposure can help enhance their brand awareness both in and beyond their own industry. In the B2B sector, brand consciousness can be hard to gather outside one’s personal market, making situation studies particularly useful to a client looking to increase their name’s reach.
Allow your subject to provide rates with credits to specific employees. Whenever this is an option to all of them, their brand isn’t really the only thing expanding its reach — their employees can get their own name out there, as well. This presents your subject with social networking and career-development possibilities they might not have otherwise.
Product Low cost
This is a a lot more tangible incentive you can offer your case study candidate, especially if they’re a current customer associated with yours. If they concure with be your subject matter, offer them an item discount — or free trial of another product — as a thank-you for their help creating your example.
Backlinks and Website Traffic
Here is a benefit that is sure to resonate with your subject’s marketing team: In case you publish your case study to your website, and your study links back to your own subject’s web site — known as a “backlink” — this little gesture can give them website traffic from guests who click through to your subject’s site.
Additionally , the backlink from you increases your own subject’s page power in the eyes of Google. This helps all of them rank more extremely in search engine outcomes and collect traffic from readers that are already looking for details about their industry.
6. Case study email template.
Once your case study candidate approves of your example, it’s time to deliver them a release form.
A case study release form tells you what you’re looking for from your chosen subject matter, like permission to use any brand names and promote the project details publicly. Kick off this method with an email that will runs through exactly what they can expect from you, as well as what you need from their website. To give you an idea associated with what that might appear like, check out this example email:
You might be asking yourself, “What’s a Case Study Release Form? ” or, “What’s successful Story Letter? inch Let’s break those people down.
Case Study Release Form
This document can differ, depending on factors like the size of your business, the nature of your function, and what you intend to do with the case studies once they are finished. That said, you should typically aim to include the subsequent in the Case Study Launch Form:
- A clear explanation of why you are creating this case study and how it will probably be used.
- A statement defining the info and potentially trademarked information you expect to incorporate about the company — things like names, logos, job titles, and pictures.
- An explanation of what you expect from your participant, beyond the completion of the case study. For example , is this client willing to act as the reference or reveal feedback, and do you might have permission to pass contact information along for these purposes?
- A note about compensation.
Success Story Notice
As noted in the sample email, this document serves as an outline for the entire case study process. Other than a brief explanation of how the customer will benefit from example participation, you’ll want to make sure to define the following measures in the Success Story Letter.
The particular Acceptance
Initial, you’ll need to receive inner approval from the industry’s marketing team. As soon as approved, the Release Type should be signed and returned to you. It is also a good time to determine the timeline that satisfies the needs and abilities of both groups.
To ensure that you do have a productive interview — which is one of the best ways to collect information for the case study — you’ll want to ask the participator to complete a questionnaire prior to this discussion. That will provide your own team with the required foundation to organize the interview, and get the most out of it.
The particular Interview
Once the questionnaire is completed, somebody on your team should reach out to the participator to schedule a 30- to 60-minute interview, which should include a series of custom questions associated with the customer’s experience with your product or service.
The Draft Evaluation
After the example is composed, you’ll want to deliver a draft to the customer, allowing an opportunity to provide you with feedback and edits.
The Final Approval
Once any kind of necessary edits are usually completed, send the revised copy from the case study to the customer to get final approval.
Once the case study goes live — in your website or elsewhere — it’s best to contact the customer with a link to the page in which the case study lives. Don’t be afraid to ask your participants to share these links with their own networks, since it not only demonstrates your ability to deliver good success, but their impressive growth, as well.
7. Ensure you asking the right questions.
Before you execute the questionnaire plus actual interview, make sure you’re setting your self up for success. A powerful case study results from getting prepared to ask the correct questions. What do all those look like? Here are a few examples to get you started:
- What do you think are the most effective goals?
- Exactly what challenges were you experiencing prior to purchasing our product or service?
- What made our service or product stand out against our competitors?
- What did your decision-making process look like?
- How have you gained from using our service or product? (Where applicable, at all times ask for data. )
Keep in mind that the questionnaire is designed to help you gain insights directly into what sort of strong, success-focused questions to ask during the actual interview. And once you get to that will stage, we advise that you follow the “Golden Rule of Interviewing. ” Sounds fancy, right? It’s actually quite simple — ask open-ended questions.
For anyone who is looking to craft the compelling story, “yes” or “no” solutions won’t provide the information you need. Focus on queries that invite decoration, such as, “Can you describe…? ” or, “Tell me regarding… ”
The interview structure, all of us recommend categorizing the questions and stream into six specific sections that will reflect a successful case study format. Combined, they’ll permit you to gather enough details to put together a rich, comprehensive study.
Open with the customer’s business.
The goal of this section is to produce a better understanding of you can actually current challenges plus goals, and how they can fit into the landscape of their industry. Sample questions might include:
- How long have you been running a business?
- How many workers do you have?
- What are some of the objectives of the department at this time?
Cite a problem or pain point.
In order to tell a compelling story, you will need context. That helps match up the customer’s require with your solution. Small sample questions might include:
- What difficulties and objectives led you to look for a alternative?
- What may have happened if you failed to identify a solution?
- Did you explore other solutions prior to this that failed to work out? If so, what happened?
Discuss your decision process.
Discovering how the customer arrived at the decision to work with a person helps to guide potential customers through their own decision-making processes. Sample questions might include:
- How did you hear about our product or service?
- Who was involved in the selection process?
- What was most important to you when evaluating your options?
Explain how a solution was applied.
The focus here should be placed on the particular customer’s experience during the onboarding process. Small sample questions might include:
- How long did it take to get up plus running?
- Do that meet your own expectations?
- Who had been involved in the process?
Explain how the answer works.
The goal of this section is to much better understand how the customer is using your product or service. Sample questions might include:
- Is there a particular aspect of the product or even service that you depend on most?
- Who might be using the product or service?
End with the results.
In this area, you want to uncover amazing measurable outcomes — the more numbers, the greater. Sample questions might include:
- How s the product or services helping you save time and increase efficiency?
- In what methods does that enhance your competitive advantage?
- How much have you improved metrics X, Y, and Z?
8. Lay out your own case study format.
When it comes time to consider all of the information you might have collected and actually turn it into something, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed. Exactly where should you start? Exactly what should you include? Precisely the best way to structure it?
To help you get the handle on this phase, it’s important to first understand that there is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to the ways you can present a case study. They may be very visual, which you’ll see in some from the examples we’ve integrated below, and can occasionally be communicated mainly through video or photos, with a little bit of accompanying text.
When laying out your case study, concentrate on conveying the information get gathered in the the majority of clear and succinct way possible. Make it simple to scan and understand, and be sure to provide an attractive call-to-action at the end — that should offer readers an opportunity to find out more about your product or service.
9. Publish and promote your case study.
Once you’ve completed your own case study, it’s time to publish and publicize it. Some case study forms have pretty obvious promotional outlets — a video case study can embark upon YouTube, just as a good infographic case study can embark upon Pinterest.
Yet there are still other ways to create and promote your case study. Here are a couple of concepts:
Gated Behind a Blog Post
As stated earlier in this article, written case research make terrific lead-generators if you convert them into a downloadable structure, like a PDF. To generate leads from your example, consider writing the blog post that shows an abbreviated story of your client’s success and requesting readers to fill in a form with their title and email address when they’d like to see the rest in your PDF.
Then, promote this blog post on social media, through a Facebook post or a tweet.
Published like a Page on Your Website
As a developing business, you might need to display your case study away in the open to gain the particular trust of your customers.
Rather than gating it behind a landing page, publish your case study to its very own page on your internet site, and direct individuals here from your home page with a “Case Studies” or “Testimonials” button along your homepage’s top navigation pub.
this case study is the way it leads using the customer. This reflects a major HubSpot credo, which is to at all times solve for the customer first. The copy leads with a brief description of precisely why Shopify uses HubSpot, and is accompanied by a short video and some simple statistics on the organization.
Notice that this particular case study uses mixed-media. Yes, there is a short video, but they have elaborated upon within the additional text for the page. So , whilst case studies may use one or the other, you afraid to combine written copy with pictures to emphasize the project’s success.
a few. “Designing the Future of Metropolitan Farming, ” simply by IDEO
Here is a design company that will knows how to business lead with simplicity in the case studies. As soon as the visitor arrives at the particular page, he or she is greeted with a big, strong photo, and two very simple columns of text — “The Challenge” and “The Outcome. ”
Immediately, IDEO provides communicated two of the case study’s major pillars. And while that is great — the company created a solution regarding vertical farming startup company INFARM’s challenge — it doesn’t stop right now there. As the user scrolls down, those pillars are elaborated on with comprehensive (but not overwhelming) duplicate that outlines exactly what that process appeared as if, replete with quotations and additional visuals.
4. “Secure Wi fi Wins Big to get Tournament, ” simply by WatchGuard
Then, there are the particular cases when pictures can tell almost the entire story — when executed correctly. Network security provider WatchGuard is able to do that by means of this video, which tells the story of how its services improved the attendee plus vendor experience on the Windmill Ultimate Frisbee competition.
5. Rock and Roll Hall of Popularity Boosts Social Media Wedding and Brand Recognition with HubSpot
In the case research above, HubSpot utilizes photos, videos, screenshots, and helpful stats to tell the story of how the Rock and Roll Corridor of Fame used bot, CRM, and social media tools to get brand awareness.
6. Small Desk Plant Business Ups Sales by 30% With Trello
This case study from Trello is straight forward and easy to understand. It starts by explaining the setting of the company that will decided to use it, what their goals had been, and how they planned to use Trello to help them.
It then goes on to discuss the way the software was applied and what tasks plus teams benefited from it. Towards the end, this explains the sales results that originated from implementing the software plus includes quotes from decision-makers at the company that implemented this.
7. Facebook’s Mercedes Benz Achievement Story
Facebook’s Success Stories page serves a number of well-designed and easy-to-understand case research that visually plus editorially get to the bottom line quickly.
Each study begins with key stats that will draw the reader within. Then it’s arranged by highlighting a problem or goal within the introduction, the process the business took to reach their goals, and the results. Then, at the end, Fb notes the tools utilized in the case study.