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How to Write a Case Study

Case studies are a great resource for both online and offline marketing.  They educate your prospects about your product or service benefits.  They illustrate how to use your offerings.  And they explicitly portray the type of customer you wish to do business with. 

But to achieve these results, you need to invest some time and effort.  Here a blueprint to follow.

Step One:  Frame the Presenting Need. 

Here you describe what the client’s needs and problems were.  Try to describe these as specifically as possible and link them to business outcomes.  For example, talk in terms of problems with service quality, product launch delays, profit margin slippage, etc.

Step Two:  Describe your product or

service solution. 

The goal isn’t to overwhelm the reader with details.  Rather, provide a high-level description of the offering, zero in on key features and benefits, and describe how the product or service was expected to improve the problems defined in Step One. 

Step Three:  Describe the scope of your solution.

Make sure the reader understands the specific scope of your solution.  For example, is it designed for a specific target market or a very specialized use?  Is the customer using your entire product or service offering or just a piece of it?

Step Four:  Describe the implementation process.

Review the steps involved in rolling out the product or service.  Be sure to highlight anticipated problems and how you overcame them. Also detail how long implementation took, from start to finish.

Step Five:  Review the customer’s response to the product or service.

Here is where a case study begins to shine.  Discuss the customer’s perceptions of and reactions to your product or service.  Use a “drill down” process, starting with overall reaction, then moving to reactions to specific features, then to whether the service met their expectations, then to whether the  offering improved how their business operates.  Ideally, you also want to get to the point of discussing return on investment (ROI).  But this might not be possible immediately.

Follow these steps and you’ll end up with case studies that help your companies sell more business and retain more customers.  But this will depend on how well you leverage this content.  Suggested places to publish case studies include:

  • Web sites
  • Marketing brochures
  • Trade journal articles, co-by-lined with customer
  • Marketing publications
  • Trade show presentations
  • Annual reports

More articlesarrow How to Get the Resources You Need | Top Ten Ways to Leverage Your Outside Writers | How to Write a Case Study

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