There are many content tools and devices that you can use to help build your business. For example, email marketing is a powerful tool to help you connect with your prospect and sell your products or services. Case studies often serve a different business building purpose than email. However, they can be just as powerful a tool.
What Is a Case Study?
According to a wiki definition, a case study is:
1. A process or record of research in which detailed consideration is given to the development of a particular matter over a period of time.
2. A particular instance of something used or analyzed to illustrate a principle.
Let’s take a quick look at an example. A cloud storage company may write a case study on moving document storage from local hard drives to the cloud. The case study would ideally focus on the experience of one primary client; however, it could include the experiences of several different clients if their experience all supports one main theme or idea. Don’t worry about how big or well-known the client is. What is important is to highlight the real-life benefits that the client has achieved.
The case study then would prove the case for using her services. Case studies are generally written from a problem/experience/solution standpoint. That is, a problem is presented. In the case of the Cloud storage services, her case study might talk about the benefits achieved with security, performance and even backup best practices. Research and facts would then be used to back up the problem, as well as the client interview.
The experience would then be presented. In this case the client would be interviewed and share their trials and tribulations as they recognized the disadvantages of local data storage and what obstacles they faced before deciding to make the change with you firm. Then the solution would be presented.
Why Use Case Studies?
Case studies can provide a clear vision for prospective customers as to how you can guide them to the solution to their needs. By demonstrating your vision into what their future will look like after your help you gain a strong foothold for business opportunities. As you can see from the example, one of the biggest benefits of using a case study is that they can be used to persuade others to use a product or service. However, they shouldn’t be written as persuasive documents. Case studies should be based on fact, interviews, and real world experiences and examples.
Another reason to use case studies in business is because they can enhance your industry credibility and authority. They’re formal business papers, and creating one or many can set you at a higher level than your competition.
You can use them as marketing pieces as well. Whenever you publish a case study, create a press release for it. You’ll gain some publicity as well as a potential boost in search engine results. If you publish the case study on your site, you will likely get some search engine credit, too, which can boost rankings.
Highlight the case study on your website for high visibility. Consider offering it to visitors in exchange for their email address as a way to gather information on future customer potential. Share a link to the case study on your social media channels, and encourage others to share.
Case studies provide a number of business advantages and can build considerable momentum if you do them consistently. I am always thinking of potential case studies with clients I am working on. I consider them an advanced and more detailed testimonial that provides value to those that you want to serve.
Hubspot uses case studies in a very powerful, effective way on their customer page for you to review. They should stimulate ideas for your own needs.
They’re powerful tools. Explore how you might create a case study for your business.