No matter what product or service you’re selling, one of the biggest impediments to a sale is doubt.

Like it or not, your prospects are thinking:

  • Will your solution work?
  • Will it work for me?
  • Is it cost effective?
  • I don’t want to be a pioneer so have they done something similar for someone like me?

Now while the truth is business is business and while there are obviously nuances, if your product or service works for one business, it’s very likely to work for another.

But that’s not how people think. We all think “our business is different and unique”. So rather than fighting the current (and drowning in exhaustion), it’s better to go with the flow and give people what they want. Proof that your solution will work for their business (or if it’s a personal product, help them in the same way it’s helped countless other people like them).

And the best way of doing this is by using case studies.

Let’s look at why case studies are so effective…

Case studies are one of the most powerful weapons in your marketing arsenal.

Written as a story, case studies are a particularly effective way to describe what you did for someone, how you did it, why you did it that way, and what the results were.  They work well because they’re factual, and because people like to read about the challenges others face.

Case studies are amazingly versatile, as you can use them in your advertising, direct mail sales letters, white papers, email or printed newsletters, on your website, as articles in trade magazines, and in brochures and other literature.  They can be handed out by your sales team before or after meeting prospects, and help close deals by showing you have the solution to your prospect’s needs.

A case study is an endorsement of what you do and how you do it. As a proof of capability, they have no peer.

So what are the elements of a great case study?

Like a good novel, a case study has drama, suspense, an interesting cast of characters and a satisfying resolution. They show a challenge and a solution. And detail how you made that solution work for your client.

All good case studies follow the same basic format of the “Why”, “What”, “How”, and “What if” outlined here.

So you start with the “why”, or what the situation was that the client was facing. You move into the “what” you recommended they do, “how” you went about it and what the results were… the “what if”.

In addition they use real facts and figures to demonstrate how your product or service helped this client. So if working with you helped your client put an extra 137% on their bottom line, say so. It’s far more effective than saying “We helped them increase profit”. As a reader I want to know how much by.

Wherever possible also include a testimonial from the client in the case study. It adds credibility.

Now there are times when you can’t specifically name an organisation or individual. There may be confidentiality issues or the person simply doesn’t want to be named. So how can you get around this?

You can create a fictional name (and state that the name has been changed for privacy reasons). You do however need to ensure what you say is accurate and be able to provide proof should a regulator come knocking on your door to check. This is especially important in certain health related areas like weight loss, as well as Financial Planning etc.

Remember your goal is to answer the questions in your prospect’s mind:

  • Will your solution work?
  • Will it work for me?
  • Is it cost effective?
  • I don’t want to be a pioneer so have they done something similar for someone like me?

And have them convince themselves that they’d benefit by working with you.

Now I should point out writing effective case studies is a specialised skill. It requires an understanding of your business as well as excellent writing skills. It also demands a degree of objectivity for it to be really effective.

The process is complex. We comprehensively interview your client to answer the why, what, how and the what if from their perspective. We get your side of the story to make sure the case study is meaningful and specific in its detail.

We then write it up, including where possible a testimonial from your client. Naturally there may be a couple of drafts which lead to a final approved version which you can use in all your sales and marketing material to showcase your solution.

It is a time-consuming task best left to experts like us.

Like to know more? You can see some recent examples of case studies we’ve created here.

Need to get some written? Contact us on (02) 9499-7958 and we can get the ball rolling.

Remember, case studies are one of the most effective marketing components in your marketing arsenal. So the sooner you have some created, the better.

Till next time,


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