When it comes to creating content that inspires action and gets results, customer case studies check all the boxes. Case studies detail how your company solved a specific problem. Also, it focuses on actions taken to demonstrate expertise rather than simply sharing knowledge.
A case study brings two powerful elements together–demonstrated expertise and storytelling. While blogs contain a lot of information and offer the flexibility to share information in various formats, it’s still limited to sharing knowledge. Seeing how companies apply that knowledge in a real-world context can have a much bigger impact on brand perception. In other words, converting more leads into sales, building trust, and creating loyal customers.
When it comes to creating content that outpaces the competition, the real value in your content comes from your ability to provide substance–to provide proof that supports your claims. Creating high-impact case studies to detail your successes can be a powerful way to engage audiences with content marketing. Let’s take a look at the marketing power behind case studies.
Fundamental #1: The Benefits of Leveraging Customer Case Studies
When done well, case studies are a powerful marketing tool. They top the list of content types that contribute to generating three times as many leads as all other methods. The information presented in a case study demonstrates your expertise in solving a specific problem for a specific customer profile. You can use these content pieces for:
- Staff Product Training
- Lead Generation
- Educate Consumers
- Validate Customers
- Up-Sell or Cross-Sell Customers
Case studies are an authentic and engaging way to build trust and strengthen customer relationships by proving that your sales speak covers more than just saying the right words.
Fundamental #2: The Importance of Creating and Updating a Dedicated Case Studies Page
Case studies are easily one of the most valuable pieces of content in terms of marketing power. Creating a dedicated webpage to house your case studies makes sense for several reasons.
First, it’s about organization. You want prospects to find your best content easily. And a dedicated case studies page with an appropriate title like ‘case studies’ or ‘success stories’ is a surefire way to get prospects on the right pages.
Search Engine Optimization
It’s also about search engine optimization (SEO). In 2021, 69% of marketers reported investing in SEO as a fundamental component of their content marketing strategies. A dedicated case studies page is a treasure trove of high-quality content with substantial value. Once visitors find their way to this page, they will likely spend a significant amount of time reading and learning about your company–building trust and progressing through the customer journey while giving your on-site SEO a big boost.
And, it’s about image. A dedicated case studies page has a presence. It makes your business look professional and experienced so that you can easily earn the trust of new prospects. Case studies are a powerhouse for lead generation and are a fan-favorite tool for most marketers.
Fundamental #3: Suggestions for Repurposing Case Study into Valuable Content Assets
Sure, putting together a case study can be time-consuming. Miranda, a content writer, specializing in writing case studies for small to medium-sized companies, says it can take around three months to gather all the information and write a good case study.
It’s a significant investment, but when done well, it provides high-value evergreen content that doesn’t come with an obvious expiration date. So long as your product or service is relevant, the success story highlighted in your case study will remain valuable.
Case studies also provide a healthy supply of content you can repurpose across various platforms–all driving traffic back to your case studies page. This means that a good case study can actually add efficiency to your content development process. Case studies are your A-team in your content line-up for building trust and converting customers.
Here are a few great ideas to repurpose your case study content to multiply the conversion-driving power behind this powerful content.
- Long Form Case Study: Publish a complete case study with in-depth analysis, data sets, and graphics in a branded report on your case studies page.
- Short Form Case Study: Turn the skimmable points of your case study into a condensed version and publish it as a branded one-pager or blog post.
- Infographic: Pull data sets from multiple case studies to display in an infographic to share across social media channels.
- Social Media Posts: Take pull quotes and statistics out of the case study and post them to social media with a link back to the published piece.
- Interviews: Record the interviews conducted for your case study research and publish snippets of these interviews in a podcast or video format. You’ll only need a 30-45 second snippet for social media video posts.
- Slide Deck: Reformat the content of the case study into a powerful slide deck for sales pitches and presentations.
- Testimonials: Highlight customer testimonials shared during case study interviews in social media posts or directly on your website.
- Press Release: Reformat the case study to publish a press release promoting the success of your product or service.
- Social Media Quotes: Repurpose data sets, quotes, and rejected headlines into social media posts, driving traffic back to the published case study.
- New Graphics: Reformat the data from a case study into a visual to post on your website or social channels.
Fundamental #4: How to Get the Most Bang for your Buck with Case Studies
Case studies inherently have a lot of potential to build trust and convert customers. However, a particular case study’s reach depends on the quality of the information and its presentation. Those factors impact the case study as much as the strategy behind its promotion.
Invest time and resources into creating high-quality case studies packed with rich information. Then, take time to nail down the right messaging and craft an appropriate delivery filled with engaging stories, credible facts, and hard-hitting statistics.
With a complete case study in hand, put together a complete distribution strategy that focuses on multiple channels. Consider internal exposure, using the case study as a training tool, and external exposure as a sales and marketing tool.
Final Thoughts: How to Leverage Customer Case Studies Using Content Creation Services
Creating a case study that tells your success story in an inspiring and authentic way is a lot of work. While you are certainly the expert in your business, and there is no substitute for your firsthand knowledge of success, the skilled talent of a content creation service can help bring the whole concept together.
Use a content creation service to plan and prepare for an effective case study. Experienced creators can help gather the right information upfront, identifying who to interview and which questions to ask. Let a case study content expert interview your team to pull out all the right details to create a compelling case study. Then, let a skilled writer find the right tone, words, and style to paint a picture with words that tell a deeply engaging success story.
The expertise of a content creator isn’t a substitute for your expertise or perspective. It’s a supplement to ensure the final product is a high-impact case study that helps you realize the full potential of your content marketing strategy. Talk with the sales team at nDash today to learn more about how we can help you create a powerful case study that levels up your content marketing efforts.
How do you leverage customer case studies?
Case studies can be a powerful marketing tool with many uses. From training the sales staff to providing proof of your expertise, case studies can help promote products and services internally and externally.
What to include in customer case studies?
Case studies should include a common problem that your target audience faces with a story that explains how your product or service has solved that problem. Include credibility-building datasets, customer quotes, and authentic examples to illustrate the observable change.
When is the best time to ask for customer case studies?
There are four pivotal points in a customer relationship. The first is the approval point or the moment they convert from a lead to a paying client. While you have them on the hook, they don’t have enough experience with your company to provide valuable case study material yet.
Next comes implementation; this is when you effectively solve their ‘problem.’ A big rush of happy feelings comes at this stage, but it’s still a bit too early to get the full picture for your case study. Instead of capitalizing on the easy win, aim for the attribution point–a relative timeframe that allows the customer to have experience and perspective.
It depends on the problem, the customer, and the industry–the attribution point can be days, weeks, or months down the road. When in doubt, stick with a 90-day rule, assigning three months as the maximum expiration period for your big ask with the goal somewhere in the three to six-week range. To facilitate this, you may consider letting new clients know that you intend to follow up with a request for a case study down the road.
This post is by nDash community member Marissa Snider. She’s a freelance writer with a decade of instructional design and corporate learning experience.