Thursday, June 16, 2011

Seven Tips for Writing Case Studies that Sell

Customer case studies are one of the most popular kinds of marketing collateral used by B2B companies.  When they're done right, case studies can help shorten sales cycles and close more deals.

According to recent research by Eccolo Media, case studies are the third most widely consumed type of marketing collateral (behind product brochures and white papers) and the second most influential type of marketing collateral (trailing only white papers).

The good news is that case studies can significantly boost the effectiveness of your marketing efforts.  The not-so-good news is that the use of case studies has exploded, and this means that your case studies are facing more competition for attention and mindshare than ever before.  If they look and sound like all the others your potential buyers see, or if they don't tell a compelling story, they simply won't produce the expected results.

There are seven essential steps for writing effective and compelling case studies.
  • Collect and organize the facts you have to work with
  • Define the target audience
  • Identify the key takeaways
  • Make the case study a true "story"
  • Describe results/benefits in specific (preferably, quantitative) terms
  • Use customer quotations liberally
  • Make the case study easy to scan
We've created a "mini guide" for writing effective case studies that discusses these seven steps in greater detail.  These steps reflect current best practices, and we use all of these techniques when we prepare custom case studies for clients.

If you'd like to review Seven Tips for Writing Customer Case Studies that Sell, send an e-mail to ddodd(at)pointbalance(dot)com.

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