2016 has seen me delve into writing business case studies for a few of my clients. I recently completed a project that saw me write 55 of them, and in doing so, found several key sections you need to consider when putting a case study together.
- Aims and objectives
- Challenges along the way
- Strategy (similar to aims, but can also look at a wider business strategy)
- Delivery (how you did it)
- Results (metrics)
- Quotes from key spokespeople
It’s amazing how many companies don’t have case studies on their websites and how they differ from one company to another – if they have them at all. I think many people hear the word case studies and start yawning and disappearing under their desk, but they don’t have to be long-winded and complicated.
Deciding on a case study format
I’ve read so many different types of case studies as part of my research and they have varied massively. My favourite ones are:
- Short and sweet: In-depth case studies usually include a lot of history and a crazy amount of jargon (I have a very strong dislike for the word solutions). I would aim for 500 to 1,000 words max.
- Credible and engaging: Writing a case study purely based on online research isn’t always going to get the best results. Conducting short interviews with different team members is a good way of getting different angles and often this is where you uncover the most interesting information.
They also have:
- Images, videos or interactive content:This is something I rarely see on business case studies. Also, worth bearing in mind is including a transcript for accessibility purposes.
- Interesting quotes: Most case studies need to big up their partners, but this needs to be balanced with engaging content and not be purely promotional.
For more information on how to write a good business case study check out the blog on 8 tips to creating a great case study or How to write a great case study that attracts clients.