Case study copywriting
If you're thinking about getting some outside help with your case study copywriting, you've come to the right place. Whether you need a freelance copywriter to help develop your case studies, or you're looking for some assistance with the best questions to ask for a customer case study, you'll find the answers here.
What are the benefits of using customer case studies?
Your existing customers can act as one of your most valuable marketing tools.
Their stories of how your company has helped them to grow sales, manage risk or become more efficient really give you an edge when you're marketing to prospective customers.
And, in an age when buyers are influenced by recommendations on websites, review sites and social media, your customers' words can help to build trust.
But the challenge is how best to capture and share this feedback.
Customer case studies provide a particularly effective way of explaining why a potential customer might want to choose your business.
By detailing your customers' experiences, case studies allow you to highlight the benefits of your support in a compelling and original way. They also let you demonstrate why existing customers have chosen to work with your company.
Why can it be a good idea to work with a case study copywriter?
A compelling case study tells a story. It creates interest, highlights the challenges your client faced and shows how you helped.
But if you work closely with customers, it can be tricky to step back and see your services in the same way a prospective customer might. You risk ignoring some of the benefits your customers enjoy and focusing too much on how you actually provide your services.
To overcome such challenges, many companies choose to work with an external case study copywriter.
An outside writer will typically:
- Review a project with your team, studying background materials and asking questions to understand how you helped your customer
- Compile a tailored list of questions for a telephone interview with your customer
- Craft an objective case study that demonstrates how your company solves your clients' most pressing business problems
- Chart the highs and lows of a customer project, and demonstrate how your organisation was able to steer your customer through these challenges
- Ensure that each case study provides a fresh perspective of the support your company provides
Companies that seek outside help with case study copywriting can also benefit from:
- A copywriter's experience in writing case studies for other businesses
- A writer's understanding of what makes a case study particularly compelling
- A marketing tool that will educate prospects, as well as engaging them
- A more objective explanation of how you help clients than a case study written in-house
- A story focused on business results that can help to turn prospects into buyers
Can we write our own customer case studies?
Although many companies choose to work with an external case study copywriter, you don't always have to do so. As long as you're realistic about the challenges you'll face when writing your own case studies, producing them in-house can be a more cost-effective option – particularly if you're on a tight budget.
If you're considering this approach, here are some of the challenges to be aware of:
- Time – if you and your team have the time to dedicate to interviewing customers, developing case study outlines, writing them up and seeking customer approvals, then you're already well on the way to being able to handle your own case studies. That said, it's worth thinking about what else you could be doing with that time. If you could be out selling to new customers, delivering your services or generating new product ideas, then your time may be better spent elsewhere.
- Experience – a case study can be one of the more challenging pieces of marketing content to produce. Not only will you have to ensure your customer is happy to participate, but you'll also need experience to be able to interview them, write up an engaging case study that highlights how you helped and be able to negotiate the wording of your final case study so that it positively represents both your business and theirs.
- Interviewing skills – when it comes to interviewing your customers, you'll need to know which questions to ask, as well as being flexible enough to adapt those questions during your conversation. It can take a certain amount of skill and practice to conduct an interview that elicits the most useful information from your customer, without cutting them short or asking the same question again and again.
- Writing skills – it should perhaps go without saying, but in order to produce a compelling case study, you or one of your colleagues will need strong business writing skills. Ideally, you should also be able to build tension in your case study (to highlight how urgent it was that the client called on your help), while producing a piece of content that is engaging and easily understood by a reader without technical industry knowledge.
If you do plan to write your own case studies, then why not start here with our list of useful questions to ask your customers.