Early in my career I was a floor manager in a department store. In that job I discovered customers don’t always appreciate your product or understand why they absolutely must buy it. It is your job to tell, or better yet, show them.
For example, if I wanted to reduce the overstock of ugly purple shirts, I had to help a customer visualize how that shirt would fit into her wardrobe. I would put one on a mannequin with great pants, a fun purse and a cool belt. The shirts would fly out the door, very often accompanied by the pants, purse or belts.
I am sure you are thinking that’s a great example, but how can you use this marketing strategy if you are not in a visual business? That is where a case study comes in. Instead of telling prospects about your skills, look for ways to show examples of your products or services in action.
Case studies give potential clients a chance to visualize what you might be able to do for them. They are particularly effective with technical products because they are more interesting to read than just product specifications. They are also more credible then simple sales literature filled with claims that you are the “leading experts in your field.”
A well written case study draws the reader into the story told from the perspective of a customer. It helps you prove your expertise without bragging by presenting a factual description of the problem, solution and the results. A quote from the customer brings a bit of emotion and credibility to the case study, saying things you can’t say.
Case studies don’t have to be long or very complex (two pages maximum). They simply need to answer three questions:
Share your story
Now that you have written your case study, put it to work. Create a PDF you can print and hand to prospects or an online, more interactive version complete with a video testimonial from a client. Once you have your first case study done, it is time to start working on the next one.