Top five tips for writing compelling business case studies

Do you feature business case studies on your website? If you don’t, you’re missing a trick. Business case studies are very powerful because you can show potential customers how you’ve helped other people.

Over the years, I’ve written and edited hundreds of case studies for customers. In this blog, I’ll be taking you through my five top tips to help you write case studies that turn prospective customers into paying customers.

Keep to the point

This is the biggest problem I see with business case studies – often, they’re just way too long. Bear in mind that readers have short attention spans. They’re unlikely to be interested in the tiny details of your project. When a reader lands on your website, they just want to know the headline info – who you worked for, how you helped them and the outcome.

Your reader may well be weighing up whether you’re a good fit for their business. So, you need to make the headline facts stand out. This is particularly important for readers who are scrolling on their phones.

I was recently asked to edit a case study on a customer’s website. The case study was 2,000 words long and covered everything from the original tender process through to how the work was financed. It focused too much on the process of delivering the project rather than what was delivered.

In the end, I distilled this thesis into a pithy 400-word overview, bringing out the key headline information previously hidden in the densely-worded copy. So, keep your case studies short and relevant (to your future customers).

Don’t blind your reader with jargon

It’s important to remember that your case studies need to serve a very specific purpose – convincing potential customers that they should choose you over a competitor. It’s a temptation to get lost in the weeds and start using jargon and in-house terminology that your reader may be unfamiliar with. Remember that you’re providing an overview of the project rather than an in-depth analysis. Your case study has to make sense to anyone who reads it – without needing any additional context or scene setting.

Use clear subheadings to organise your case study

A good way to draw attention to the headline information is to organise your case study material into clear sections – perhaps using ‘the challenge’, ‘what we did’ and ‘the outcome’ as subheadings to help guide your reader through the copy. Here’s an example of how this can work…from a case study I wrote for a local builder. Read the case study.

Use facts and figures in your business case studies

Always include facts and figures in the copy to back up what we’re saying. So, if you’re writing a case study about how your software project transformed your client’s productivity, be specific. If your shiny new software system helped a client treble their business profits or increase your team’s productivity by 30%, then say so.

Include some words from your client

Of course, it’s all very well talking about how you’ve delivered for a client but there’s no replacement for hearing it from the horse’s mouth, as it were. Always include some words from the end client in the case study (provided they’re happy to say something positive, of course).

You can either intersperse some quotes throughout your copy or, even better, use a customer quote as a closing line in your case study. Words are fine but a video testimonial is even more powerful. One warning, though. Always add your client’s name (provided they’ve given their permission). Unattributed quotes always look made up.

If you’re struggling to come up with some ideas, then give me a shout. I’ll find the right words to help you turn readers into customers.

From business case studies to landing pages, I can help with all kinds of website copywriting. Learn more about my website copywriting services.

If you enjoyed reading this blog, you might also be interested in my blog on how to proofread like a pro.

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