Case studies are a great way to bring in more customers. There’s the honesty of actual customers talking about their experiences with your shop, but you can control what makes it to the case study. Before you start calling customers to interview them for case studies, you’ll need to know the best way to make your case study shine. Below are several tips, but first, you need to know what kind of product you’re making.
What format do you want?
There are many ways to make case studies, but they boil down to writing an article, creating a video, or recording audio, often used in podcasts. Writing an article has the lowest production cost, but if your shop already has some videos or podcasts, it may be worth making case studies in that format. More than 50% of consumers want to see more video from businesses, and 82.4% of podcast listeners spend more than seven hours a week listening to podcasts. So, you can see how it might be worth it to make a video or podcast, but it all depends on what’s right for your shop and what format your customers like.
Case studies type #1: Tips for writing the best article
If you’re writing an article, you have many options for how to interview your customers. You could send them an email, call them on the phone, talk to them in person, or even IM them. Whatever way you choose to interview them, make sure you’re recording it so you can quote them directly. Customer quotes are beneficial, and, with the customer’s permission, you can use them in other places as well.
Once you’ve finished the first draft of the article, have someone else read it. A fresh set of eyes can catch grammar mistakes, misspellings, or any other embarrassing error. This study puts your shop and your customer in the best light, so you want to make sure the writing is the best it can be. If you don’t have anyone else who can help you with the article, leave it alone for a day or two and then reread it.
Case studies type #2: Tips for creating the best video
You don’t need an expensive video camera to make a great case study video. Cameras on phones have only gotten better, and videos taken from smartphones are familiar to the audience. Many people even think that cell phone footage has a more honest feel than high-end video. With all that said, you still want to make sure your video is the highest quality you can make it.
Part of that quality is making sure that everyone on camera is dressed professionally. It’s also important to have great audio for these videos. While cell phone cameras have improved, their microphones still have a ways to go. If you can get an external microphone, even if it’s cheap, you’ll get better sound quality than you would with your cell phone. Just make sure you can get the audio from the mic to sync up with the video afterward. One popular way to find where they match up is to make a loud noise on camera a few seconds before you start your video, just like how directors in movies use a clapperboard before recording a scene.
Ensuring good lighting is the last thing to check when recording video. We’ve all gotten better at this with video calls over the previous year, but it’s critical for something this important. Be aware of where the lighting is coming from. If your customer is sitting in front of a window on a bright day, you’ll only be able to see their outline. Multiple light sources are also helpful to cut down on shadows, especially on the face. You may get great lighting in your shop. It’s just important to check that before you start recording.
Case studies type #3: Tips for recording the best podcast
Podcasts may seem like less work than video, but they require different work. You don’t have to worry about lighting or what anyone is wearing. On the other hand, since audio is the only thing you’re recording, it becomes more important to get that right. Just like you need an external mic for your cell phone, you need one for your computer, too. You’ll also want a pop filter for that microphone. This circle of fabric helps to dampen sounds like the “p” in pop or sibilants. It makes your audio sound cleaner and more professional.
If you have a series of podcasts, you’ll want to see if you can fit a case study into that series. You already have a built-in audience that wants to hear what you have to say, which helps. If you’re making a stand-alone podcast, especially if this is your first podcast, you have much more freedom in what the episode sounds like, but that also means you have more decisions.
For example, what music will you have playing in the background? Just like how ice cream usually has solid food in it so you can eat while you’re eating, podcasts will often have background music so you can listen while you’re listening. If this is your first podcast, listen to a few popular podcasts in your industry and see what they’re doing. You don’t have to do the same things, but it can give you an idea of what’s possible and what you think works well.
Case studies are an excellent way for customers to help you advertise your shop. With the internet, there are many ways to create and share a case study. You may even try making one case study into multiple formats. The tips above will help you get started in whatever format works best for you and your customers.