In the digital marketing age, case studies have become the go-to sales tool on many a corporate website. The simple format allows companies to sidestep the standard marketing pieces filled with unsubstantiated promises and brag a bit about the data-driven evidence of their product’s achievements and impacts.
But case studies have been under-utilized by software companies that should be taking advantage of this powerful marketing opportunity. Because software can be developed to do just about anything we can imagine, we’re often tempted to sell it that way. However, unless your product is water, you can’t sell everything to everyone. Such a broad message ends up speaking to no one. To make the most of your case studies, here’s what you need to know to make them effective.
Start by naming pain points that potential clients can identify with. It’s great if your software solved issues unique to this client, but you want readers to see themselves having success with your solution. A combination of both common and unique pain points will show your versatility.
List some of the steps you took to define the client’s needs and how you got there. Readers want to know that if their problem is similar to the one described, you aren’t going to hand them a cookie cutter solution that worked for someone else. Include details about your research efforts, your testing, and how many times you went back to the drawing board to get it just right.
Everyone expects this story to end with “...and it worked.” So make your story end with a surprise. Rather than stating how you addressed each of the original pain points, show how you gave the client more than they asked for, solved additional problems, or headed off issues the client knew they would arise.
When done right, creating case studies can be an ambitious and in-depth process. But a well-developed case study will expand marketing efforts when used across multiple platforms. Post it on your website, link to it on your social media, and send it in an email campaign to generate buzz and traffic.