Case Study Writing, A Step-By-Step Guide

Written By PhilG

Bradford Marketing Hub contains articles and information that help small and medium service businesses.

This is a generic, step-by-step case study guide that you, the owner of a small service business, can use to write case studies for each new job you undertake.

Case study writing guide for small service business owners.

How this guide works.
The guide has 12 steps. Each main step has a numbered headline. The numbered headline summarises the content you need to provide in that section of the case study. So in section 1. Introduction, for instance. You introduce the reader to the business you helped and problem they faced.

Under the numbered headline, you see a label that says “content needed for this section”. This tells you what to write in this section of your case study.

At the end of the guide I’ve included an example case study to show you what you should end up with.

Jump to the example

1. Introduction to this case study: Talk about this project and set the stage
Content needed for this section: Provide a brief overview of the project, outlining the client’s needs, the challenges faced, and the services your business offered.

2. Client Background: Show you understand your client and their situation
Content needed for this section: Offer insights into the client’s background, industry, and any relevant details that help readers grasp the context of the case study.

3. Problem Statement: State the problem or challenge your client was facing
Content needed for this section: Clearly articulate the problem or challenge the client was facing. This section sets the foundation for showcasing your business’s problem-solving capabilities.

4. Talk about the solution you provided: And showcase your expertise
Content needed for this section: Detail the services or solutions your business provided to address the client’s challenge. Highlight any innovative or unique approaches that were taken.

5. Implementation: Walk through the process and tell the story
Content needed for this section: Describe the step-by-step implementation of your solution. Use a narrative approach to engage readers and make the case study more relatable.

6. Results: Measure the impact and use numbers to prove your success
Content needed for this section: Showcase the outcomes of your services. Use numbers and statistics to show improvements, but also explain how the customer felt about your service and the solutions you provided. Do all you can to demonstrate the effectiveness of your solution.

7. Challenges Faced: Be transparent and acknowledge the hurdles you faced
Content needed for this section: Address any obstacles or challenges encountered during the project. Be honest about difficulties and demonstrate how your business overcame them.

8. Lessons You Learned: Show you learn and improve with every job
Content needed for this section: Reflect on the project, identifying lessons learned and improvements that can be applied to future endeavours. This adds a human touch and demonstrates your commitment to continuous improvement.

9. Testimonials: Increase trust and amplify client satisfaction
Content needed for this section: Include direct quotes or testimonials from customers saying they’re happy with your services. Authentic feedback from happy customers builds credibility.

10. Conclusion: Summarise the key points, prove the results, and show their impact
Content needed for this section: Summarise the key points of this case study, emphasising the positive impact of your services on the client’s business or life. Provide a call-to-action for readers to engage with your business.

11. Visual Elements: Add visual appeal and enhance your case study with graphics
Content needed for this section: Incorporate images, graphs, charts, or any relevant visual elements that prove your claims or break up the sea of text and make your case study visually appealing.

12. Distribution: Share your case studies and make the most of your success stories
Content needed for this section: Outline where and how you plan to share this case study. This could include your website, social media, email campaigns, or other marketing channels.

By following this step-by-step guide, you can consistently create compelling case studies that effectively showcase your expertise and success stories.

An example case study.

You’ve read how this works in theory, now let’s create a fictitious case study for Frank Clearcopy, a copywriter, showcasing how Frank helped a business consultant named Sally Green leverage LinkedIn to promote her services and win new clients.

1. Introduction to this case study: Talk about this project and set the stage

Introduction:

In early 2023, Frank Clearcopy collaborated with business consultant Sally Green to enhance her online presence and generate leads through LinkedIn.

About the client:

Sally Green, a seasoned business consultant with a focus on strategic planning and organisational development, sought to expand her client base and establish herself as an industry thought leader.

The customer’s problem:

Sally faced challenges in standing out in a competitive market. Her LinkedIn profile lacked engagement, and she struggled to convert connections into clients. “Frank Clearcopy” identified the need to revamp her LinkedIn strategy.

The solution we provided:

Frank Clearcopy crafted a comprehensive LinkedIn content strategy for Sally, including targeted profile optimisation, regular thought leadership posts, and engaging copy for her services.

Implementing the solution:

The team at Frank Clearcopy worked closely with Sally to understand her unique value proposition. They developed a content calendar, consistently sharing industry insights, success stories, and personalised messages on her LinkedIn profile.

Results we delivered:

Within three months, Sally experienced a 40% increase in profile views, a 25% rise in connection requests, and most importantly, a 30% boost in client inquiries directly attributed to her enhanced LinkedIn presence.

Hurdles we faced:

Overcoming initial skepticism and ensuring content authenticity were challenges. “Frank Clearcopy” addressed these by aligning closely with Sally’s voice and sharing genuine insights, establishing credibility with her audience.

Lessons we learned:

The project highlighted the importance of authentic communication on social media. Frank Clearcopy learned that a tailored, humanised approach resonates better with the audience.

One more happy customer: 

“Working with Frank Clearcopy transformed my LinkedIn presence. The engaging content not only attracted new connections but also translated into tangible business inquiries. Highly recommended!” 

– Sally Green, Business Consultant.

To summarise:

Through strategic content creation, Frank Clearcopy empowered Sally to showcase her expertise and connect with a broader audience, resulting in increased client inquiries and business growth.

Visual elements we included in this case study:

We included before-and-after screenshots of Sally’s LinkedIn profile, engagement metrics graphs, and visually appealing infographics summarising the key results.

Using and sharing this case study:

Frank Clearcopy strategically shared the case study on their website, LinkedIn company page, and relevant industry groups, amplifying the success story and attracting new clients interested in similar services.

I included this case study for a fictitious copywrter called Frank Clearcopy to demonstrate how the step-by-step guide can be applied to a real-world scenario. This provides a template for your business to create compelling case studies around your own client successes. I hope you found it useful 🙂

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