This case study is based on a customer interview. I sent the client a list of questions in advance of our call so she had time to prepare. The questions outlined the story to include:
1. The problem
2. The situation
3. The solution search
4. Why they chose the brand
5. Their experience with the brand
6. The results
I recorded the meeting to ensure the accuracy of the information and to save time in the writing process. Then, I wrote the draft and modified it accordingly based on the information received in the interview. The customer reviewed and approved the final draft.
After doing two other case studies before this one, I noticed a couple of issues with the template I had inherited.
- Heavy overview: It listed the challenges, solution, and results on the first page before going into the actual story. You could say it was “putting the cart before the horse.” Outlining the story on the first page delayed the audience from getting to the case study itself.
- Too much text: The stories were text-heavy, taking too long to read and keep the audience’s attention. If someone chose to read only the overview, they’d miss important details they could learn from by reading the complete story.
To tighten up the template, I proposed to the team that we remove the overview information on the first page and include only a simple list of highlights. Then, because the story is posted on the web and audiences scan web content more than they read, I recommended making each section more scannable by using lists with bold highlights to describe the challenges, solution, and results.
I also suggested foregoing the PDF versions and, instead, posting the stories as web pages. The team agreed that would be nice but didn’t feel they had sufficient resources to accommodate that. Even the simple changes to the content made a big difference in the overall look and feel of the story.
Update: Since writing this story, the company was purchased by insightsoftware. The story is no longer available online.