- What is a case study video?
- Why should you make Video Case Studies?
- What makes a good Case Study Video?
- How long should a Case Study Video be?
- Three examples of highly effective Case Study Videos
- When to make Video Case Studies
- How to make a video case study in 9 easy-to-follow steps
- How to use your Case Study Video
What is a case study video?
Reviews have played such a big part in why we buy things. When was the last time you made a major purchase without checking the reviews first?
On top of that, video is proven to be one of the most powerful marketing mediums with skyrocketing conversion rates.
When you combine the two, with a healthy dose of storytelling, you make marketing magic – Case Study Videos.
Case Study Videos are extremely powerful ways of showing the quality of your work and what your clients and customers think of you.
Making a Video Case Study can be daunting but when properly executed using the steps described in this guide they can bring your products or service to life and show off the real-world success of your clients or customers.
Not only do they detail how you provide your product or service to a high standard but they also profile the clients’ success story achieved as a result of working with you.
They also double up as a testimonial from your client in a highly powerful medium. What better review than actually watching your client say the very words and describing why other potential clients like them should work with you?
Video Case Studies are generally structured with an interview with your client talking to camera, along with yourself or a representative of your organisation describing your work.
The Case Study Video should cover:
- What the clients’ challenges were and why they decided to work with you.
- What you did to tackle the challenge.
- The results that were achieved.
- A testimonial from the client.
These elements can be covered in the interview to camera by yourselves, with the client or both.
Why should you make Video Case Studies?
Case Study Videos help build trust and credibility in your brand and can be a major factor in new clients and customers deciding to buy or work with you.
Video is a highly persuasive form of marketing – your users are far more likely to watch a video than read text and the chances of them acting on the information given is much higher, too.
Case study videos are also versatile and adaptable – as well as sitting prominently on your website and forming part of your marketing funnel, they can easily be used as shareable social media posts or embedded in email marketing campaigns.
They are particularly useful in this way when pitched as a story of client success, rather than an advert for your services – the subtle difference means they are much more likely to be watched than an ad, and are likely to be much more persuasive, too.
They are also very emotive – watching a client tell the story of their success with all the highs and fulfilling experiences that come with it is personal and direct. The client is speaking straight to a potential customer about why they should work with you. That’s extremely compelling.
This case study filmed by pbmedia shows off the success a successful artist has had thanks to a University course and a Government-sponsored programme.
What makes a good Case Study Video?
Video Case Studies should contain:
- The story of why a client chose to work with you and what their challenge was.
- How you solved their problem.
- What the results look like.
Within that there are important elements that should be included for maximum effectiveness. They are:
- Make sure you get a testimonial from the client. Yes, you are telling your client’s success story but you need to make sure that they praise your service or product.
- The client/customer should talk about the key benefits and features of your product or services. This is essentially a video review – design your questions to bring this out from the testimonial.
- Your Case Study Video should tell a story or craft a narrative. This is the best way to introduce emotion and build a story about your case study that draws viewers in.
Video Case Studies are a level up from a traditional written case study – but that’s not to say you should discard writing a case study to go alongside it. Ideally, your website will host both elements – written and video.
How long should a Case Study Video be?
This is a difficult question to answer as it can depend on your sector. If your company produces highly technical work that needs a lot of explaining with projects that last years before they are completed, they are likely to be much longer videos.
But most Case Study Videos can say what they need to say in two minutes or less. If you’re straying over three minutes, you’re probably going to duplicate what’s already been said and start to bore the viewer.
Three examples of highly effective Case Study Videos
Google practically has a whole website dedicated to Video Case Studies, and for good reason. The master marketers know the power video plays in the modern buying cycle – especially in explaining how their service works by getting their customers to explain it for them.
Take this Video Case Study with Pepsi.
There’s plenty about how Pepsi have succeeded – most of the case study is focused on Pepsi’s growth as a result of working with Google. But it also explains how they did it and crafts a narrative around the story – simultaneously educating the viewer at the same time as persuading them.
It’s also accompanied by a detailed written case study to back up the information. Viewers persuaded by the video can follow up their interest by reading in more detail, which in turn leads to a call to action.
Dutch Embassy in the UK
Think Embassy and you probably think of losing your passport or safe haven in a faraway land.
But Embassies play a key role in trade and international relations. They bring businesses together from one nation to another. But how to tell that story, especially when they audiences are potentially in two different nations? The Video Case Study is perfect.
The Dutch Embassy in the UK employed pbmedia to film detailed case studies of businesses from the Netherlands trading in the UK and vice versa to help tell this story.
These short, sharp case studies were filmed at a Trade Mission event in London – saving on the expense of visiting client locations and capturing them in an easy to film space when they are likely to be at ease.
They also made case studies centred around their key outputs – economy, culture and climate – that brought in testimonials from multiple clients they had worked with.
The result is emotive case studies with a clear narrative that the Embassy has been able to use in multiple ways – played at events, in meetings with new businesses they are working with and in digital marketing campaigns.
Creative UK is one of the nation’s biggest cultural brands. They support creatives across the UK in a multitude of ways – often unseen – so creating Case Study Videos about their work and the knock-on effect it’s had on the creative industry is a crucial way of illustrating their deep influence. They also rely on public funding, so proving their work through video is an excellent way for funders to be immediately and easily engaged in their story and purpose.
Their clients are also artists and creatives – with visually compelling stories to tell, so video is a natural medium.
This below example, created by pbmedia, tells the Creative UK story solely through the success of the client and shows future creatives just what’s possible by working with them.
When to make video case studies
Video Case Studies can be made at any point in your business cycle (once you have some customers clearly) and it’s good practice to start embedding them in your annual marketing.
They are evergreen, so the earlier you start making case studies, the more value you will get out of them over time. They’ll make your marketing and offer much more credible over time, forming an important part of your sales process.
When you ask the client or customer to do a Case Study Video is also worth bearing in mind. You want to capture the customer at their happiest – at the point the service is completed or the results are realised is best. It’s quite an undertaking for the client, so approaching them when they are most in love with your brand is important.
Try to sell it to them as value for them, too – which it genuinely is. They are getting to tell their success story to your audience, a new audience for them, and this has real value.
How to make a video case study in 9 easy-to-follow steps
Step 1: Identify the clients you want to take part
When making a Case Study Video bear in mind that not everyone is going to say yes. So if you want to make three, ask at least six.
When you’re drawing up your shortlist think about the clients and customers who have an interesting story to tell. Your video will need a hook that gets people interested – clients who have built a six-figure business with you along for the ride are easy to get people excited about.
Finally, make sure the case study fits the target audience you’re trying to reach. Don’t make case studies about clients that don’t quite fit where your business is heading – even if they do say brilliant things about you. You might even do more harm than good.
Step 2: Structure the video by thinking like a new customer
Think about what your future customers or clients want to know about you. They don’t want to know about how you first met your case study in a coffee shop on 5 December 2021. They want to know your case study’s pain points and challenges – give them something to relate to. They want to be inspired and reassured by the success and results – and a genuine testimonial.
Use this to structure your questions.
Step 3: Script your Case Study Video, but not too closely
Draw up a list of questions to ask your case study that includes the basics:
- Tell us about your company and the problems it faced.
- Why did you approach us?
- How did we help you?
- What results have you seen?
Then, think about some more personal questions that pick on specific elements of your story. For example, ask about a particular personal experience or service you had with that customer or a highlight.
Step 4: Consider whether you can do this yourself, or need to outsource
If you have the ability in-house to film and edit the case study, that’s fantastic – but take into consideration the time that it’s likely to cost you. It may be much easier to outsource the work to a professional company.
Or, you may be capable of filming the case study – even if it’s on a smartphone or recording a video call through an application like Zoom – and hand over the editing to a video production company who can add graphics, branding and a professional touch.
Step 5: Make it easy on them
Make it super, super easy for the client to take part – organise the location, the times and anything they might need. Don’t leave it to them to organise a room at their office – as much as they might care, they won’t care as much as you.
Remove as many barriers to taking part as possible. Find an attractive venue that’s easy for both of you, or make space at your office. Put on lunch if you need to!
They might even want to do it virtually – that’s fine, you can record the video call and potentially overlay with B-roll of their company which you can film separately or they may be able to supply you with.
Step 6: Be firm with results and use stats
Identify the results at an early stage – these may well be the hook that starts the Case Study Video. You want three easy-to-digest stats that the client believes in and can say with enthusiasm that the viewer will understand. The results are crucial to the case study, don’t leave them to 10 seconds at the end.
Those stats might not be results-orientated. They might illustrate the client’s pain point – we were 45% down year-on-year in revenue, for instance.
Try to capture the statistic graphically when editing, too.
Step 7: Draw up a Shot List
Make a list of shots that you need so that the process on the day is as simple as possible. This might look like:
- Two interviews to camera.
- Three specific shots about the product.
- A shot that illustrates what the client does.
- Shots that show off the results.
- Shots of the two of you together looking happy.
Make sure you get plenty of B-roll – you want lots to work with in case you have lots to cover-up.
On a practical basis on the day, make sure the room is well lit and the compositions of the shots are nice and clean – no plants poking out from people’s heads.
Then make sure you get nice and quiet – poorly lit videos where it’s difficult to hear simply won’t be watched.
Step 8: Edit ruthlessly
You want your video under the two-minute mark ideally, so make sure you cut out any repetition or details that aren’t crucial to the telling of the story. Your Video Case Study should feel impactful and to the point with a story to tell succinctly and with emotion.
Use graphics if you can – they are helpful in bringing figures and results to life to underline successes.
Step 9: Check before you publish
Avoid design by committee but get the view of at least one other member of your team, ideally not involved in the filming, to get their view. Make sure you check with the client as well – the last thing you want is for them to ask you to take it down because of something you missed or a detail you got wrong. Heaven forbid they comment on the post to point it out, too!
How to use your Case Study Video
First off, publish the video on your website. Make sure it’s very prominent and easy to find on your website – this is a powerful piece of marketing that shows off the benefits of working with you with social proof, maximise its use.
Then, build it into your sales process. It could be part of an email that you send to a warm lead, for example: “Thanks for your interest, your experience seems to be similar to this client of ours. Here’s what happened when we started working together.”
You can also use the video in your sales presentations or at events – they are great ways of breaking the ice and showing off your human side.
Make sure you use on social media and don’t be afraid to boast but pitch the post as about the client – not you. For example:
We’re so pleased XYZ client has finally managed their ambition of solving XYZ problem in their business. They are such good people who do brilliant work for XYZ customers. Here’s what happened when we started working together:
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