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AM #022: 5-Step Case Study Checklist: Transform Client Success Stories into Powerful Sales Tools

Last week’s newsletter sparked some awesome questions from readers.

Remember how we dissected a proposal redesign that led to $1.2M in revenue for an engineering firm this year? (Miss the issue? Catch up here.)

Many of you reached out with questions about case studies:

  • How did you put together the company's case studies?

  • What elements do you include in a case study?

  • Where should the case study sit in the proposal? At the start or tucked in at the end?

  • Got a handy template I could borrow? 👀 ↓

These are great questions, and I’m thrilled you’re asking them.

Because I truly believe case studies can bring a buyer’s decision home, especially for my B2B friends seeking to clinch big deals.

In fact, 87% of B2B buyers consider case studies significantly influence their decision-making process, according to Content Marketing Institute.

That’s no small stat!

So, why am I such a fan of case studies?

  1. They’re natural trust-builders

  2. They employ customer-centric storytelling

  3. They showcase real-world application and success

  4. They can help win big deals

With this in mind, I’m pulling back the curtain on my case study creation process.

Go ahead... swipe it! :)

Here’s my 5-step checklist for building an effective case study:

1. Company Overview

Start by giving your readers context:

  • Company name and location

  • Industry or niche

  • Company size

  • Company objective

2. The Challenge

Set the stage for your case study:

  • Detail the company’s problem/challenges

  • Describe the impact of these issues (cost, efficiency, customer experience, etc.)

  • Share the company’s objectives in tackling these problems

3. The Solution

Show how your product/service stepped in to save the day

  • Provide a detailed account of how you addressed their challenge

  • Highlight unique benefits or features that made your solution exceptionally effective

4. The Results

Offer solid, concrete proof of concept:

  • Share specific, measurable results achieved

  • Compare the situation before and after your intervention

  • Highlight long-term benefits and impact for enduring value

5. Client Testimonial

Ice the cake with a client testimonial:

  • It helps builds trust

  • It creates a personal connection

  • It [can] address common objections

  • It [can] highlight the benefits of your solution

I also like to incorporate a sidebar for a quick snapshot of the company or a brief outline of the challenges/solutions.

And finally....but most importantly, comes the headline.

BONUS: A fail-safe headline formula?

“How [Customer Name] + [Action Verb] + [Outcome/Result] + with [Your Company]”

Keep it crisp. 🥓 10 words or less, and keep it present tense.

Here are a few examples:

  • How Handled Scaled from Zero to 121 Locations with Hubspot

  • How Unbounce Drives Long-Term Growth by Partnering with Zapier

  • How Tray Increased Booked Meetings by 40% with Gong


Building a case study doesn’t need to feel intimidating.

Use this quick, 5-step checklist to bring your customers' success stories to life and demonstrate your company’s real-world impact.

A well-executed (and distributed) case study can be a game-changer in helping your potential customer choose you over your competitors.

Use 'em on your website. Use 'em in your proposals. Use 'em in your sales pitches. Use 'em for PR/media outreach. Use 'em in your marketing pieces. Use 'em in your investor communications. Use 'em in your employee training manual.

...ok let's wrap this up.

Happy writing!

P.S. Want to bring this all to life but feeling a little swamped? I’ve got you! Snag my freebie (and fully editable) 1-page case study templates here. A little design shortcut for you to expedite the case study building process.

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