The Secret to Business Case Studies (Hint: It’s Video)
January 25, 2021
Author: The Motifmotion Team
Business case studies are among the most effective ways to help educate an audience about your products and services. But let’s face it: as important as they are, business case studies have a reputation of being, well…
The good news is, it’s 2021 — not 1992 — and that means they don’t have to be!
In order to make your business case studies entertaining and educational, your safest bet is to transform them into engaging videos. In this article, we’ll explore some of the benefits of case study videos, and also offer some inspiration, ideas, and examples, so that you are well equipped to get started.
Why create business case study videos?
Businesses need to communicate what they offer, and why they are great at what they do. Case study videos are one of the best ways to do this — reaching clients, customers, and potential sales leads
But case study videos can do far more than merely explaining the nuts and bolts. They can also be highly effective marketing videos for businesses.
Potential clients want to see your product and services in action. They want to see results. They want to know what it’s like to work with you.
Guaranteeing positive results is one thing, but actually demonstrating how you make clients’ lives easier? Well, that’s a much more persuasive way to get your foot in the door.
Enter business case study videos.
The Power of Case Study Videos
Here are a few reasons case study videos are better than case studies on paper or powerpoint.
Case study videos are personal. They show real examples of your product or service in action — painting a picture before your viewers’ eyes.
Case study videos are engaging. Everyone enjoys watching videos. They make case studies much more accessible to your target audience.
Case study videos are sharable. They are far more likely to be shared on social media compared to image and text. This makes them one of the best types of marketing videos for business.
Case study videos follow a narrative arc. Storytelling is a marvelous communication technique, especially in business videos. The story for a business case study usually goes something like this:
The client had a problem, or a need to be fulfilled.
They came to your business.
Together, you made a plan.
Your company deftly enacted that plan.
Your team ultimately solved (or significantly improved) the client’s problem.
Include a call to action, inviting prospects to contact you.
Case study videos are rhetorically effective. When done right, there is space to include all the effective forms of persuasion.
Ethos: Ethos is an appeal to ethics or authority. In a business case study video, you demonstrate efficacy, supported by credible authorities: i.e. former clients.
Pathos: Pathos is an appeal to emotion. Pathos helps the viewer stand in your client’s shoes, demonstrating the relief they felt when your company solved their dilemma.
Logos: Logos is an appeal to logic. Your case study video can outline the step-by-step processes you took to assist your client or customer.
You control the story. With video, you are able to control the pace. Being able to decide what information will be shared, at what time, is invaluable when painting a picture.
By including high-profile clients in your case study videos (with permission) you can take advantage of their brand awareness, audience reach, and advertising materials.
Case study videos aren’t explicitly advertisements. For digital marketing, we recommend that brands use the 80/20 rule. Only 20% of the content they post should be overtly commercial. 80% should be otherwise valuable, educational, or interesting. Case study videos fall into the interesting and educational category. They establish your brand as an authority in your niche, without making it clear that you’re selling something — perhaps save a short call to action at the end.
It’s a lot like the purpose of this blog! We invite you to check out our work, but our primary objective is to provide you with valuable information, thereby expanding our brand presence.
When to use Animated Video
Case study videos aren’t only live action. For all the strengths of live action video (like its ability to create a personal connection with real human actors), professional live action videos are also expensive, time consuming, and comparatively inflexible. They require full camera crews, multiple takes, and nervous clients or employees.
Animated storytelling, on the other hand, allows you to communicate abstract, complex, or nuanced ideas — painting a picture before the viewer’s eyes. Animated videos not only illustrate what information is important, but why it is important to your target audience specifically.
Given the short attention spans in today’s digital world — clear, concise videos are becoming non-negotiables in a company’s marketing toolkit. People share great videos without even being asked to, and for this reason, the use of animated video for your case studies might very well be a wise investment.
Animated storytelling in case studies can take on many forms. It’s important to know when to use animated storytelling, as opposed to other types of storytelling.
Here are just a few examples when animated video is great:
If your product or service is too complex for the average viewer to quickly understand, an animated case study video can make that material easier to digest.
If you are selling something abstract or complicated, like, say software; or an abstract service, like say, consulting; animated storytelling can create a razor sharp overview — using symbolism, movement and timing.
Animated storytelling through a case study video is a fantastic way to keep viewers on a website’s landing page, since landing pages containing video have much lower bounce rates.
If done right, you can use animated storytelling to turn your business case studies into something that your audience will actually look forward to!
Turning Your Case Studies into a Video Series
Another strategy you can leverage for your business case study videos is to opt for a video series — or several, interconnected videos.
If you’ve got a lot of information to share, it may help to break up the information into a video series. This way, you won’t risk losing your audience’s attention before you get the chance to make all of your important points.
Video series allow you to explore different topics, within the same family of messaging.
You can share a video series on your social channels over time (a “slow-drip” digital campaign), place them on the correct webpages of your site, or show the right case studies to the right potential clients.
By creating a video series instead of a singular video, you can implement cliffhangers. Incorporating elements of suspense at the end of your video can help your audience look forward to your next case study video.
If you have multiple high-profile clients, each time you publish a case study video they may be willing to share it, in turn. If so, you can take advantage of the reach and awareness of their brand.
Tips for Producing your Business Case Studies
Making sure you get traction on your videos means making sure your case study videos are engaging. Here are some of the things you should be mindful of:
Professional video production
Complimentary background music (tone matters!)
Emotionally resonant language
Humor (when appropriate)
Using Video Marketing Strategies
The next step is finding the right places to promote your case studies. Business case studies in video form are versatile. They can be used in many contexts. These include (but are definitely not limited to):
On YouTube (don’t forget to leverage SEO keywords for organic traffic!)
At recruitment events
Linked in newsletters and emails
In sales meetings
When on-boarding a new employee, to teach about company values and techniques or about a service/product
In meetings with employees, to give them “conversation ammunition”
On your landing page, or other pages on your website
In blog articles, either onsite or on your clients’ pages
Leveraged on social media, like LinkedIn, Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, Vimeo, and more.
A (Real) Business Case Study Example
At Motif Motion, we’ve been producing a case study video series for our client, the Judge Group. You can watch their case study video series here. “Judge” offers a range of interrelated professional services, ranging from staffing, to Information Technology, to organizational leadership. The sheer diversity of their services makes it difficult for a single video to do their services justice. So we use animated case studies to help make the process simple and engaging.
You can see how this video series fits into many of the circumstances we outlined in this article.
The videos tell a story. It starts with a problem, explains the process, and ends with a branded call to action.
The video series includes short videos, less than a minute long, that are fun to watch and easy to understand.
Now that Judge Group has these videos, they can use them at recruiting events, in social media posts, as advertisements, in company meetings, and more. They can use these to market themselves, expand, and communicate internally.
Through case study videos, Judge is able to successfully showcase their expertise and authority, without the video seeming too “commercial.”
Conclusion: The Secret to Business Case Studies
Case studies are only dull if you make them that way. Turning your case studies into videos will make them interesting and fun to watch.
Video is the secret to business case studies for many reasons. A great case study video is shareable, brief, interesting, persuasive, educational, and fun — all without sacrificing authority and professionalism.
Business case studies can be liveaction, or animated video. Live action is best for creating a personal connection. Animated storytelling is best for explaining ideas and communicating messages.
Once your case study is complete, you can use it to your advantage across a range of forums; including recruiting events, social media, meetings, on-boarding opportunities, emails and more. You might also conduct keyword research and upload the video to YouTube, generating organic traffic from YouTube and Google searches.
For medium and large sized companies, producing case study videos is a no brainer. Small businesses without sufficient marketing funds might consider looking into loans for your business.If video is not an option, there are certainly other forms of business storytelling as well.
So what are you waiting for! It’s time to get to work on your very first case study video!
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