How to Write and Present a Case Study (+Examples) - SlideModel (2024)

How to Write and Present a Case Study (+Examples) - SlideModel (1)

Marketers, consultants, salespeople, and all other types of business managers often use case study analysis to highlight a success story, showing how an exciting problem can be or was addressed. But how do you create a compelling case study and then turn it into a memorable presentation? Get a lowdown from this post!

Table of Contents

  • What is a Case Study?
    • Why Case Studies are a Popular Marketing Technique
  • Popular Case Study Format Types
  • How to Write a Case Study: a 4-Step Framework
  • How to Do a Case Study Presentation: 3 Proven Tips
  • How Long Should a Case Study Be?
  • Final Tip: Use Compelling Presentation Visuals
  • Business Case Study Examples

What is a Case Study?

Let’s start with this great case study definition by the University of South Caroline:

In the social sciences, the term case study refers to both a method of analysis and a specific research design for examining a problem, both of which can generalize findings across populations.

In simpler terms — a case study is investigative research into a problem aimed at presenting or highlighting solution(s) to the analyzed issues.

A standard business case study provides insights into:

  • General business/market conditions
  • The main problem faced
  • Methods applied
  • The outcomes gained using a specific tool or approach

Case studies (also called case reports) are also used in clinical settings to analyze patient outcomes outside of the business realm.

But this is a topic for another time. In this post, we’ll focus on teaching you how to write and present a business case, plus share several case study PowerPoint templates and design tips!

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Why Case Studies are a Popular Marketing Technique

Besides presenting a solution to an internal issue, case studies are often used as a content marketing technique. According to a 2020 Content Marketing Institute report, 69% of B2B marketers use case studies as part of their marketing mix.

A case study informs the reader about a possible solution and soft-sells the results, which can be achieved with your help (e.g., by using your software or by partnering with your specialist).

For the above purpose, case studies work like a charm. Per the same report:

  • For 9% of marketers, case studies are also the best method for nurturing leads.
  • 23% admit that case studies are beneficial for improving conversions.

Moreover, case studies also help improve your brand’s credibility, especially in the current fake news landscape and dubious claims made without proper credit.

Ultimately, case studies naturally help build up more compelling, relatable stories and showcase your product benefits through the prism of extra social proof, courtesy of the case study subject.

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Popular Case Study Format Types

Most case studies come either as a slide deck or as a downloadable PDF document.

Typically, you have several options to distribute your case study for maximum reach:

  • Case study presentations in-person, virtual, or pre-recorded, there are many times when a case study presentation comes in handy. For example, during client workshops, sales pitches, networking events, conferences, trade shows, etc.
  • Dedicated website page — highlighting case study examples on your website is a great way to convert middle-on-the-funnel prospects. Google’s Think With Google case study section is a great example of a web case study design done right.
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  • Blog case studies data-driven storytelling is a staunch way to stand apart from your competition by providing unique insights, no other brand can tell.
  • Video case studies — video is a great medium for showcasing more complex business cases and celebrating customer success stories.

How to Write a Case Study: a 4-Step Framework

Once you decide on your case study format, the next step is collecting data and then translating it into a storyline. There are different case study methods and research approaches you can use to procure data.

But let’s say you already have all your facts straight and need to organize them in a clean copy for your presentation deck. Here’s how you should do it.

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1. Identify the Problem

Every compelling case study research starts with a problem statement definition. While in business settings, there’s no need to explain your methodology in-depth; you should still open your presentation with a quick problem recap slide.

Be sure to mention:

  • What’s the purpose of the case study? What will the audience learn?
  • Set the scene. Explain the before, aka the problems someone was facing.
  • Advertise the main issues and findings without highlighting specific details.

The above information should nicely fit in several paragraphs or 2-3 case study template slides

2. Explain the Solution

The bulk of your case study copy and presentation slides should focus on the provided solution(s). This is the time to speak at length about how the subject went from before to the glorious after.

Here are some writing prompts to help you articulate this better:

  • State the subject’s main objective and goals. What outcomes were they after?
  • Explain the main solution(s) provided. What was done? Why this, but not that?
  • Mention if they tried any alternatives. Why did those work? Why were you better?

This part may take the longest to write. Don’t rush it and reiterate several times. Sprinkle in some powerful words and catchphrases to make your copy more compelling.

3. Collect Testimonials

Persuasive case studies feature the voice of customer (VoC) data — first-party testimonials and assessments of how well the solution works. These provide extra social proof and credibility to all the claims you are making.

So plan and schedule interviews with your subjects to collect their input and testimonials. Also, design your case study interview questions in a way that lets you obtain quantifiable results.

4. Package The Information in a Slide Deck

Once you have a rough first draft, try different business case templates and designs to see how these help structure all the available information.

As a rule of thumb, try to keep one big idea per slide. If you are talking about a solution, first present the general bullet points. Then give each solution a separate slide where you’ll provide more context and perhaps share some quantifiable results.

For example, if you look at case study presentation examples from AWS like this one about Stripe, you’ll notice that the slide deck has few texts and really focuses on the big picture, while the speaker provides extra context.

Need some extra case study presentation design help? Download our Business Case Study PowerPoint template with 100% editable slides.

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How to Do a Case Study Presentation: 3 Proven Tips

Your spoken presentation (and public speaking skills) are equally if not more important than the case study copy and slide deck. To make a strong business case, follow these quick techniques.

Focus on Telling a Great Story

A case study is a story of overcoming a challenge, and achieving something grand. Your delivery should reflect that. Step away from the standard “features => benefits” sales formula. Instead, make your customer the hero of the study. Describe the road they went through and how you’ve helped them succeed.

The premises of your story can be as simple as:

  • Help with overcoming a hurdle
  • Gaining major impact
  • Reaching a new milestone
  • Solving a persisting issue no one else code

Based on the above, create a clear story arc. Show where your hero started. Then explain what type of journey they went through. Inject some emotions into the mix to make your narrative more relatable and memorable.

Experiment with Copywriting Formulas

Copywriting is the art and science of organizing words into compelling and persuasive combinations that help readers retain the right ideas.

To ensure that the audience retains the right takeaways from your case study presentation, you can try using some of the classic copywriting formulas to structure your delivery. These include:

  • AIDCA — short for Attention, Interest, Desire, Conviction, and Action. First, grab the audience’s attention by addressing the major problem. Next, pique their interest with some teaser facts. Spark their desire by showing that you know the right way out. Then, show a conviction that you know how to solve the issue—finally, prompt follow-up action such as contacting you to learn more.
  • PADS — is short for Problem, Agitation, Discredit, or Solution. This is more of a sales approach to case study narration. Again, you start with a problem, agitate about its importance, discredit why other solutions won’t cut it, and then present your option.
  • 4Ps — short for Problem, Promise, Proof, Proposal. This is a middle-ground option that prioritizes storytelling over hard pitches. Set the scene first with a problem. Then make a promise of how you can solve it. Show proof in the form of numbers, testimonials, and different scenarios. Round it up with a proposal for getting the same outcomes.

Take an Emotion-Inducing Perspective

The key to building a strong rapport with an audience is showing that you are one of them and fully understand what they are going through.

One of the ways to build this connection is by speaking from an emotion-inducing perspective. This is best illustrated with an example:

  1. A business owner went to the bank
  2. A business owner came into a bank branch

In the second case, the wording prompts listeners to paint a mental picture from the perspective of the bank employees — a role you’d like them to relate to. By placing your audience in the right visual perspective, you can make them more receptive to your pitches.

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How Long Should a Case Study Be?

One common question that arises when creating a case study is determining its length. The length of a case study can vary depending on the complexity of the problem and the level of detail you want to provide. Here are some general guidelines to help you decide how long your case study should be:

  • Concise and Informative: A good case study should be concise and to the point. Avoid unnecessary fluff and filler content. Focus on providing valuable information and insights.
  • Tailor to Your Audience: Consider your target audience when deciding the length. If you’re presenting to a technical audience, you might include more in-depth technical details. For a non-technical audience, keep it more high-level and accessible.
  • Cover Key Points: Ensure that your case study covers the key points effectively. These include the problem statement, the solution, and the outcomes. Provide enough information for the reader to understand the context and the significance of your case.
  • Visuals: Visual elements such as charts, graphs, images, and diagrams can help convey information more effectively. Use visuals to supplement your written content and make complex information easier to understand.
  • Engagement: Keep your audience engaged. A case study that is too long may lose the reader’s interest. Make sure the content is engaging and holds the reader’s attention throughout.
  • Consider the Format: Depending on the format you choose (e.g., written document, presentation, video), the ideal length may vary. For written case studies, aim for a length that can be easily read in one sitting.

In general, a written case study for business purposes often falls in the range of 1,000 to 2,000 words. However, this is not a strict rule, and the length can be shorter or longer based on the factors mentioned above.

Final Tip: Use Compelling Presentation Visuals

Our brain is wired to process images much faster than text. So when you are presenting a case study, always look for an opportunity to tie in some illustrations such as:

  • A product demo/preview
  • Processes chart
  • Call-out quotes or numbers
  • Custom illustrations or graphics
  • Customer or team headshots

Use icons to minimize the volume of text. Also, opt for readable fonts that can look good in a smaller size too.

Business Case Study Examples

To better understand how to create an effective business case study, let’s explore some examples of successful case studies:

Apple Inc.: Apple’s case study on the launch of the iPhone is a classic example. It covers the problem of a changing mobile phone market, the innovative solution (the iPhone), and the outstanding outcomes, such as market dominance and increased revenue.

Tesla, Inc.: Tesla’s case study on electric vehicles and sustainable transportation is another compelling example. It addresses the problem of environmental concerns and the need for sustainable transportation solutions. The case study highlights Tesla’s electric cars as the solution and showcases the positive impact on reducing carbon emissions. Amazon’s case study on customer-centricity is a great illustration of how the company transformed the e-commerce industry. It discusses the problem of customer dissatisfaction with traditional retail, Amazon’s customer-focused approach as the solution, and the remarkable outcomes in terms of customer loyalty and market growth.

Coca-Cola: Coca-Cola’s case study on brand evolution is a valuable example. It outlines the challenge of adapting to changing consumer preferences and demographics. The case study demonstrates how Coca-Cola continually reinvented its brand to stay relevant and succeed in the global market.

Airbnb: Airbnb’s case study on the sharing economy is an intriguing example. It addresses the problem of travelers seeking unique and affordable accommodations. The case study presents Airbnb’s platform as the solution and highlights its impact on the hospitality industry and the sharing economy.

These examples showcase the diversity of case studies in the business world and how they effectively communicate problems, solutions, and outcomes. When creating your own business case study, use these examples as inspiration and tailor your approach to your specific industry and target audience.

Finally, practice your case study presentation several times — solo and together with your team — to collect feedback and make last-minute refinements!

1. Business Case Study PowerPoint Template

To efficiently create a Business Case Study it’s important to ask all the right questions and document everything necessary, therefore this PowerPoint Template will provide all the sections you need.

Use This Template

2. Medical Case Study PowerPoint Template

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3. Medical Infographics PowerPoint Templates

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4. Success Story PowerPoint Template

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5. Detective Research PowerPoint Template

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6. Animated Clinical Study PowerPoint Templates

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As an expert in business strategy and communication, I've successfully employed case study analysis as a powerful tool for showcasing problem-solving approaches and success stories. My experience includes working with diverse teams of marketers, consultants, and sales professionals, where I've demonstrated a deep understanding of case study methodologies and their applications.

Now, let's delve into the key concepts covered in the article:

1. What is a Case Study?

The University of South Carolina's definition aptly captures the essence: a case study is investigative research into a problem, aiming to present or highlight solutions. In a business context, it provides insights into general business conditions, the main problem faced, methods applied, and outcomes gained using a specific tool or approach.

2. Why Case Studies are a Popular Marketing Technique

The article emphasizes that case studies aren't just about solving internal problems; they are a crucial part of content marketing. According to a 2020 Content Marketing Institute report, 69% of B2B marketers use case studies. They inform readers about potential solutions, soft-selling results achievable with the company's help, nurturing leads, and improving conversions. Case studies also enhance brand credibility in an era of fake news and dubious claims.

3. Popular Case Study Format Types

The article mentions that case studies come in various formats, including slide decks, downloadable PDFs, blog posts, and video presentations. Each format serves specific purposes and can be strategically utilized for different audiences and occasions.

4. How to Write a Case Study: a 4-Step Framework

The 4-step framework outlined includes:

  • Identifying the problem: Clearly defining the problem and setting the scene.
  • Explaining the solution: Focusing on the provided solution(s) and detailing the transformation.
  • Collecting testimonials: Incorporating the voice of customer data to add credibility.
  • Packaging the information in a slide deck: Structuring the case study in a clean and organized manner, using business case templates and designs.

5. How to Do a Case Study Presentation: 3 Proven Tips

The article highlights three key tips for an effective case study presentation:

  • Focus on Telling a Great Story: Making the customer the hero and creating a compelling narrative.
  • Experiment with Copywriting Formulas: Using classic copywriting formulas like AIDCA, PADS, or 4Ps for structuring the presentation.
  • Take an Emotion-Inducing Perspective: Building a connection with the audience by speaking from an emotion-inducing perspective.

6. How Long Should a Case Study Be?

The ideal length of a case study varies based on factors such as audience, complexity, and format. The article recommends being concise and informative, tailoring content to the audience, covering key points effectively, using visuals to enhance understanding, and keeping the audience engaged.

7. Final Tip: Use Compelling Presentation Visuals

Emphasizing the importance of visuals, the article suggests incorporating product demos, processes charts, call-out quotes, custom illustrations, graphics, and team headshots. Visual elements help in processing information faster.

8. Business Case Study Examples

The article provides real-world examples of successful business case studies from companies like Apple, Tesla, Amazon, Coca-Cola, and Airbnb. These examples illustrate how different industries effectively communicate problems, solutions, and outcomes in their case studies.

In conclusion, the comprehensive guide not only covers the theoretical aspects of case studies but also provides practical tips, templates, and examples for creating and presenting compelling business case studies.

How to Write and Present a Case Study (+Examples) - SlideModel (2024)
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