Execute the Creation of Your Case Study

Devon-McDonald by

This is a part of a series that was created to help you create case studies for your company. This series will walk through the process, necessary roles, in addition to guides for each role to help your company get started quickly.

From start to finish, case study creation can take anywhere from a couple weeks to several months – it is up to you to establish expectations with your freelancers. As a reference, it takes OpenView four weeks to create a case study. Be prepared that often times, the external case study participants (your customers) may take awhile to schedule a call/interview with the writer. Your content is probably not their top priority. Nevertheless, this customer has agreed to help you by being featured in your company collateral, so you must be patient and do whatever you can to help your writer and customer connect.

Here are the steps involved with producing a case study:

  1. Choose your first topic from the list of predetermined case study ideas.
  2. Get approval and permission from your desired customer to be featured in your company’s collateral
  3. Make sure your company’s employees who were involved with the engagement are comfortable with being featured in the case study.
  4. Determine the best internal and external resources for your writer to interview for the main storyline.
  5. Create a short summary for your writer explaining the subject matter and your vision for the document (the customer’s problem, your company’s solution, the implementation process, and the outcome/results).
  6. Customize your SOW and present it to the freelance writer articulating the focus, payment, and due date (OpenView typically assigns the due date 2 to 2.5 weeks out). VERY IMPORTANT: Have a phone meeting with your writer to make sure he/she is completely aware of your expectations and that there is agreement on the SOW.
  7. Create e-mail introductions between your writer and the internal and external resources.
  8. Review and edit the writer’s first draft and provide feedback.
  9. Once you are comfortable with the write-up, send it to those who are being featured in the case study to make sure that they are satisfied with the content.
  10. Ask a supervisor to review the final version of the copy to ensure that it is error-free.
  11. Send the final draft of the write-up to your designer and articulate your vision for the design. Be sure to discuss the date that you expect to have the first draft.
  12. Review and edit the designer’s first draft, and provide feedback.
  13. Ask a supervisor to review the final version of the case study to ensure that it is error-free.

Next week, I’ll explain how to decide which methods to use to distribute and showcase your case studies.