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A case study video, also known as a testimonial video, is a great way to show your customers that your product or service actually works for real people like them.  It also allows them to picture themselves having the same success.  Here are our top tips for creating engaging and effective case study videos:

1. Keep your case study videos short

In the age of online viewing, where there is so much content to compete with, the golden rule is that ‘less is more’. 1 minute is a great length for a case study video.  It’s just enough time to showcase the all the key elements of the story, whilst keeping it short enough to maintain the viewer’s attention.

1 minute also works for social media channels, including Instagram, which has a 60 second limit.  Creating a 1 minute video means you won’t have to re-edit your films for these platforms

1. Consider batch filming   

The most cost-effective way to create case studies is to batch film.  Production costs are based on daily filming rates, so it’s best to film all your case studies in one day to keep costs down.  There will also be economies of scale in the edit process.

Filming case studies on location

There are generally two ways of filming case study videos.  The first option is to do the filming ‘on location’.  This means going to the customer to get atmospheric shots of the them to illustrate the interview and make it visual and engaging.  For example, if you were filming an engineer recruitment case study, seeing shots of the engineer at work, on location, on a production line would be more engaging than just an interview of them at your offices.

If you are filming on location, it will usually take 2 to 3 hours to film each story.  If the customers are within reasonable driving distance apart, you could film around 3 per day.

Bringing your customers to you to film

The second way to film a batch of case studies is to bring all the interviewees to one location.  You can film a lot more (up to 10 a day) with this method. The location could be your offices, or you could even tag the filming onto an event that your customers will be attending.

With this method, you won’t get visuals of them to illustrate the interview.  One way of getting around this is to use photographs to illustrate the interview.

Here’s an example of a case study video that we created for an aviation training customer using interviews filmed at their open day event and photographs:

3. Choose the right customer

When considering which case studies to pick for your videos, there are a number of important factors to consider.

Think about you target audience

The first question to ask yourself is ‘who is my target audience?’.  For example, for a training company that up- skill women who have had a career break, a woman aged 35 to 50 who is getting back to work after having children, would be a good subject.

Chose strong stories

Next you have to think about finding a strong story.  You’re looking for someone who is enthusiastic about your product or service.  You also need a customer whose journey clearly demonstrates the benefits of your business. For example, a digital marketing company would be looking for a customer that has experienced significant growth in the business, as a direct result of the company’s work.

Find a good talker

Once you have some good stories to consider, you’ll need to think about choosing a customer who is a good talker.  You’re looking for someone who is warm and can talk openly, from the heart. If you have someone who has a strong story on paper, but they have told you they aren’t confident and probably wouldn’t enjoy the experience, then it would be advisable to find a more confident talker with a slightly less strong story.

Consider diversity

The last thing to consider is about reflecting diversity in your case studies.  If you were doing three case studies about apprenticeships, you’d want to choose three different industries to showcase.   For example, a retail role, an office-based role and a construction role.  It’s also a good idea to consider representing a varied mix of ethnicity and genders in your case studies.  You might also consider trying to challenge gender stereotypes, where possible, like this apprentice case study video that features a female electrician:

4. Use a simple structure

The basic elements of a case study story are:

  • Background – who they are and what they do
  • The problem – what was the situation before they got involved with your company and what was the problem that needed to be solved?
  • The solution – what your company did for them and what was their experience of working with you
  • The outcome – what benefits have they seen a result of your work
5. Don’t send the interview questions in advance

When it comes to the shoot day, it’s important to get the most out of your client in interview.  A top tip here is to NEVER to send interview questions in advance.  This is because if people prepare, they are likely to sound scripted and wooden on camera.  People will usually ask for interview questions, so give them a rough idea of the themes and explain they will sound more authentic if they don’t prepare their answers in advance.

6. Include a Call to Action

It’s a great idea to include a clear call to action at the end of your video.  Whether it be a phone number, website URL or email address, make sure you use this opportunity to speak to your target audience whilst they are engaged.

7. Get your case study videos seen!

As well as creating the case study videos, you’ll need to think about a strategy to ensure people see them!

In the first instance, you’ll want to put a case study on your website but make sure it’s in the right place. For example, it would be more effective to place a case study on the webpage that outlines one of your key services, as opposed to placing it on a generic web page called ‘Videos’.

Optimise your video for social media

Publish your videos on social media but make sure they are correctly formatted for sites like LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.  The first thing to consider is that most social media videos are viewed without sound.  According to a study, 85% percent of Facebook videos are viewed without sound.  This means you’ll need to add captions.

You may also consider editing your videos so they are a 1×1 square format for mobile viewing, although this will cost more in post-production.

Show your case study video at events

Remember to show your case study videos at events, pitches and presentations.  Breaking up presentations with a short video is a great way to engage the audience and demonstrate the value of your work.

Bounce Video is run by BAFTA-winning former BBC Producer, Grace Gibbons, and specialises in helping businesses of all sizes create compelling case studies. You can find out more information about our case study video packages here.