When you’re striving to improve your product, brand, or marketing, conducting case study interviews with your customers can provide invaluable insight into your business. Yes, customer case studies can provide content that your sales and marketing teams can use in order to attract additional attention from prospective clients. But they can also give you fresh insight into your business’s strengths and weaknesses so you can identify opportunities for growth, particularly if you ask the right case study interview questions.
If you’ve never done a case study before, you may be struggling to wrap your head around how to approach this process—how do you write case study interview questions that are productive and impactful? Read on to learn what you need to know in order to conduct a great case study interview, even if it’s your first time.
What is a case study?
One of the most difficult tasks of a business is proving to potential customers that you really can do all you say you can, so that they feel confident in signing on to work with you. One of the best ways to go about showcasing your professional skillset and attracting new business is through case studies—in particular, by interviewing former or existing customers in order to simultaneously conduct market research and generate marketing materials.
The kind of customer interviews conducted for the purpose of business case studies can be tricky to execute. You want to learn about what went great in your collaboration, while also soliciting feedback that could help steer the improvements you foster within your own company. How do you do both of these things at once?
Plainly put, it’s no small feat. There are many challenges in conducting these kinds of interviews with customers, including:
- Limited staff resources: Your staff members are busy people—finding time for them to plan, structure, and conduct these types of case study interviews can be tricky.
- Difficulty scheduling time with willing customers: Your customers are equally busy individuals—and it’s even harder to sell a customer on carving out their time for work like this than for your own staff members.
While there are certainly hurdles involved in getting this information collected, the effort can really be worth it in the end. The insight customers are able to share with you as a business owner is priceless—and the fact that these case studies can also become impactful marketing tools is an added bonus. But in order to make things easier on yourself and more efficient, preparing carefully constructed, highly targeted case study interview questions is essential.
How to write the best case study questions
How do you actually write a case study interview question that’s sure to get at the heart of a customer’s most honest feedback, while also serving as a testimonial your marketing staff can use to generate new interest in your business? It’s a tricky task to take on, but not an impossible one. Here are some things to keep in mind as you set out to establish a set of case study interview questions that work well for your company.
First, you want to structure your case study interview like a conversation—while you’re looking for thorough information, you don’t want your customer to feel like they’re involved in an interrogation. The fact that they’re willing to participate in the interview is a sign that they valued your product, service, or collaboration. They’re doing you a favor by supplying this information for your company, so you want to capture the essential information in as few questions as possible—but you also want to ensure the questions you ask are succinct, friendly, and flow naturally from one to another.
Strive for open-ended questions that give customers the opportunity to expand on the parts of their experience that they remember most fondly. While you’re looking for specific information, you also want your customer to feel they have room to share what they found important about working with you.
To give you a sense of what kinds of questions you should include in your survey, here are the top 10 best case study interview questions to ask in 2023:
- What problems were you facing before you chose to work with us?
- Out of the many businesses available to help, what made you choose ours?
- How long have you been using our product/resource/service?
- How many people on your team are involved with our product/resource/service?
- How has our product/resource/service helped to improve your initial problem?
- Can you provide a measurable example of how the problem has improved?
- What concerns did you have about our product/resource/service initially? How do you feel about those concerns today?
- Have any new concerns or issues arisen since you started using our product/resource/service? How could we improve, if so?
- What features or developments could make our product/resource/service even more useful or beneficial for your company?
- Would you recommend our product/resource/service to a trusted peer in your industry? Why or why not?
When approaching a case study, you should always start with a genuine desire to hear feedback from your customers and provide improvements to their issues wherever possible. Spend sufficient time carefully defining your goal, crafting a collection of succinct questions that help you get to the information you need quickly, and preparing appropriately to execute the interview. While your customers are eager to share their positive experiences with you, it’s important to respect everyone’s time along the way.
If you’re looking for a way to circumvent some of the hurdles that come along with differences in time zones or geography in this kind of work, consider a tool like Voiceform. By asking case study interview questions through Voiceform, you can interview a number of customers simultaneously, allowing them to engage the questions at a time that is most convenient to them. Plus, you’ll have access to insights that will make market research and creating marketing materials easier than ever. When you’re ready to begin, start your trial with Voiceform or book a demo!