The Problem with Case Studies

– Case studies are often half truths and manipulate data.
– Case studies typically focus on going from nothing to something, rather than something to something more.
– The quality of the audience and timing are key variables in determining the success of a case study.Develop a more critical and discerning approach to evaluating case studies and their relevance to your specific brand and goals.I hate case studies. They are all half-truths and highlight data manipulation. A test has one of three outcomes: it makes things better, it makes things worse, or nothing changes. Most of the time, a case study shows up in the normal format: 1. Brand was struggling with something, 2. Agency or company did something, 3. This many gains happened. With a business constantly making tons of changes at any given time, how do you clearly point to the changes being made as the reason something worked? You can’t. Behind all the great case studies that you read, the one variable that matters more than everything else is the quality of the audience and the timing of when they are looking to purchase. If anyone can explain to me how you can hold those two variables equal, I’m all for it. The truth is, you can’t. Case studies are an excuse for people to highlight work that they think proves something, even though there is no real way for them to prove that something actually worked. The reason is that most of the time when people show a case study, it’s all about going from nothing to something, not something to something more. The problem is that most brands don’t know the questions to ask to determine whether or not their agency is doing work correctly or making the right decisions. Most agencies don’t even have test sheets. Strategies aren’t unique to brands; they can’t be, as it wouldn’t be cost-efficient. The scariest thing that I keep seeing is that the industry is process washing. People see one thing work for someone and just apply the same formula to other brands. Every brand is unique, every position is unique, every goal is unique. I’d get more as a brand out of failed case studies. But that’s me. It’s like reviews, you need to see the balance. #ecommerce #casestudy #marketing

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