A wise man one told me the first thing to remember about writing a case study is that the case should have a problem for the readers to solve. The case should have enough information in it that readers can understand what the problem is and, after thinking about it and analyzing the info, the reader should be able to see the proposed solution.
A good case study is more than just a description. It is information arranged in such a way that the reader is put in the same position as the case writer was at the beginning when they were faced with a new situation and asked to figure it out.
A good case study needs three basic elements: a challenge faced; the solution found; and, most important, the benefits gained. One of the most important things to consider are the images you use.
Gregory Ciotti at unbounce.com highlighted a couple of points worth considering:
The idea that a picture of a person might help us connect with them easier certainly isn’t groundbreaking, but it’s good to have some solid research in this area to prove the hypothesis.
Researchers looked at how images affected a profession that doesn’t often interact with customers (radiologists). They found that photos of patients increased empathy among doctors, and even changed the way they treated patients. Doctors in turn described a better feeling of being connected with patients who had photos attached to their medical reports than those without.
Online entrepreneurs and marketers often have a very similar problem
This time though, it’s in reverse: how can you create a better connection with customers if they won’t meet you in person the majority of the time?
The answer is to use images wisely, both on the sales and service side of your pages.
It’s hard to connect with a small business team with a huge list of names. Get personal with customers and allow them to connect with you more easily by implementing images. Similarly, sales pages can benefit by having REAL (read: not crappy stock photos) pictures of staff, customers, or whoever else may relate well with potential buyers.
When making snap judgements about “facts,” researchers have found that photos (even irrelevant photos) increase our likelihood to accept them as true.
A study with undergrads tested this by taking “uninformative” photos and pairing them with BOTH rumours and random obscure facts.
In the first study, they asked the students to confirm if a certain celebrity was alive or not, and in a subsequent study, they asked random facts and told them to confirm if the facts were true. Each decision was to be made quickly to simulate “snap judgement”.
The results? …the students were more likely to wager that a fact was true when it was accompanied by an uninformative photo.
This is the reason that digital publishers on Kindle still make realistic book mockups for their e-books even though they are essentially selling a small file: it makes things seem more “legitimate” in the eyes of the consumer.
When this research is tied into what we know about human faces, it can be easy to see why photos of products and people play such an integral role in increasing conversions.