100 Best Case Study Questions for Your Next Customer Spotlight

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Brittany Fuller
Brittany Fuller

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Case studies and testimonials are useful to have on hand. They help you earn a prospect's trust, show them what life would be like as your customer, and validate that your product or service works.

marketing team coming up with case study questions

Consider creating a library of customer stories your sales team can use to share targeted and relevant content with your prospects via your website and sales proposals.

To build this library, not only would you need to know how to write a case study, but you'll also need to ask the right questions that will surface valuable details and insights.

The following list of 100 case study questions will help you build a narrative using the "Problem - Agitate - Solve" method. Use these prompts to get started and add more specific case study questions for your business or products.

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What makes a good case study questionnaire?

Certain key elements make up a good case study questionnaire.

One is that the questionnaire should feel like a conversation and not an interrogation. Some of the essential things that your questionnaire should cover include:

  • The problem faced by the client before choosing your organization
  • Why they chose your company
  • How your company solved the problem they faced
  • The measurable results of the service provided
  • If the client is willing to share data and metrics the prove the success of your service or product

You can adapt these considerations based on how your customers use your product and the specific answers or quotes that you want to receive.

What makes a good case study question?

A good case study question delivers a powerful message to leads in the decision stage of your prospective buyer's journey.

Since your client has agreed to participate in a case study, they're likely highly enthusiastic about the service you provide.

Thus, a good case study question hands the reins over to the client — an open-ended question that leaves them talking about how excellent your organization and the service you provide is.

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The Ultimate List of Case Study Questions

Categories for the best case study questions include:

Case Study Interview Questions About the Customer's Business

Knowing the customer's business is an excellent way of setting the tone for the case study.

Use these questions to get some background information about the company and its business goals. This information can be used to introduce the business at the beginning of the case study.

  1. Would you give me a quick overview of [company]? This is an opportunity for the client to describe the business in their own words. You'll get useful background information and it's an easy prompt to get the client talking.

  2. Can you describe your role? This will give you a better idea of the responsibilities they are subject to.

  3. How do your role and team fit into the company and its goals? Knowing how the team functions to achieve company goals will help you formulate how your solution involves all stakeholders.

  4. How long has your company been in business? Getting this information will help the reader gauge if the pain points are specific to a startup or new company vs. a veteran company.

  5. How many employees do you have? Another great descriptor for readers to have. They can compare the featured company size with their own.

  6. Is your company revenue available? If so, what is it? This will give your readers background information on the featured company's gross sales.

  7. Who is your target customer? Knowing who the target audience is will help you provide a better overview of their market for your case study readers.

  8. How does our product help your team or company achieve its objectives? Get specifics on how your product provided a solution. This is one of the most important questions because it is the basis of the case study. You want to be able to say "X company implemented our solution and achieved Y. "

  9. How are our companies aligned (mission, strategy, culture, etc.)? If any attributes of your company's mission or culture appealed to the client, call it out.

  10. How many people are on your team? What are their roles? This will help describe key players within the organization and their impact on the implementation of your solution.

Case Study Interview Questions About the Environment Before the Purchase

There are different ways to solve a problem, and when the readers see that the client considered other tools and processes before arriving at your service, it will build trust.

Learn which products, tools, and processes the customer used before purchasing your product. This will highlight thebusiness needs they had to fulfill.

  1. What was your team's process prior to using our product? This will give the reader a baseline to compare the results for your company's product.
  2. Were there any costs associated with the process prior to using our product? Was it more expensive? Was it worth the cost? How did affect the client's bottom line? This will be a useful metric to disclose if your company saved the client money or was more cost-efficient.
  3. What were the major pain points of your process prior to using our product? Describe these obstacles in detail. You want the reader to get as much information on the problem as possible as it sets up the reasoning for why your company's solution was implemented.
  4. Did our product replace a similar tool or is this the first time your team is using a product like this? Were they using a similar product? If so, having this information may give readers a reason to choose your brand over the competition.
  5. What other challenges were you and your team experiencing prior to using our product? The more details you can give readers regarding the client's struggles, the better. You want to paint a full picture of the challenges the client faced and how your company resolved them.
  6. Were there any concerns about how your customers would be impacted by using our product? Getting answers to this question will illustrate for readers the client's concerns about switching to your service. Your readers may have similar concerns and reading how your client worked through this process will be helpful.
  7. Why didn't you buy our product or a similar product earlier? Have the client describe any hesitations they had using your product. Their concerns may be relatable to potential leads.
  8. Were there any "dealbreakers" involved in your decision to become a customer? Describing how your company was able to provide a solution that worked within those parameters demonstrates how accommodating your brand is and how you put the customer first. It's also great to illustrate any unique challenges the client had to better explain their situation to the reader.
  9. Did you have to make any changes you weren't anticipating once you became a customer? Readers of your case study can learn how switching to your product came with some unexpected changes (good or bad) and how they navigated them.
  10. How has your perception of the product changed since you've become a customer? Get the interviewee to describe how your product changed how they do business and the perceptions of what they previously thought were possible to accomplish.

Case Study Interview Questions About the Decision Process

Readers of the case study will be interested in what influenced the decision-making process for the client. If they can relate to that process, there's a bigger chance they'll buy your product.

What factors did the customer consider before choosing your solution? The answers to these questions will help potential customers through their decision-making process.

  1. How did you hear about our product? If the client chose to work with you based on a recommendation or another positive case study, include that. It will demonstrate that you are a trusted brand with an established reputation for delivering results.
  2. How long had you been looking for a solution to this problem? This will add to the reader's understanding of how these particular challenges impacted the company before choosing your product.
  3. Were you comparing alternative solutions? Which ones? This will demonstrate to readers that the client explored other options before choosing your company.
  4. Would you describe a few of the reasons you decided to buy our product? Have the interviewee describe why they chose your product over the competition and any benefits your company offered that made you stand out.
  5. What were the criteria you used when making the decision to buy our product? This will give readers more background insight into the factors that impacted their decision-making process.
  6. Were there any high-level initiatives or goals that prompted the decision to buy? For example, was this decision motivated by a company-wide vision? Have your interviewee get specific about what prompted their decision and how your product was the obvious choice for the job.
  7. What was the buying process like? Did you notice anything exceptional or any points of friction? This is an opportunity for the client to comment on how seamless and easy the buying process was. Get them to describe what went well from start to finish.
  8. How would you have changed the buying process, if at all? This is an opportunity for you to fine-tune your process to accommodate future buyers.
  9. Who were the decision makers from your team that were involved in the buying process? This will give readers more background on the key players involved from executives to project managers. With this information, readers can see who they may potentially need to involve in the decision-making process on their teams.

Case Study Interview Questions About the Customer's Business Case

Ask about your product or solution's impact on the customer's employees, teams, metrics, and goals. These questions allow the client to praise the value of your service and tell others exactly what benefits they derived from it.

When readers review this part, it enforces the belief that the case study is credible.

  1. How long have you been using our product? This will help readers gauge how long it took to see results and your overall satisfaction with the product or service.
  2. How many different people at your company use our product? This will help readers gauge how they can adapt the product to their teams if similar in size.
  3. Are there multiple departments or teams using our product? This will demonstrate how great of an impact your product has made across departments.
  4. How do you and your team currently use the product? What types of goals or tasks are you using the product to accomplish? Get specifics on how the product actively helps the client achieve their goals.
  5. If there are other teams or departments using our product, do you know how they're using it? With this information, leads can picture how they can use your product across their own teams and how it may improve their workflow and metrics.
  6. What was the most obvious advantage you felt our product offered during the sales process? This should focus on the main reason the client chose your company over the competition. Have the interviewee explain the main benefit to using your product.
  7. Were there any other advantages you discovered after using the product more regularly? Your interviewee may have experienced some additional benefits from using your product. Have them describe in detail what these advantages are and how they've helped the company improve.
  8. Are there any metrics or KPIs you track with our product? What are they? The more numbers and data the client can provide, the better.
  9. Were you tracking any metrics prior to using our product? What were they? This will allow readers to get a clear before and after comparison of using your product.
  10. How has our product impacted your core metrics? This is an opportunity for your clients to really drive home how your product assisted them in hitting their metrics and goals.

Case Study Interview Questions About the Buying Team and Internal Advocates

See if there are any individuals at the customer's company who are advocates for your product.

  1. Are there any additional team members you consider to be advocates for our product? For example, does anyone stick out as a "power user" or product expert on your team? You may want to interview and include these power users in your case study as well.
  2. Is there anyone else on your team you think we should talk to? Again, the more people can share their experience using your product, the better.
  3. Are there any team members who you think might not be the biggest fans of our product or who might need more training? Providing extra support to those struggling with your product may improve their user experience and turn into an opportunity to not only learn about their obstacles but turn them into a product fan
  4. Would you share some details about how your team implemented our product? Get as much information as possible about the rollout. Hopefully, they'll gush about how seamless the process was.
  5. Who from your company was involved in implementing our product? This will give readers more insight into who needs to be involved for a successful rollout of their own.
  6. Were there any internal risks or additional costs involved with implementing our product? If so, how did you address them? This will give insight into the client's process and rollout and provide tips on what potential leads should be on the lookout for.
  7. Is there a training process in place for your team's use of our product? If so, what does it look like? If your company provided support and training to the client, have them describe that experience.
  8. About how long does it take a new team member to get up to speed with our product? This will help leads determine how much time it will take to onboard an employee to your using your product. If a new user can quickly get started seamlessly, it bodes well for you.
  9. What was your main concern about rolling this product out to your company? Describing their challenges in detail will provide readers with useful insight.
  10. What have people been saying about our product since they've started using it? Collect all the positive feedback you can to give your product more social proof.

Case Study Interview Questions About Customer Success

Has the customer found success with your product? Ask these questions to learn more.

  1. By using our product can you measure any reduced costs? If it has, you'll want to emphasize that savings in your case study.
  2. By using our product can you measure any improvements in productivity or time savings? Any metrics or specific stories your interviewee can provide will help demonstrate the value of your product.
  3. By using our product can you measure any increases in revenue or growth? Again, say it with numbers and data whenever possible.
  4. Are you likely to or have you recommended our product to a friend or colleague? Recommendations from existing customers are some of the best marketing you can get.
  5. How has our product impacted your success? Your team's success? Getting the interviewee to describe how your product played an integral role in solving their challenges will show leads that they can also have success using your product.
  6. In the beginning, you had XYZ concerns; how do you feel about them now? Let them explain how working with your company eliminated those concerns.
  7. I noticed your team is currently doing XYZ with our product; tell me more about how that helps your business. Illustrate to your readers how current customers are using your product to solve additional challenges. It will convey how versatile your product is.
  8. Have you thought about using our product for a new use case with your team or at your company? The more examples of use cases the client can provide, the better.
  9. How do you measure the value our product provides? Have the interviewee illustrate what metrics they use to gauge the product's success and how. This can go beyond numbers. Maybe your product improved company morale and how teams work together.
  10. What will it take for you and your team to get the most value out of our product? This will help you dive deeper into how your client operates and how you can best assist them.

Case Study Interview Questions About Product Feedback

Feedback is the breakfast of champions. The feedback from your clients can help improve the quality of your service.

Use the following questions to get feedback from the customer about the product.

  1. Is there anything about the product you would like to see changed or improved? Listen carefully to see where your product is falling short. You may be able to create another use case for your product or make other improvements.
  2. Do you have any feature requests or suggestions for our team? Have the client describe how they use the product and what features would make that process simpler. Changing the current interface or UI may improve the user experience.
  3. What is your favorite feature or part of our product? Why? Find out what your customers already love.
  4. What is the feature or part of our product that you or your team use most frequently? Why? If lots of customers are echoing the same answer about what they don't use, it may be time to phase out that feature.
  5. Have you used our customer support resources? If so, do you have any feedback from your experience? Customer service is a crucial part of your business. Make sure you are doing everything to retain customers by providing exceptional service.
  6. Have you checked out any of our support content or training resources recently? What do you think? Find out which materials are most helpful to your customers and which could be improved.
  7. Are there any content or support documents you would like us to work on and share? If the client can pinpoint what materials are lacking clarity or need improvement, address those first. Chances are they aren't the only customer experiencing that issue.
  8. Do you have any overall feedback or advice for us as a company? This could be gener suggestions or something specific. Anything the interviewee shares will be useful.
  9. Are there other members of your team who might have feedback for us? Getting feedback and perspectives from different team members will help you improve your product.
  10. Could we be doing anything else to keep you happy? While the client may have already provided answers to the questions above, give them the opportunity to add anything else that may not have been addressed.

Case Study Interview Questions About Willingness to Make Referrals

Ask the customer if they'd recommend your product to others. A strong recommendation will help potential clients be more open to purchasing your product.

  1. How do other companies in this industry solve the problems you had before you purchased our product? This will give you insight into how other companies may be functioning without your product and how you can assist them.
  2. Have you ever talked about our product to any of your clients or peers? What did you say? This can provide you with more leads and a chance to get a referral.
  3. How likely are you to recommend our product to a friend or client? Ideally, they would definitely refer your product to someone they know.
  4. Can you think of any use cases your customers might have for our product? Again, your interviewee is a great source for more leads. Similar industries may have similar issues that need solutions. They may be able to provide a use case you haven't come up with.
  5. What is your advice for other teams or companies who are tackling problems similar to those you had before you purchased our product? This is another opportunity for your client to talk up your product or service.
  6. Do you know someone in X industry who has similar problems to the ones you had prior to using our product? The client can make an introduction so you can interview them about their experience as well.
  7. I noticed you work with Company Y; do you know if they are having any pain points with these processes? This will help you learn how your product has impacted your client's customers and gain insight into what can be improved.
  8. Does your company participate in any partner or referral programs? Having a strong referral program will help you increase leads and improve customer retention.
  9. Can I send you a referral kit as a thank-you for making a referral and give you the tools to refer someone to us? This is a great strategy to request a referral while rewarding your existing customers.
  10. Are you interested in working with us to produce additional marketing content? The more opportunities you can showcase happy customers, the better.

Case Study Interview Questions to Prompt Quote-Worthy Feedback

People trust people, and quote-worthy feedback offers proof.

Enhance your case study with quotable soundbites from the customer. By asking these questions, prospects have more insight into other clients and their success with your product.

  1. How would you describe your process in one sentence prior to using our product? Ideally, this sentence would quickly and descriptively sum up the most prominent pain point or challenge with the previous process.
  2. What is your advice to others who might be considering our product? Readers can learn from your customer's experience.
  3. What would your team's workflow or process be like without our product? This will drive home the value your product provides and how essential it is to their business.
  4. Do you think the investment in our product was worthwhile? Why? Have your customer make the case for the value you provide.
  5. What would you say if we told you our product would soon be unavailable? What would this mean to you? Again, this illustrates how integral your product is to their business.
  6. How would you describe our product if you were explaining it to a friend? Your customers can often distill the value of your product to their friends better than you can.
  7. What do you love about your job? Your company? This gives the reader more background on your customer and their industry.
  8. What was the worst part of your process before you started using our product? Ideally, they'd reiterate how your product helped solve this challenge.
  9. What do you love about our product? Another great way to get the customer's opinion about what makes your product worth it in their own words.
  10. Why do you do business with us? Ideally, your interviewee will share how wonderful your business relationship is.

Case Study Interview Questions About the Customers' Future Goals

Ask the customer about their goals, challenges, and plans for the future. This will provide insight into how a business can grow with your product.

  1. What are the biggest challenges on the horizon for your industry? Chances are potential leads within the same industry will have similar challenges.
  2. What are your goals for the next three months? Knowing their short term goals will enable your company to get some quick wins for the client.
  3. How would you like to use our product to meet those challenges and goals? This will help potential leads understand that your product can help their business as they scale and grow.
  4. Is there anything we can do to help you and your team meet your goals? If you haven't covered it already, this will give your interviewee the opportunity to express how you can better assist them.
  5. Do you think you will buy more, less, or about the same amount of our product next year? This can help you gauge how your product is used and why.
  6. What are the growth plans for your company this year? Your team? This will help you gain insight into how your product can help them achieve future goals.
  7. How can we help you meet your long-term goals? Getting specifics on what your clients need help with will help you create a unique solution designed for their needs.
  8. What is the long-term impact of using our product? Get their feedback on how your product has created a lasting impact.
  9. Are there any initiatives that you personally would like to achieve that our product or team can help with? Again, you want to continue to provide products that help your customers excel.
  10. What will you need from us in the future? This will help you anticipate the customer's business needs.
  11. Is there anything we can do to improve our product or process for working together in the future? The more feedback you can get about what is and isn't working, the better.

How to Ask Your Customer for a Case Study

Before you can start putting together your case study, you need to ask your customer's permission. These email templates will come in handy.

If you have a customer who's seen success with your product, proactively send them this request:

If one of your customers has recently passed along some praise (to you, their account manager, your boss; on an online forum; to another potential customer; etc.), then send them a version of this email:

You can also find potential case study customers by usage or product data. For instance, maybe you see a company you sold to 10 months ago just bought eight more seats or upgraded to a new tier. Clearly, they're happy with the solution. Try this template:

1. Case studies are a form of customer advocacy.

If you haven't noticed, customers aren't always quick to trust a brand's advertisements and sales strategies.

Who can really blame them?

With every other brand claiming to be the best in the business, it's hard to sort exaggeration from reality. In the end, most customers will turn to a source that they trust for information: their peers, coworkers, and other customers.

This the most important reason why case studies are effective. They're testimonials given straight from previous customers and are backed with data and information supporting their claim.

If someone is considering your business, a case study is a much more convincing piece of marketing or sales material than traditional advertising.

2. Case studies provide a joint-promotion opportunity.

Your business isn't the only one that benefits from a case study. Customers participating in case studies benefit, too.

Think about it. Case studies are free advertisements for your customers. While they're not promoting their products or services, they're still getting the word out about their business. And, the case study highlights how successful their business is — showing interested leads that they're on the up and up.

3. Case studies are easily sharable.

Whether you're a salesperson trying to close a deal, or a marketer trying to educate people about your brand, case studies are great to have on hand because you can easily share them with leads, prospects, and clients.

Whether you embed them on your website, or save them as a PDF, you can simply send a link to share your case study with others. They, in turn, can share that link with their peers and colleagues, and so on and so forth.

Case studies can also be useful during a sales pitch. Say a customer is explaining a problem that was solved in a case study, you can quickly surface that document and share it with them in a timely manner. In sales, timing is everything, and this could be that quick-thinking argument that convinces a customer to buy from you.

4. Case studies build rapport with your customers.

I'd love to tell you that creating a case study takes no time or effort at all. While case studies are very useful, they do require some back and forth with your customers to obtain the exact feedback you're looking for.

The good news is this builds rapport with your most loyal customers. You get to know them on a personal level, and they'll become more than just your most valuable clients.

And, the better the rapport you have with them, the more likely they'll be to advocate for your business. They'll want to point potential leads and prospects to their case study and boast about how great one of your products or services is.

5. Case studies are less opinionated than customer reviews.

The difference between a case study and a customer review is the data backing it. Customer reviews are typically based on the customer's opinion of your brand. While they might write a glowing review, it's completely subjective and there's rarely empirical evidence supporting their claim.

Case studies, on the other hand, are more data-driven. While they'll still talk about how great your brand is, they support this claim with quantitative data that's relevant to the reader. That way, it's not just a customer saying how amazing your product or service is; it's a complete argument with objective data backing the customer's opinion.

Creating an Effective Case Study

If you want to create an effective case study, it needs to be credible, genuine, and clear that your product or service is better than your competition. It should explain why certain customers are the right fit for your business and how your company can help meet their specific needs. That way, someone in a similar situation can use your case study as a testimonial for why they should choose your business.

Use the questions above to create an ideal customer case study questionnaire. By asking your customers the right questions, you can obtain valuable feedback that can be shared with potential leads and convert them into loyal customers.

This article was originally published in June 2021 and has been updated for comprehensiveness. 

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