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The Power of Case Studies


What is a case study?


Case studies are real people who are involved in the story. For instance, a story about the cost-of-living crisis would need a person affected by the rising interest rates, the rising food prices, or the rising cost of bills. This could be a mother of four who is trying to feed her family but faces the challenge of financial insecurity, or a small business owner who is struggling to keep up with their bills and prosper from their career.


Why are they important?


Within journalism, it is important to connect stories to people. It needs to be relatable, and to see a person who has been directly affected by the issue can make the coverage significantly more powerful and emotive. News needs to be interesting and engaging, and a case study can bring the story to life. It also gives a voice to the people where they can share their own personal experiences in the hope of educating and connecting with others. Audiences therefore gain a deeper connection and understanding of the issue being broadcast.


Who is the right case study?


There is no right or wrong case study necessarily, but it should be someone who is directly involved and impacted. Someone who represents a certain group of people who are affected by the issue. The important thing to remember with any story is to ask why is this important, why should people care, and why does it matter to the audience? Well, the case study is there to aid in explaining and showcasing this.


Mirroring the newsroom


It is important within broadcast PR to mirror broadcast newsrooms. Working in synergy with the news will ensure a strong story has the best chance of attracting producers. News producers look for research, timeliness, social impact, and importantly, a case study to deepen the quality of the story. News shines a light on issues to educate and in some cases highlight a call to action. As a result, the audience needs to be emotionally connected to the piece and seeing an everyday person represent the subject matter answers the question of why we should care about this story – because it is affecting people like them. It is more challenging for producers to find case studies over spokespeople due to factors such as privacy and whether the person wants to speak out on the matter in the first place. For that reason, it makes a pitch notably stronger when a case study is readily available and has an option on the subject matter that they want to speak out about.

 

With the element of a case study, you can vastly increase the impact and importance of your campaign. Producers will be more engaged in the pitch and audiences will be able to relate or empathise with the story at hand. If you would like to learn more about using case studies within your marketing and PR activity, click here.

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