Case Study Copywriting:Using the Indirect Approach in Your Copywriting for Maximum ResultsBy Michael Gladkoff – Word Nerds
The importance of the indirect approach in copywriting shouldn’t be underestimated. I thinkevery copywriter should read
by B H Liddell Hart. The author was a historian whogreatly influenced armoured warfare in the twentieth century. In his book
he showshow the indirect approach has led to military victories throughout history. Here is LiddellHart’s summary of the indirect approach.
In strategy the longest way round is often the shortest way there; a direct approach to the object exhausts the attacker and hardens the resistance by compression, whereas an indirect approach loosens the defender's hold by upsetting his balance.
I’m not saying that your prospect is your enemy, but most people view unfamiliar companieswith some scepticism. Everybody has had a bad experience with a company, so if they don’tknow your organisation, you need to win the customer over to your side with goodcopywriting.
How Can The Indirect Approach Be Applied To Copywriting?
Let’s look at one way the indirect approach is applied to copywriting. Case studies are agreat example. These are used mostly in a business to business context. When you use acase study to promote your product or service it’s not what you call a ‘hard sell’. Instead youshow your prospect how you solved a problem or met the needs of a company or person.
Copywriting Tips for Better Case Studies
I’ve seen many bad examples of case studies. The most common problem with many casestudies I’ve analysed is that copywriters use a sales approach that’s best for copywritingother promotional formats (such as brochures or websites).You don’t want to keep saying that your company is the best when writing a case study. In acase study, you want to show how your product or service met a customer’s needs or solvedtheir problem.The basic outline for writing a case study is:
Background and introduction of the problem
Solution – how it was chosen and implemented
Results – how the situation has improved
Copywriting the Case Study Introduction
In the background to the case study you explain the customer’s problem. It’s best to showhow the issue was hurting their organisation. Emphasise their pain in the case study, butdon’t exaggerate. I wrote a case for an automation equipment provider that helped a dairyproducts manufacturer reduce waste when packaging yogurt. At the beginning of the casestudy I wrote that they were wasting 3,000 kilos of yogurt each day because their automationequipment couldn’t accurately fill the yogurt containers.