My high school’s motto is, “Non Vox Sed Votum.” It means, “Not words, but deeds.” The purpose is clear: don’t just talk the talk. Walk the walk. While this is a great motto for teenagers as they grow into young adults (it has certainly stayed with me), it’s also a great motto for agencies seeking more ideal clients.
When looking for the right agency to hire, potential clients are looking to see what you’ve done, not what you say you can do. They want to see tangible work, and more importantly, the results. They want to see the deeds, not just hear the words.
And one of the best ways to showcase the deeds, ironically, is by telling them what you’ve done with podcast case studies.
Recent data from Edison Research shows that over 78% of Americans are familiar with podcasting. 57% have listened to one. That’s a 6% increase in 2 years!
Podcasts also help build trust faster. Each week, your listeners are inviting you into their ears and giving you some attention. It’s like you’re speaking directly to them, and as a result, they feel like they know you.
Finally, podcasts are convenient. 85% of people listen to podcasts because they like that they can do other things while listening. I like to do chores and mow the lawn. And I definitely can’t do either while I’m reading.
What is a Podcast Case Study?
So it’s no secret that podcasting is a growing medium. Every day there is more evidence to suggest that if you’re an agency, you should have a podcast, just like you have a blog.
And just like a blog, your podcast is the perfect place for you to showcase your work through case studies. In fact, back in 2018, Seth Godin said podcasting is the new blogging. The only difference is that instead of writing about the case study, you’re talking about it!
This is great because case studies tell a story. There’s no better place to actually tell the story than on your podcast.
Benefits of Podcast Case Studies
I know what you’re thinking: is this really better? I’ll let you decide: here are some benefits and drawbacks, starting with benefits.
Podcasting is an intimate medium. With text, you’re at the mercy of the reader to interpret what you’ve written correctly. With spoken word, your inflection can really drive home your points. People can hear the passion, fear, and resolve in your voice.
You can also have your clients weigh in with an audio testimonial or Q&A. Hearing how happy your clients are can do a lot to convince potential customers to go with you. Hear them talk about the results you delivered — that’s on a whole other level!
Plus, potential clients can listen to the case study when they don’t have time to read it. Remember: 85% of podcast listeners like them for the convenience.
Drawbacks of Podcast Case Studies
There is one key aspect missing from an audio-only format: images. They say pictures are worth 1,000 words. That’s a lot of talking to communicate what a single screenshot can show a potential client.
Luckily, the definition of a podcast is evolving, and video can definitely be a part of it. Plus, you can always include pictures in the show notes.
You’ll likely want some text, for accessibility and SEO purposes, so you’ll need either transcripts or written text.
My recommendation: write out the case study, and then read it for your podcast (as a bonus, you can start with case studies you’ve already written).
Structuring Your Podcast Case Study
Assuming you’re convinced that you should start a podcast and have case studies, let’s talk about how to structure them. Earlier I mentioned that case studies should tell a story. And following the Hero’s Journey, popularized by Joseph Campbell, you should position your client as the hero, with you as the guide.
Introducing Your Hero and Setting Up the Problem
First, you should open with your client and the problem facing them. This is Luke Skywalker and the need to complete his Jedi training to help defeat the Empire. It’s the author who needs to gain the trust of readers so they’ll buy her book, or even better, hire her.
You can do this however you see fit — a short bio of the client and the problem they were facing, or even a sound bite from the client themselves, describing their struggles and what set them on their journey to find a better solution.
Introducing You as the Guide
Next, it’s time to introduce the guide. This is the Yoda to Luke Skywalker, or the coach to help the author build audience trust.
In this case, you are the guide. And while listeners likely already know about you, you can talk specifically about why you were the perfect guide for this problem. What solution did you provide better than anyone else? Why did the client end up hiring you?
Input from the client can be big here.
Tip: You can use a tool like ZipMessage to get feedback from your clients. Send 3-5 prompts and have them answer, with short breaks in between. Then you can chop up their audio (or video), and insert it into your podcast.
Your Solution to the Problem
Now that we know the players and the problem, it’s time to introduce the solution. Luke’s rigorous training on Degobah. The podcast the author sets up to connect with her audience and build trust.
For your case study, talk about how you looked at your client’s problem, and came up with the perfect solution to help them move to the next level. Be as detailed as you’d like by talking about your approach, why you thought the solution would work, and how you implemented it alongside your client.
The Results and a Testimonial
The most highlight in the case study is the results. The payoff comes for the audience when Luke (spoiler) brings Darth Vader back from the Dark Side, once again becoming Anakin. It’s where we find out that the author’s podcast brings in several books sales and leads per episode.
Let the client talk about the results in their own words if you can. Ask them how you solved their problem, and how it helped them in their business. Did they save time? Make more money? Finally make that hire? Try to get them to talk numbers — either specific values or percentages.
Then you can wrap things up with your own thoughts.
Your Call to Action
Once you go through your case study, you need a clear Call to Action (CTA). This should encourage listeners to get in touch to see how you can help them solve their problems. If they’ve stuck around until the end of the episode, they’re probably the right fit!
The URL should be easy to remember and easily speakable. Remember, most people are probably doing something else while listening, and will take action later, or at the very least, from their phone.
A special offer (like a free consulting call or PDF) is a great incentive to get people to reach out.
Speaking Directly to Ideal Clients
Podcast case studies can be the perfect content to help you speak directly to the needs of your ideal clients.
Launching a podcast will give you a new outlet for those case studies (and other content), and a way to help get people to know, like, and trust you faster.