ATA: What makes a good case study?

Every now and again I find myself searching for social media case studies, and whenever this happens it’s always a monumental pain in the proverbials. People aren’t great at interpreting a case study from outside of their own context, so I like to find something that they can immediately relate to. But it can be really hard to find something relevant on short notice so I often wind up going back to my old favourites and then having to tell the client “Well, this may not sound exactly like you, but trust me, it’s more relevant than it looks.”

Although there are loads of social case studies on the web, they aren’t particularly well organised. There are various lists kicking about, but many of them are poorly organised and it takes ages to plough through them. So I’m considering a quick and dirty solution in the form of a Google spreadsheet and form so that we can gather more detailed information together. What kind of information would be useful to you? Here are some possible ideas:

  • Name of the company
  • Whether the project was internal or external
  • Date of case study
  • Tools used
  • Is this good practice or bad practice
  • Overview
  • Link to full write-up
  • Name of person writing is up
  • Style of case study (blog post, formal case study etc)

What else would you like to see? I’ll use your comments to create the spreadsheet and will post the form here when it’s ready.