Before getting into copywriting, I had a crappy office job that paid terribly.
And I had no clue what I wanted to do with my life.
That led me down a personal development rabbit hole. I read books like Awaken the Giant Within — which was great.
As I got into direct-response marketing, I studied Tony Robbins even more. I listened to him on I Love Marketing and learned a ton from his podcasts with Jay Abraham. (Here are links to Part 1 and Part 2 of those interviews.)
I love the work Tony does helping people take control of their lives and live up to their full potential.
The other day, I went to TonyRobbins.com to see what he has for case studies.
Since he’s been at this for decades, I figured his site would be littered with thousands of people sharing stories of how Tony changed their lives.
Shockingly, that wasn’t the case.
Sure, Tony has a bunch of testimonials. But there weren’t in-depth stories that showed the full journey people went through using Tony’s flagship programs (Unleash the Power Within and Date with Destiny.)
Tony does, however, have a few in-depth case studies for his Business Mastery program.
I read one about a chiropractor, Joe Graffeo, who increased profits 30% in a year using Business Mastery.
It was a great case study. It even followed the Hero’s Journey formula I use for my case studies. (You can learn that formula in my free book here.)
Here’s a section-by-section breakdown of this case study. I’ll cover what made this story so powerful plus a few tips on how to improve it so it drives even more sales.
Case Study Breakdown
Section 1: The Headline and subhead
The headline and subhead do a great job calling out a specific avatar.
They mention how this story is about a chiropractic business. So other chiropractors and people with similar business models will be interested right away.
The subhead then mentions how this is a “mom and pop” business. Now, people who see themselves as having a “mom and pop” business will be sucked in as well.
From there, the subhead gives clear, concrete results. They mention how this person grew his profit 30% within a year. This is a great result because it’s both desirable and believable. If it was a story about a 250% profit increase, people might be turned off immediately because they don’t believe it.
After sharing the tangible results, they go into the intangible results. This is something I always do early in my case studies. Because it’s not just about what people achieve, it’s about how that impacts them.
In this case, they talk about how the owner built his confidence and became a better leader.
Those are particularly great results for this audience. People who turn to Tony Robbins for help are the type who care about their own growth. They want to hear how they can become more confident and better leaders.
What’s great about the mention of “better leader” is that this suggests that people respect and listen to this person more. So there’s an implied promise of “not only can this program help you increase profit, it can also make people respect and look up to you.” So people will feel extra motivation to buy knowing this helps them with more than just money.
Section 2: The Introduction
After the headline, they dive into the story of the case study subject, Joe Graffeo. They start with general background info and talk about how Joe’s parents started a chiropractic clinic that Joe joined once he grew up.
Quick tip to improve this section:
This is a great introduction. It provides context and gives people a chance to see this is a real “mom and pop” business. And people love to root for “mom and pop” businesses.
But this intro could be even more powerful if it included two things.
First, they could go deeper into why this business is important to Joe. In the intro, they talk about how he learned his “true calling was helping people.” But that is super vague. Every job involves helping people. If they want to connect to the readers, they should go into why helping people as a chiropractor is so important. Or talk about what this family business means to Joe.
Doing this would help the reader connect to their own passion for growing their business. And the more they feel that passion, the more likely they will be to buy a program that will help them grow their business.
Second, they could have gone deeper into the struggle Joe had in his business. What was the core problem? What did that look like? How did that problem impact his life and relationships? Was there a specific low point he realized he needed help?
This would add more drama that would pull readers in. Plus, the reader likely has a similar struggle. So sharing Joe’s specific challenge gets the reader to go “Oh! That’s what I need help with too!” And readers would start to see how Business Mastery is perfect for their specific problem.
Section 3: The Breakthrough
This next section is fantastic.
In it, they talk about a specific breakthrough Joe had through the Business Mastery seminar.
They mention how Joe discovered that his true gift in business was to be an “artist/producer.” And his challenge was that he struggled in the leadership role.
They even share a video where Tony talks about how every business owner has one of three natural “gifts” — you’re either an artist/producer, a manager, or an entrepreneur. And Tony goes on to explain what each role means.
This provides great context for Joe’s story because now we know what him discovering he was an artist/producer” meant.
It’s also a valuable lesson in itself. Tony talking about the 3 “gifts” gives the reader a chance to identify their own gift. Getting this insight into themselves not only feels good, it’s helpful. It shows them what their strengths and weaknesses are. And learning about their weaknesses helps them understand why they have this current problem in their business. (It also helps them feel that their struggle is normal and there is nothing wrong with them. And that’s important because if people feel they are broken or hopeless, they won’t buy.)
Sharing this lesson also positions Tony as the only person who can help them. Because Tony helped them understand the true cause of their problem. Since he’s the only one talking about this deeper cause he naturally becomes the best person to solve it.
How to make this section even better
I got confused reading this section. When I first read how Joe discovered he was an “artist/producer,” I didn’t know what that meant.
Tony explains that in the video. But there is no copy that tells you Tony will explain what that means in the video. A simple line telling you “you’ll discover what that means — and which “gift” you have — in this video” would keep readers from getting confused.
Also, it would be great if they dug deeper here and shared an example of what “failing as a leader” looked and felt like for Joe.
Maybe they could go into detail on how he was stuck working 60 hours a week and missed out on time with his wife. Or how he was worried the business would fall apart if he took a week off.
A specific example can add drama that pulls the reader in. It also likely the reader has a similar problem. So sharing detail here gets the reader to see how Business Mastery is perfect for them.
Section 4: Results
Next, they dive into the tangible results Joe got from the Business Mastery program.
What I love about this is they don’t just tell you the results, they show them. They add a graphic that makes the 30% growth really stand out. They show you how Joe’s business grew just 5% over six years. Then, thanks to Business Mastery, profit grew 30%. in a year.
How to make this section even better
The 30% growth is awesome. But what I’d love them to dive deeper into what this growth meant for Joe and his family.
Did it provide more security so they’re not worried about bills anymore?
Does he have more time to be home with his family?
Show why this growth mattered and paint a picture of what life is like as a result of that growth. This is critical because earning more profit isn’t what people want — they want what that extra profit gets them. The security…the pride… the sense of accomplishment… making other people jealous… those are the deeper drives that motivate people. So sharing what that growth meant helps tap into the reader’s deeper desires for growing their own business. And they start to see how their dreams can be a reality through Business Mastery.
Section 5: The transformation
This next section is fantastic. They talk about 3 specific problems Joe had and how Business Mastery helped him overcome them.
First, they mention how Joe had to make that “mindset shift” from operator to business owner.
The people reading it may have an “ah-ha” moment as they read this. It can make them realize they need to make the same change.
Second, they talk about the pushback Joe got from his parents. They mention how his parents didn’t want to make the changes Joe learned from Business Mastery and were afraid Joe’s new plans would fail. This is awesome because readers who have a “mom and pop” business will likely face similar pushback if they tried to make changes. So addressing this problem and showing how Joe handled it thanks to Business Mastery helps the reader gain confidence that they can handle it through what they learn in the course.
And they do share how Joe solved this problem. A few sections down, they show how through Business Mastery Joe learned about the “core needs” of every human. And he learned that his parents had a core need around “safety” and that’s why they were so resistant to change.
So, understanding that, he was able to pitch his ideas in a way his parents could get on board with because he addressed their need for safety.
Third, they get into more tactical stuff. They share 3 ways Business Mastery helped Joe optimized his business.
They talk about how Business Mastery helped Joe realize he needed a virtual CFO — and how that helped them maximize revenue.
Then they share how he learned to move the company to a digital platform, which saved a ton of money. And how he learned to build a team that took a lot of the work and stress off Joe’s plate, so he was able to enjoy work again.
This is all awesome. The reader gets to learn about the types of changes they can expect to make from Business Mastery.
And sharing all this information makes the case study valuable in itself. The reader is actually learning strategies they can implement now to improve their business.
Teaching the reader helpful information like this through your case study keeps them engaged and builds trust. They start to think, “Man, if I’m getting all this from a free article imagine what I’d learn from the actual program…”
How to make this section even better
There isn’t much I would change here. The content is great. There are however a few things they could do to make everything more clear.
For example, they go into the problem of how Joe’s parents weren’t on board. Then they go on to show how Joe optimized his business. And then they talk about how he resolved the problem with his parents.
Writing it this way felt jumpy. It would have been cleaner to resolve the problem with the parent’s before moving on to show how he optimized is business.
Also, they have images showing the 3 ways Joe optimized his business. If you run your mouse over each image, you get text and quotes that explain what Joe did and how it helped.
I didn’t realize running your mouse over the image showed you this text at first. So I completely missed it the first time I read this.
To me, that’s a problem. Because that information is fantastic. So I don’t see the value in hiding it. If I was them, I would put the text on the page so people don’t miss it.
Section 6: Next steps
Just before they wrap up, they talk about how Joe had such great results with the Business Mastery program that he joined Tony’s high-end Platinum Partnership. They then share quotes about how much Joe loved that program and the people in it. And they include a photo of Joe and his wife on an adventure that was part of the Platinum Partnership program.
From there, they talk about the future for Joe’s business. And how he’s grown so much he’s looking to open another clinic. This is great because it’s the type of future the reader wants for themselves.
Finally, there’s a simple call to action to get people to apply to Business Mastery.
How to make this even better
This section is solid. What I would love to see though is what Joe’s day-to-day life is like now. How is his life better? What does it look and feel like? How has this success impacted him and his relationships?
You get a bit of that with the picture of him on the mountain. But showing one highlight moment doesn’t paint the picture of how his life transformed through Business Mastery.
They do include quotes elsewhere in the case study of how Joe now works less, enjoy work more, and has less stress. And that’s awesome. But it would be far more compelling if they painted a picture of what that looked and felt like. Doing that would help people clearly see how this program can transform their life. And the more clearly they can see and feel that transformation, the more they will want it for themselves.
Recap of this breakdown
This case study does a wonderful job teaching lessons that are immediately valuable to the reader.
And I love all the pictures they sprinkle throughout to support the story.
But the case study could close even more sales with a few changes. They include:
- Go deeper into Joe’s pain and struggle before joining
- Show what made him trust Business Mastery
- Show what made Business Mastery better than similar products he may have tried
- Make sure the lessons are super clear and easily understood
- Show what his day-to-day life is like now
- Share why this business growth so important to Joe
How to get done-for-you case studies
If you want to create case studies like the ones Tony has — but also include all the points I mentioned — check out my book Case studies That Close sales. It’s free on my homepage: MarketingWithBrian.com
That book lays out my full process for creating awesome case studies. Here’s an example of what they look like.
If you prefer these case studies are done-for-you, shoot me an email at [email protected] I’m usually booked out 3 months in advance but may be able to fit you in.