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A Concise Guide to Conduct Market Research and Data Collection

Online marketing is hugely based on the authentic data that is responsible for shaping the outreach strategies towards the audience. For this purpose, market research is an essential tool that brings out the required data. This collected data is the soul of all planning, production, and prediction regarding business; be it of any niche. 

Market research is a process whereby the information is collected regarding the customers’ intentions, preferences, and demands. The main goal of this research is to predict the success and acceptability of any product that is being introduced in the market. There is a saying in this regard; “whoever understands the customer best, wins’’. 

Another reason for conducting market research is to see the trends and methods of the competitors in the market. This helps the business owners to determine their goals and target a specific audience that has not yet been approached by the competitors. Hence, it tells about the emerging or declining trends and the spheres of influence of certain products or services.                                                                                                                                                             

The process of conducting market research

Market research comprises of many tools that help in the whole process of data collection. These tools include web searches, online questionnaires, or customer feedback forms. However, some basic steps need to be followed for an efficient market research strategy that could spur reliable and authentic results. Here are those steps:

  1. Analyzing the buyer persona

The buyer persona implies knowing who your customers are. In other words, some traits of the buyers need to be considered before introducing specific products to them. This helps in visualizing the audience and hence planning the communication strategies accordingly. For instance, age, gender, location, family size, average income, and possible challenges are part of the buyer persona.

Hence, knowing your audience well makes the planning and process easy along with eliminating the fear of loss in investments in your business.

  1. Selecting which buyers to survey

Before surveying data collection, one needs to consider a few things. Firstly; limit your targets to 10 persons for each category of product. This is important because too many mixed opinions also make things complicated.

Secondly; look for the ones who have already interacted with you. This makes it easier for the marketers to see that who is already interested and how will they respond.

Finally; opt for a mixed audience. This should be done to expand the chances of purchase since the same participants can also be interested in your competitor’s products. Hence, they should be given a different and unique to consider, or even drop your competitor’s offer.

Hence, audience selection is a very important aspect of data collection.

  1. Engaging the participants

For engaging your selected audience to participate in the survey, one needs to focus on a few things. Firstly; trace out the customers who have recently made a purchase. This is the easiest way to reach out to customers who seem to be aware of your services/products.

Secondly; reach out to the most active customers who have been in touch and have shown interest in new offers.

Thirdly; contacting these selected participants through social media and offering them products through innovative and attractive campaigns.

Fourthly; use indirect connections to reach out to the participants. This is usually done by verbally contacting people through their co-workers or colleagues.

Finally; incentivize your project. This makes the researcher think about how to keep an audience engaged for 30 to 40 minutes of your research process. One needs to have small rewards for them to invest their thought and time for your sake. For instance, a small and catchy Thank You note can be delivered, etc.

  1. Preparing your questions

Be it a focus group, an online survey, or a telephonic questioning session, one needs to be very specific and clear about the questions that are to be asked. Because ambiguous and confusing questions may make the participants lose their interest and they might avoid connecting with you again. 

Another aspect of an effective questionnaire is to make the use of open-ended questions because these are subjective and can be easily answered by a diverse population. People will feel flexible while answering the questions and according to their personal thinking and experiences, which vary from person to person.

  1. Summarizing your findings

Summarizing the findings is very important as it makes the whole procedure clear and ready to be presented to the audience. To make the summary more attractive and catchy, the researchers can incorporate the use of diagrams, charts, tables, info-graphics, quotes, or small clips. 

There are a few things that need to be focused in the summarizing process:

  • Background (goals and motives)
  • Participants 
  • Awareness (why you conducted the research)
  • Consideration (main themes you encountered)
  • Decision / Findings
  • Action Plan (how do you intent to now present the product(s) to the audience)

Keeping the above-mentioned aspects in mind, one can conclude that conducting market research can be a thorough and extensive process that requires skill and smart work. This research provides an insight into the ongoing trends, demands, and information about the competitors. Hence, engaging in market research increases the chances of long-term profits and enhanced business outreach. 

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