Market research on what makes your customers tick should be at the heart of any marketing activity. If carried out early on, before a campaign starts or strategy is developed it will give you valuable insight into what your customers want from your product or service. Formally carried out market research can cost a significant amount of money, so how do you get the info without blowing the budget?
Invite your customers to an event, this may be drinks, lunch or dinner. This acts like an informal focus group – ask them about your product or service, encourage them to give their opinions and advice. You may want to use this opportunity to introduce a new product or service to get their reactions and comments. By making this group of customers feel exclusively selected and valued, they will be happy to give their opinions.
MARKET RESEARCH SURVEYS
Market research surveys can work really well and are cost effective too but there are a few simple things you might want to consider before you inundate your customers with survey after survey! Keep the questions simple and short; keep the survey length short – a max of 5 questions; offer an incentive to answer ie a voucher, and only send them a maximum of twice each year. Once you have the responses back, make time to review them, respond to any negative comments immediately and act on them – don’t just let them gather dust!
Your database is a goldmine of information, so make sure you use it! By looking through your customer information you will be able to pick up trends that you may have previously missed. For example, do the majority of your customers fall into a certain age range? Are they employed in specific professions? Do they have particular hobbies? How did they hear about your business? Whatever qualities your customers have; this will give you a great insight into how to reach more of the same customer type.