Creative and Effective ways to do Market Research

Image courtesy of Todd Chandler/Flickr.

The more you know about your market, the better you can be at targeting the right people. To many businesses, the thought of market research brings to mind in-depth surveys, months of analysis and statistical research.

Of course, these are very important parts of market research, but there are some more simple, creative ways you can learn about your market more quickly, so you can update your internet marketing plan now.

Use Existing Research

Look into census information, study results and statistics from research organisations for a glimpse at what your market is like. Use reliable, well-known sources for information so you know what you are finding is scientifically sound and accurate. These kinds of sources can help you save time and even cover some areas so you don’t have to do further research on your own.

Do a One-Question Poll

Long, in-depth surveys have their place but you can learn a lot from quick, one-question polls. Use these on your website, in your email newsletters or even emailed receipts. Ask just one question that is targeted toward a group of people, like site visitors or customers, and then track and analyse your results.

You can do this several times or use different polls at different locations to find out what your audience likes, how they feel, what they think of your customer service or even what social media sites they use the most.

Look at Social Media Analytics

Some social media sites provide insightful analytics that give you demographic information about the people you are reaching. Compile this information and use it to create a sketch of your average social media follower to help you enhance your social media marketing plan.

You can also use information like the content people are clicking on and sharing to find out a little about your audience’s interests, likes and needs.

Watch your Competition

Knowing who your competition is is very important, and can actually help you get your market’s attention. Visit your competitors’ locations, browse their website, look at their products and analyse their marketing campaigns.

Then, ask yourself why people in your market are attracted to these businesses and what you can offer that they can’t. This can give you an excellent starting point for digital marketing campaigns and business development efforts.

Get out and Talk to People

Personal, one-on-one feedback is invaluable. Of course, one person’s opinion doesn’t necessarily reflect your entire market, but talking to people is a great way to get to know the people you are trying to reach.

Talk to customers at your locations, make the rounds and visit with event attendees, hold focus groups and engage in conversations on social media. There are few better way to get to know your market than by talking to people.

Good market research starts with a question. Decide what you want to know about your market and then look for ways you can find the answer. These simple, creative options can help you do some quick market research no matter what kind of resources you have available.