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Kim Kardashian’s Market Research Mistake

4 min read
Market Research
Kim Kardashian’s Market Research Mistake

Queen of pop culture she may be, but Kim Kardashian’s one-sided, Me-Myselfie-and-I-focused conversation means she will never be a market research star.

Whatever you think of her brand, Kim Kardashian is an excellent self-marketer. The Kardashian product is now an ubiquitous part of our culture. To her over 50 million followers on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook she is the perfect pop icon for the millennial age. Her TV show is in its tenth season and shows no real sign of waning. Her products from games to clothes are all over the shop.

And yet the Kardashian brand, as sales of Kim’s selfie book suggest, isn’t all that great at market research.

Why? Because Kim doesn’t base her marketing model on listening to people.

Broadcasting Versus Listening

Kim is the perfect example of a “broadcast” marketer. She tweets all day about what she’s wearing, how she’s feeling, what she’s thinking… and rarely stops and asks her audience what’s going on with them.

Even her fan outreach is often self-centered. Up until mid-2014, she called out her favorite Tumblr of the week on her blog every Tuesday, calling it “Tumblr Tuesday.” But this was no attempt to connect with fans – rather, she was giving credit to fans who took the time to build Kardashian-focused Tumblr sites.

Hers is a one-sided, “me, me, me” conversation.

If you’re broadcasting 100% of the time, you’re not listening.

If you’re not listening, you’re not learning.

To really understand your market, to get truly valuable, actionable insights, you need to get feedback from your market.

What Kim Kardashian is Doing RIGHT

All of that said, Kim is doing some things right: She’s paying attention to her brand on social media. This is something many companies are not doing effectively.

Whether you’re broadcasting or asking for feedback on social media, you need to be paying attention to the response.

  • Respond in a timely fashion
  • Take action on feedback – publicly
  • Prioritize customer service queries
  • Respond (respectfully, helpfully, positively) even to the negative posts

But don’t just wait for your audience to reach out to you on social media. Start conversations yourself, too. Reach out to individuals in your audience, especially when you can help them solve a problem – almost half of them will let others know about the positive experience.

In addition to her TV shows, Kim has a clothing line, cosmetics, perfume, workout videos, mobile games and books.

So how does Kim plan these launches successfully? By involving her Twitter following of five million to feedback on her choices. In her own words Kim describes Twitter as “like the best focus group.”

How well do you understand your market?

Great customer service, getting your whole organization working toward the same goal, creating a forward-looking strategy, influencing the positive perception and not just the notoriety of your brand – all of these things start with understanding your market.

So don’t just blast your social media followers with company-focused posts. Ask them questions. Use surveys to gather feedback. Connect with your market where they are.

You can improve the profitability of your core operations by investing in strategies you know will work because you’ve done the market research.

5 ways to get more from market research

If we could tell you just five things to remember when you improve ROI on your market research, it would be these:

  • #1 Clarify your business objectives 

Fully understand what decisions or changes you want to be able to make to your business as a result of your market research at the project briefing stage.

  • #2 Set your budget

Market Online research is cost effective and faster than traditional methods, but you should decide in advance how much you are willing to spend.

  • #3 Target the right people to have a conversation with your brand

Set your target market, audience and profile and _be very clear about audiences or segments you want to carry out research with – and for what purpose. This will help researchers identify the correct sample mix, size and methodology.

  • #4 Send short surveys

Surveys are a key part of market research._Think about how many questions you would be happy to answer in a survey yourself. Long questionnaires can lead to increased drop-out rates and poor data quality. Send mobile-first, real-time surveys for best results.

  • #5 Analyze and Implement like a pro 

_Plan how you will do analyzing and reporting and transform insights into ROI. Analysis techniques vary and effectiveness depends on the kind of data you collect, and the type of measurements you use. Because they are dependent on the data collection, decide what analysis methods you will use at the start of your project. And finally, plan your reporting technique: your goal is to give decision makers both the technical and summary report of market research that will ensure the best decisions and best actions are implemented for your brand.


Broadcast marketing is working for Kim Kardashian on many levels but listening to customers is how you learn to know and understand them. When you really do that, your product or service sells itself.

Does your business broadcast at or listen to customers? Meet us over on over on LinkedIn or Twitter to continue the conversation 🙂 



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