Blog | 3 Steps to Looking Like a Research Professional
It’s a new market landscape out there, and research is more critical than ever to understanding and reaching modern, sophisticated customers. Buyers have more choices than ever before, and market research is crucial for brands to know how they are performing and where they can improve.
The market research industry is therefore continually innovating to keep pace with this growing demand for more detailed customer insight – which makes it challenging for non-researchers to keep up. Customer needs and purchase behavior are increasingly complex and the research market changes rapidly.
But this doesn’t mean that you need to be a research professional to reap the rewards of market research.
Technology has changed the business landscape and market research along with it. You can get valuable customer insight that helps you identify where your company is performing best with customers, and where it could use some improvement – and you don’t have to be a highly trained market researcher to do it.
Try these three things to get faster, higher quality insight that you can use to make better business decisions.
1. Treat Respondents as Individuals
The people that you are aiming to understand and gain insight from are not nameless, faceless numbers. They are human beings. Yet many market research surveys appear robotic and impersonal.
To get the valuable opinions you need, start by treating your respondents as valuable human beings.
First, make sure you are sending your surveys to the right people. It’s all but impossible to really personalize surveys sent out on a mass scale, but you can ensure that the survey is relevant to the audience that receives it.
What you can personalize is the invitation. Use the respondent’s first name in the invitation – not "Dear sir or madam.” Write the invitation in a natural tone of voice, as if you were writing to a friend. Eliminate the jargon. Let them know how much you value their time – and if it’s appropriate, let them know what they will receive for their efforts.
This will help the respondent make a human connection to you and your company, and as a result, they will be more likely to actually fill out the survey.
2. Use the Right Tool
Technology has made it easier than ever to gain feedback from customers, research the market and keep an eye on competitors.
But not all market research tools are alike.
Look for a tool that includes:
_ Mobile-optimized online survey capabilities for quantitative feedback
_ Solutions for exploratory and qualitative market research
_ Online panel and online community capabilities
_ Robust reporting and analytics tools
_ The ability to aggregate data from multiple sources
These features will make your market research easier to conduct, net you more valuable insights, and make it easier for you to share those insights with key stakeholders.
3. Create Professional-Looking Surveys
When you are designing your surveys, keep the look and feel in mind. Good survey design matters more than most people think. The better the visual design, the more comfortable respondents will be, and the easier it will be for them to complete your survey.
Put your company logo on the survey so respondents immediately know they’re in the right place. Use your brand colors, fonts and imagery, too, for a more cohesive brand experience.
Align the design theme with the context of your survey, too. For example, if you’re seeking feedback about enterprise IT, a hot-pink color scheme would feel inappropriate!
Make sure your survey is mobile optimized, too. About 30% of surveys inside the U.S. and 50% outside it are completed on a mobile device. Yet many companies are still creating surveys that aren’t optimized for these devices. This creates a poor experience for respondents and decreases the effectiveness (and completion rates) of the surveys overall.
You don’t have to be a market research professional to get valuable insights from market research. Consider your audience, use the right tools and design your surveys well to get great feedback. Find out how Questback can help.