BDN believes in research both for the industry and for our clients. And you should, too.
Please don’t discount research because you think you understand your audience. No one in our field can afford to base marketing decisions and investments on guesswork or assumptions about audience definition, needs and preferences. You have to know.
This Forbes article, “Why Knowing Your Audience is the Key to Success,” advises that “a solid market research campaign plays an important role in a successful marketing initiative by giving you the information you need to focus in on your audience and content.” And that’s really the point — gathering the right information to make your marketing more effective.
However, research is a complex topic that should not be approached lightly. If you’re thinking about conducting research of your own, it’s important to ask the right questions. Whether you are doing one-on-one interviews, focus groups, or an online written survey, here are 7 types of questions you’ll want to include in your research initiative.
- Who, specifically, are the decision makers for purchasing your products/services? Procurement people? Pilots? Maintenance personnel? Others? Prioritize them, separating by market segment if needed.
- What role do they play in purchasing decisions? Are they influencers? Sole decision-makers? Part of a committee or team?
- How do your targets make decisions? What factors are most important to them? Do they value price above all else? Strive to understand everything you can about their decision-making process and tailor your marketing to match.
- What are the demographics of your audience? Consider asking about gender, age, and geographic location, for example. Cross-tabulating this information with other findings can provide valuable insight.
- What does the audience know or believe about your company and products versus competitive offerings? Are they aware of your business and product line? Do they have a positive impression? Understanding awareness and perceptions will fundamentally shape your campaign strategy and tactics.
- What are the pain points, problems and challenges they face? For example, if they are challenged by unreliable products — and if reliability drives their decision-making — you have gained a valuable leverage point that can set you apart from the competition. Also, consider including an option for respondents to write in comments. These can be incredibly helpful.
- Where and how do they learn about products and services that may be of interest to them? From Google to advertising, print collateral to dealers, learning what channels are most influential can guide how and where you invest limited marketing budgets.
Want to learn more? Don’t miss this in-depth piece from B2B International.
And watch this space next week, when we begin presenting original research detailing how purchasing decisions are made within the general and business aviation markets.