Part of Apple’s success as company can easily be attributed to its recognition of its audience’s needs. The company has accomplished this by regularly inquiring about its users’ goals and actively listening to their requests. Steve Jobs, Apple’s co-founder, often described his job as trying to determine how users’ desires could be fulfilled stylishly, efficiently, and profitably.
This strategy can be applied to several parts of a business’ marketing plan. For example, many companies invest thousands of dollars into a redesigned website but will forget to inquire about the needs of the website’s visitors. The new site may look cool and modern to the business’ marketing department, and there may have been a beautiful, new branding video integrated into the project—but just because the business and its web developers are satisfied with its design doesn’t mean the site’s visitors will find value in it.
Businesses frequently don’t know their target audience as well as they think they do. Hours can be spent looking over website analytics, but what if visitors’ behavior is indicative of an issue that can’t be seen within this data? For example, what if Best Buy’s website didn’t show product reviews? While the company would still be able to analyze data from the site’s transactions, it would be impossible for the store to fully grasp “why” certain brands were selling over others.
So, how do you find out what your website’s visitors’ need? The answer is simple: Ask them!
Survey distribution is simple with today’s technology. Using a tool like SurveyMonkey, businesses can easily share a link to an online questionnaire with current and prospective clients. If lengthier, more comprehensive answers are called for, focus groups or interviews should be conducted. The key is making sure your audience is represented accurately. (i.e., If you own a sporting goods store that caters to hunters as well as general outdoor enthusiasts, make sure that both audiences are equally represented in your research’s data.)
Audience research will only take a month or two to complete, and the data will likely pay great dividends in the form of improved conversion and a more engaged audience.
If you have any questions or would like any assistance in compiling and/or analyzing customer and market research, give Baer Performance Marketing a call at 920-632-7648.