How to Better Know Your Customers with Marketing Research - Baltimore Post-ExaminerBaltimore Post-Examiner

How to Better Know Your Customers with Marketing Research

Researching your customers can save you from losing time and effort on marketing that doesn’t work. Without the right information, you may spend time and money on strategies that bring you no returns. If your marketing fails, you may feel discouraged. Worse still, your business may not make enough sales.

On the other hand, when you know exactly what your customers want, you can create marketing that instantly grabs their attention. You will also find it much easier to sell your products and services. However, it all starts with understanding how to know your customer better than your competition. Here are four ways you can use to get started with your customer research.

Survey your customers

Surveys are an easy way to find out what your customers want. You can ask them questions that will show you exactly what you can do to serve them better. You can also find out what they wish was available to them. Armed with this info, you can create an offer that fits exactly what they’re looking for.

When creating your survey questions, give your customers a chance to describe their problems. You want to get your customers’ perspective in their own words. The more they share with you, the easier it will be for you to understand how to serve them.

Read product reviews

Researching product reviews can open your eyes to how your customers view products similar to yours. You can then adjust your offering based on your findings. Specifically, you can gain insights into what your customers are looking for when buying from you. You will also have a deeper understanding of what they don’t like about your industry.

Pay special attention to customers who are not happy with the products. This will show you what’s missing in the marketplace. You can then use this information to fill the market gap.

Search through online discussion forums

Online discussion forums are great for discovering exactly what your customers think. These platforms create an environment where customers feel comfortable sharing their views and opinions. They also seek out recommendations from their peers. Searching through discussions can be a rich source of marketing information.

Treat Customers Like People Rather Than Numbers

Consumer expectations are at an all-time high as both customers and businesses have incredible access to information. A recent report from Salesforce emphasized the importance of treating customers like people rather than numbers:

“It’s probably not a surprise that 84% of customers now say that being treated like a person, not a number, is very important to winning their business, while 57% have stopped buying from a company simply because a competitor gave them a better experience.”

Focus on the pains your customers are trying to solve. You can then figure out how to communicate ways that your products can help deal with these problems.  After all, people buy products to make their lives better.

To get the best results, take part in the discussions yourself. Make up your mind to make a meaningful contribution. This strategy will give you a better feel for how your market thinks. More importantly, you will build up your authority and attract new customers to your business.

The more you know about your customers, the better your marketing message will be. Remember, customers prefer to buy when they feel understood. As Mathew Sweezey recently wrote for Forbes, customers engage with content “to alleviate their anxiety, to learn something new or because they are still unclear on their needs.” Your research will also give you more confidence that your marketing will work.

Of course, this requires some upfront time investment. This often discourages people from putting in the necessary effort. Yet, your research can give you an instant advantage over your competition.

Try to spend some time on research every day. This will allow you to build up momentum. Keep adjusting your marketing based on what you discover. Don’t worry if your results seem small in the beginning. As long as you stick with it, you will eventually come across information that can multiply your profits.


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