The whole reason for conducting market research is to find out what your prospects are thinking, feeling and needing – – and then use that data to meet their desires and needs. The questions you ask and the format you use will impact the usability and quality of the data you receive. From in-person offline surveys to on-site kiosks and online surveys, you can gain valuable insight into your customer’s feelings and motivations, if you ask the right questions.
How can you be sure you are asking the right questions? Including these queries as a baseline is a great place to start.
Who are you, really?
Those somewhat boring but needed questions about demographics helps pinpoint a buyer persona and gives you a basic understanding of what they want and need. From gender to age, income level and geographic location, understanding where your prospect is coming from, how they spend their time and who they are at a basic level ensures you are ready to meet their needs and communicate with them the right way.
What troubles you?
What is your target prospect struggling with or feeling frustrated about? Asking this question in a global way clues you into some of their needs. Are they worried about paying the bills or trying to decide how to get time off from work for that vacation? Do they have aging parents, small kids or are they coping with health problems? Gaining an understanding of your prospects frustrations and struggle can help you come up with ways to approach them that will truly resonate.
What do you value?
A customer makes a decision to buy for a variety of reasons. Are they buying your product because it is inexpensive because it is a quality item or because of the service you offer? If you are very close to your competitors in terms of performance and price point, then learning what qualities matter to your prospects ensures you have a clear value proposition and that you are reaching out in the right way.
What would you like to see next?
You may be the expert on your product, but the end user who purchases it uses it and interacts with it each day has come valuable insight to share – if you ask. Does your gadget need a waterproof cover – could your product line use some additional print patterns, or does your umbrella need a strap to keep it closed? You won’t know unless you ask. A single customer with an idea or suggestion is just stating a personal preference, but when the same answer pops up again and again in your online surveys, you’ll need to pay attention to the data.
What do you dislike about our product or service?
This question may seem like it is inviting complaints, but those minor annoyances could be preventing you from reaching more customers. Gathering data about what your customers don’t like about your brand gives you valuable insight into how well you are doing – from your customer service efforts to your fulfillment and even shipping times. Gathering and analyzing this data regularly allows you to spot patterns and ensure that you are offering an optimal experience for your target buyers.
Also published on Medium.