At its core, leveraging consumer insights allows your company to see into the hearts and minds of current and prospective customers. Using consumer insights allows you to get a pulse on your target audience, and if used correctly, these insights can help smooth the customer experience, increase sales, and even pave the way to new business opportunities.
Consumer insights are as important to businesses and entrepreneurs as talent and technology. Follow us as we take you on a journey through the world of consumer insights.
What are consumer insights?
Some businesses plod daily, losing sight of what their targeted market wants and needs. If you want to grasp your target market and improve customer experience, what better way than gather insights from your customers (either directly or indirectly)?
According to Trustpilot, a customer review channel, consumer insights help businesses better understand how their target audience thinks and feels. The goal is to improve how a company communicates with its customers, which can result in desired changes in customer behavior and, eventually, increased revenue.
Analytics, reviews, surveys, social media monitoring, and simple one-on-one conversations are top tools for gaining consumer insights. Collecting and analyzing this type of data can help your business grow.
Remember that market research and consumer insights are not the same. Trustpilot states that market research provides the “what,” while consumer insights provide the “why.”
In other words, market research provides information about your market and customer base. To gather consumer insights, you must go beyond traditional consumer research. Consumer insights provide the same data and recommendations to help your company acquire and retain customers, improve the customer experience, and generate more revenue.
With a better understanding of consumer insights, your company can:
- Increase customer retention and attract new customers.
- Enjoy more successful product or service launches.
- Permit predictive analysis, which aids in refining product and service offerings and may even lead to new ones.
PwC, a professional services firm, makes yet another case for consumer insights as critical to improving the customer experience. According to PwC, businesses that invest in and provide superior customer experiences can raise the prices of their products and services by up to 16%.
Conducting consumer insight research begins with a list of touchpoints
There is no correct or incorrect way to conduct consumer insight research. A specific research method that works for one business may not work for another. There are numerous ways to gather consumer insights, just as there are numerous ways to consume news.
Before you begin, you should evaluate your customer touchpoints: How do current and prospective customers interact with your company?
Those touchpoints may be the best places for your company to gain customer insights. The channels could include a digital advertisement, your website, online reviews, or your customer service team.
Don’t forget that these touchpoints occur before, during, and after the purchase. A before-purchase touchpoint, for example, could be word of mouth, a during-purchase touchpoint could be your sales team, and an after-purchase touchpoint could be a transactional email.
Once you’ve identified your customer touchpoints, it’s time to devise a strategy for gathering customer insights. The strategy should include the following:
- Determining the scope and size of your customer insights program.
- Providing adequate financial and human resources
- Determining which insight tools you will employ.
Customer data source types
So, what are your options for collecting customer data to help you and your marketing team gain insights?
Here are six illustrations:
- Focus groups
- One-on-one interviews
- Customary advisory panels
- Ethnography, a type of in-depth market research that provides a comprehensive look at how your customers go about their daily lives.
- Psychography, a branch of psychology that studies people’s values, desires, goals, interests, and lifestyle choices.
With the right research, you’ll be able to gain insight into your target customers’ habits and purchasing behavior.
How do you put consumer insight tools to use?
Once you’ve chosen the right consumer insight tools, ensure they all work together. A concerted effort will yield far superior results.
When putting this effort together, consider the following four questions:
- Do your customers know about your company? To raise awareness, you may need to inculcate some word-of-mouth approach or generate some buzz through PR.
- Are your products or services being considered by customers? Marketing your offerings via social media ads, increasing your online review presence, and improving your blog content may be in order.
- Are customers prepared to purchase? Check that your website and e-commerce platform are in good working order. When customers visit a store or office, take a look around to see where you can improve the customer experience.
- Is retention your top priority? Online forums, feedback surveys, FAQs, and “knowledge base” articles may be of assistance in this regard.
Collecting customer insights to retain existing customers, attract new customers, and enhance the overall experience is not a one-time event. It should be a continuous project that employs a variety of methods — methods that do not strain your resources. Along the way, you should evaluate the effectiveness of your efforts regularly. Based on that assessment, make changes to improve data collection and keep up with new technology.
Contact our team for a personalized approach to leverage consumer insights for your business today.