Tips for making the move from cold calling to social media for market research

A recent conversation with someone got me thinking about social media and how it can be used for market research purposes. He had endured the awful experience of starting a job which turned out to be a market research role, phoning people at home and asking them questions from a survey. It surprised me that companies are still using the old fashioned method of ripping pages out the phone book and cold calling customers. In this day and age, does anyone really use the phone that much for calls any more and more importantly, do most of us even have a landline? Is there anyone who doesn’t really just find these calls a nuisance? Surely social media is a much more current and relevant way of conducting research and as a business, it would make more sense to ask new starts to use this method, rather than cold calling. They would be much more likely to be interested in it, engaged in the job and it would save going through the process of constantly hiring new people, without much results! If your business is one which conducts market research, these tips might help you move away from the traditional to the more current methods and get better results in the process.

Follow Target Market

With any surveys, there is usually a particular niche you are looking for; i.e. specific interests and rather than wasting the time trying to find the right people through hundreds of phone calls, you can utilise social media by searching for specific interests, location etc. You can use the advanced search on Twitter to bring up the specifics and then only follow these people who will be useful for the purpose of your market research.

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Online Survey

An online survey is far more appealing than one which is taken over the phone. People can do it at their own leisure and will be much more willing to get involved. If you use your target market to approach with the survey, you are far more likely to get interest, rather than approaching those who have no relevance, which will inevitably happen through random phone calls! Add images to your surveys to make them seem a little more interesting, even if the content is a bit boring.

Offer Incentives

Another appeal of using social media for market research is that you can offer incentives to encourage interest. For example, the 100th person to complete the survey will get a prize and make sure the prize is one which will be of interest; it doesn’t need to be expensive. Many people will me more willing to get involved and it will be certain to drive extra interest to your market research. This is something you can’t do by conducting research over phone calls.

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Use Trends

Facebook and Twitter both having the facility for finding out what people are talking about and the current trends of topics at the moment. You can analyse this data for the purpose of market research.

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