Marketing Research Kitchener & Waterloo


In working for my clients I have conducted marketing research in Kitchener & Waterloo. In this blog article I discuss how I use research to help in my efforts to generate new customers.

In the customer surveys I complete for my customers I include various questions to get a better understanding of their current customer base and also try and determine what might be effective ways to connect with prospective new customers.

What I have experienced so far to be the most valuable information from these surveys is:

1. What current customers view as the companies strengths or selling features.

2. Who it is that makes the final purchase decision

3. Where current customers go to seek information on suppliers in the industry

4. What keywords current customers would use to search for suppliers in the industry if they were to use a search engine to find information

5. How the current customers score their satisfaction level with the company

 

I have found these pieces of information the most important for the following reasons.

 

1. What current customers view as the companies strengths or selling features.

By gathering this information it makes sure you know what are the key benefits your company provides to customers so that you can make these the focus of your marketing communications. The only additional thing to keep in mind is to make sure customers and prospective customers actually value these benefits. That is why I always have a question that has customers rank the importance of benefits to a buying decision. With this information I then focus on communicating in the clients marketing initiatives the benefits the clients scores high on and that have high influence on the buying decision.

 

2. Who it is that makes the final purchase decision

This information helps tremendously as it will let you know who you need to be communicating with and how to connect with them. The type of information you would look to collect here is position title, age, sex and interests. If you know the majority of people who make the final buying decision are men 40-55 you will want to use a different marketing approach then if the person who makes the final decision is mostly women 25-35.

 

3. Where current customers who go to seek information on suppliers in the industry

Having this information will help you select what marketing mediums to utilize in your campaign to generate new customers. If prospects say they look for information on google and never check the yellow pages, then you will want to make sure you are advertising with google adwords and conducting ongoing SEO to your website, while not investing in a yellow page listing.

 

4. What keywords current customers would use to search for suppliers in the industry if they were to use a search engine to find information

Because people use the internet so much now and use it basically for everything having what keywords real people would use to find information on the products or services you provide is critical. You may be able to come up with your own keyword list of what you "think" people us to search for your products or services but everyone thinks differently. So what you think may not be anything like the average person would. You can really only find out by sampling a large group of people. I think you would be suprised how different the keywords can be come one person to another. In one of the surveys I conducted we found that 75% of keywords were unique. That means 75% of the keywords people said they would use to find a particular product or service, no one else said that same keyword (To read more about these states read my article Keyword Phrase Research). Having a keyword list from a large sample of real people is invaluable.

 

5. How the current customers score their satisfaction level with the company

Having this information ensures the product and service you offer provides good value. We all think that our customers are always happy with our service. You never hear or any business owner saying his customers are not happy with the companies services. Yet there are always dissatisfied customers. By including questions around customer satisfaction it ensures you have a process in place to keep your current customers before trying to attract new ones. If your current customers rate their satisfaction low, it will probably be more beneficial to focus on making your current customers satisfied then trying to attract new customers.

 

For all of the above information I use current customers as the respondents because they are easy, inexpensive to contact and have real experience with my clients products or services. If you have an efficient way to contact prospects and current customers, survey both would be the optimal approach. The problem is I doubt you will get many prospects to be willing to fill out a survey. The above approach does assume that current customers would respond the same as potential customers. I think this is a safe assumption as long as your current customers are in the same market and segment you are trying to generate new customers in. Here is another good article on marketing research tips.

So if you are looking to complete a customer survey anytime soon I would highly recommend including questions that related to the above 5 questions. If you do, I think you will find you get some valuable information that will help you in your new customer prospecting efforts.

I help various B2B small businesses in Waterloo and Kitchener, Ontario, Canada generate new customers. If you are interested in keeping up to date on issues related to generating new customers for B2B small businesses subscribe by email to this blog.

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Profitworks

Profitworks Small Business Services Inc. a company that provides search engine optimzation and website conversion optimization services which increase the amount of sales generated from a website. Profitworks is a company built on the values of integrity, hard work, doing things better than they have ever been done before and the utmost commitment to our customers. The focus of our all of our services is to provide a positive return on investment to our customers.

 

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