How can you go wrong when you have a great idea? How can clever, witty or beautiful ads go unnoticed? Is there a way to predict the behavior of potential customers? How can you create marketing and branding materials that will bring in customers?
Ask. The first step in marketing a product or service or selling a brand identity is making sure it’s the right product, service or brand. You have to find out if you have it right. The way to do that is to ask. Survey.
Every single aspect of your business can be improved through the use of surveys. It’s true. Everything and anything can be surveyed.
Before investing in a new offering:
- Find out if anyone is interested.
- What makes them interested?
- How should it be packaged?
- What color should it be?
- How do you position it among its competition?
For existing products:
- How do customers feel they benefit from your product or service?
- What words do THEY USE to describe the product and its benefits?
- What do THEY think could be improved?
- How do THEY related the product to other similar products?
Business owners and marketing managers need to know their audience, who they are, what they want, what they think about the company or product or service, what “position” the company owns in people’s minds.
It’s easy to miss the mark on a guess or partial knowledge. Instead, what if learning about and understanding customers’ needs and expectations became the driving force behind development of products and services? What if the company brand, mission, image and advertising reflected the desires and opinions of its customers?
What looks like brilliance or even luck in achieving marketing goals, can simply be the fact that one company really understands its products and how they are actually perceived by customers and potential customers.
Savvy marketers have discovered that learning what’s in the prospect’s mind gives them answers, gives them the clever ideas that work. Answers come from the customer, from the marketplace, not from the marketing manager, or the boardroom or even the CEO.
There is nothing too trivial to survey. You can ask about products and services, about your staff, about packaging, about promotional materials, even about the emotional response to your company or product. Try it. You might be surprised by what you learn.
Never underestimate the willingness of people to give their opinion. Ask.
Benefits of using surveys:
- Know if what you are offering is wanted
- Find out if prospects understand the product or service
- Learn what benefits prospects want or expect
- Spotlight potential problems and new opportunities
- No guessing
- Understand the position your company holds in prospects’ minds.
Use the information you get to:
- Improve your product or service
- Develop new products and services
- Create targeted promotional materials that get results
Tips for surveying:
- Tally responses when you are no longer getting different answers.
- Never act on a single opinion. Act only on the majority response.
- Always act on the majority response.