It’s tempting to think that by initiating a well-structured research project you’ll be able to answer your critical business questions in one neat, clean package. To be sure, having a well-structured approach with clear goals and alignment across the team is essential to achieving actionable insights. But it shouldn’t start and stop with a single initiative. Maximizing the value of your research, oddly enough, often means going beyond what the research is telling you.
For instance, our broad experience with product development and pricing research has taught us that extracting the most impact from this work relies on us looking at information and data points that complement, refine, and inform the results we’re seeing. More specifically, we’ve worked with clients in the appliance category to help optimize feature and pricing structures for products ranging from blenders to vacuums to washing machines. What’s been most effective with these initiatives are those where we link various other pieces of data into our research results.
In the blender category, we’ve worked on a number of efforts to guide pricing strategies, identify features that will drive demand, and construct new product configurations to enhance a product line. In all of these cases we’ve used a choice-based approach to capture insights from consumers. These results are very powerful, and, on their own, yield a great deal of valuable insight to guide our clients’ decisions.
However, when we combine additional data with our research analysis, we take these results to a new level. By bringing in such details as product penetration in the market, target sizing, cost of goods sold, profit margins, historic sales performance, distribution, we are able to build an analysis that more accurately predicts what will happen when our client takes action. And these results have been validated by what our client has seen play out in the market.
While this is one example, there are numerous others where referencing information beyond the immediate research initiative leads to deeper, more powerful insights. There are numerous ways to go beyond the research and maximize your value: Tying marketing allocations into customer journey analysis, leveraging market share data to better assess size of the prize for segmentation, or referencing census data to guide market sizing research, for instance.
It’s essential to push yourself and your team to look beyond the research results if you’re to truly achieve the deepest insights possible and create the strongest action plans.”
Here are five key ways to maximize your research with additional data:
- Marketing trends information will bring in external data about the marketplace from syndicated sources and help add perspective and context to what you’ll learn in your research
- Market share data is information about current performance that can enhance your understanding of what you’ll learn when conducting new product or pricing research
- Social listening data is the type of soft, unstructured information that can be integrated to help illuminate things you might learn in a quantitative piece of research
- Internal database metrics can be an opportunity to tie in data that you own about your customers in order to broaden your understanding of what is being captured in the research
- Passive data captured from mobile devices collects this type of information from a set of consumers can you put yourself in a better position to determine the best course of action coming from the research
The list can continue from here, but the point is that it’s essential to push yourself and your team to look beyond the research results if you’re to truly achieve the deepest insights possible and create the strongest action plans. Want to discuss further ideas on how to enhance your learning in this manner?