Use Opinion Research to Guide Marketing, Create News

The upcoming presidential election is a good reminder of the impact of public opinion. Both parties frequently use poll results to demonstrate the popularity of their candidates. Customer surveys can be just as useful for a company’s marketing and PR efforts. At a recent PRSA Silicon Valley Professional Development Workshop on “Surveys, Research and Measurement,” David Metz of Fairbank, Maslin, Maullin, Metz & Associates explained how opinion research can be used to test and determine a company’s:

  • Market Position (Where are we currently?)
  • Strategy or Message (How do we go further?)
  • Campaign Performance (Did we get there?)

 To generate new ideas, make real-time adjustments to an ongoing campaign, or gain deeper insight into your audience, Metz suggests using a combination of survey methods, i.e. focus groups, ad testing and field polls. To determine which method will produce the most relevant data, first decide on whether the survey needs to be formal or informal and the data qualitative or quantitative.

 Let’s assume you’re going with an informal, qualitative approach. To reduce survey costs, we can help you leverage existing resources such as incorporating publically available data, including published social media polls, integrating customer feedback from your CRM system or website, and more.

 Metz reminded us that opinion research is only as useful as your ability to act on the results. So once you’ve gathered and analyzed your data, it’s time to generate the news. Reporters love polls, and many publications cover newsworthy research. Survey results that can be tied to a trend are even more interesting to editors.

For more info about different ways to enhance your brand through opinion research, email Mar Junge.

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