Archive for the ‘Communications’ Category
Well, maybe not…
We have often relied on marketing research (primary or secondary), sales team feedback, customer satisfaction surveys, etc. to provide insights into those areas. The issue with most of those forms of feedback is that they tend to provide the answers we want to hear or find necessary to meet our internal business goals (either as an organization or a professional).
Audience research, on the other hand, uncovers specifically how markets use products and services, speak about them, form communities, etc. It’s like watching a pride of lions in their natural habitat. Regardless if it’s a B2B or B2C market, when we take the time to watch people in their natural – or comfortable – habitat, we will see their true behavior and opinions surface. If you haven’t done audience research, it can be quite eye-opening. But more importantly, it can’t be fabricated. As an organization it’s your choice to ignore it (at your peril, potentially) or to embrace what’s really going on in the market.
So how can audience research help traditional marketing efforts?
Even More Goodness! Related Posts:
This weekend I was reading an article in the Fall Harvard Business Review OnPoint magazine (How to Get Your Message Across edition) called “Five Ways to Sharpen Your Communication Skills” by John Baldoni. The article was interesting, but what was more interesting was the comment they selected to share in the Reader Comment section after the article.
John shares these five tips:
- Know the fundamentals (Understand the written and spoken word.)
- Think clearly about what you will say (Don’t use PowerPoint as short-hand for thinking)
- Prepare for meetings (Take the time to think about what to say before you say it.)
- Engage in discussion (Debate. Hear all viewpoints. Don’t engage in group think.)
- Listen to others (Discussion is meaningless if no one is listening. “Measure what you treasure.”)
Sounds like everything we learned in kindergarten, right? Still many marketing, public relations and communications pros struggle with these basic elements when it comes to communicating with customers, stakeholders and other employees.