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The Complete Guide to Marketing Research: Tools, Tips and Best Practices

Savannah Trotter • 10 Jan 2024

In marketing, success isn't just about creating memorable campaigns or crafting witty taglines. In reality, the truth is much less sexy. It’s about deeply understanding the audience you’re talking to. 

As a marketer, your audience is (or should be) your north star. The constant force that guides your efforts. And in our digital era of fleeting attention spans and viral micro-trends, the ability to grasp your audience's intricate web of wants, needs, and preferences can feel like a herculean task. 

That’s where marketing research comes in. 

Marketing research isn't just a tool; it's the key that unlocks the door to the minds and hearts of those you aim to captivate.

Today, we'll explore the techniques and tools that transform vague notions into concrete insights, allowing marketers to speak directly to the soul of their audience. It's time to decode the enigma, demystify the process, and embrace the profound impact that market research can have on your ability to truly resonate with those who matter most. 

 

What is Marketing Research

Marketing research is simply market research applied to your marketing. It is a technique used to collect audience feedback that can later be used to inform your marketing, advertising, and messaging strategy. 

The purpose of conducting marketing research is to up your marketing engagement and ROI by better understanding your audience. 

 

How Can I Use Marketing Research? 

 

Create Accurate Personas

If you want to deliver marketing campaigns that actually catch people’s attention and garner meaningful engagement, you’ll need to deeply understand your audience. Creating robust buyer personas based on data straight from your target market is the best way to start! 

Using market segmentation tools (like those found on SightX), you can use data about your audience’s preferences, sentiments, behaviors, and more to better understand how they make their decisions, where they shop, and what they are looking for in a product. 

 

Optimize Your Ads

Ad testing is one of the most popular use cases in marketing research, and for good reason! It allows you to pre-screen your ads- entire ads or just sections like copy or graphics- with your target audience before you launch your campaign. 

Not only does this help you publish more engaging ads, but it also ups your advertising ROI. 

 

Develop Better Brand & Product Messaging

While your organization may use certain words and  phrases to discuss your brand or products, that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s the same language used by your audience. By testing your messaging, you can break out of your internal echo chamber and evaluate the natural language that surrounds your industry, brand, and products.

 

Build a Winning Content Strategy 

The goal of any good content strategy is to create pieces that entice and engage your target audience. Sure, you can plan your content strategy around popular industry topics and themes covered by your competitors. But, if you’re doing what everyone else is doing, it will be pretty difficult to stand out. 

So, what’s the best way to give your readers exactly what they want? By asking them! 

You can use marketing research to better understand the types of content your audience is looking for, the formats they prefer, the topics that interest them, and the distribution channels that will reach them. 

 

What are the Benefits of Using Marketing Research? 

 

Improve Your ROI

It’s no secret that marketing and advertising can be a costly endeavor. Market research gives you the opportunity to screen your ideas, ad concepts, messages, or imagery with your target market to mitigate your risks before launching.

 

Understand Your Market Segments

Discover what messaging and creative resonates best with each of your target market segments for higher levels of engagement. 

 

Gain a Competitive Advantage

Use consumer insights to create marketing assets that help you stand out from the crowd. 

 

Iterate at Speed

Agile market research empowers you to make data-driven decisions in real time, leading to more efficient business outcomes across your marketing efforts.

 

Tools for Marketing Research

 

Concept Testing 

Get direct feedback from your audience on your ad concepts to perfect your design and hone in on a messaging strategy. Eliminate poor-quality ideas and move forward with those that engage your audience to launch your campaigns with confidence. 

 

Heat Mapping

Test which types of advertisements and messaging garner the most positive or frequent interactions, and which drive users to engage with your Call-to-Action. Visualized feedback from your audience makes it simple to understand what consumers like or dislike, what catches their eye, and (most importantly) why

 

Automated Conjoint Analysis

Use data on consumer preferences to optimize your product and brand messaging. Better understand what your audience values most about your brand, product, or service to create powerful messaging and advertisements. 

 

Text Highlighter

Share your text, select the metrics that matter most to you, and let respondents leave detailed feedback on ways to perfect your copy. 

 

Marketing Research with SightX

The SightX platform is the only tool you'll ever need for market research: a single, unified solution for consumer engagement, data collection, advanced analysis, and reporting. While powerful enough for insights teams at Fortune 500 companies, the user-friendly interface makes it simple for anyone to start, optimize, and scale their research. 

And with our new Generative AI consultant, Ada, you can harness the power of OpenAI’s GPT to transform your marketing research and insights. Collaborating with Ada is like having an expert researcher, brilliant statistician, and ace marketer on your team, helping you ask the right questions, choose the best experiments, pick out key insights, and seamlessly apply them to your business. 

If you're ready to dive in click the button below to get started for free!

 

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Savannah Trotter

Savannah Trotter

Savannah is the Marketing Manager at SightX. She is our in-house expert for all things marketing and advertising.

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