7 ways to use social media pertaining to market research

As marketers, it’s the job to know our focus on audience’s needs and choices. It’s why we carry out market research every year to better determine what our customers want plus uncover new business opportunities.

But sometimes market research alone isn’t enough, specially when consumer preferences can change overnight. While focus groups are helpful to reference at the start of recent product or campaign development, they’re less useful for gathering customer feedback once said post-launch. And annual surveys reveal little about what current occasions or trending topics are most relevant among consumers right this moment. To stay on top of the latest developments and maintain a more accurate heartbeat on your audience, you need to include social media market research into your strategy.

What is social media marketing market research?

Social media market research is the practice associated with gathering historical and real-time data from social media channels to better understand your brand’s target market. While it’s possible to conduct market research natively on social platforms, tools like Sprout Social enable you to collect and analyze info from all of your brand’s interpersonal accounts in one centralized system.

Screenshot of the Sprout Listening platform featuring an example of the competitor view

Social media market research is also:

  • Affordable. Social media is much cheaper than surveys or focus groups, which could cost thousands of dollars depending on the size and complexity of your study panel.
  • Quick. Whilst traditional market research methods can take time, social media is always upgrading in real-time and you can pull existing social data intended for immediate results.
  • Comprehensive. With over 3. 6 billion social users in 2020 , there’s no shortage of data on social media and equipment like social listening ensure it is easy to analyze conversations plus trends around your entire market, not just your brand.

7 researching the market insights you can get from social media

According to the latest Sprout Social Index™ , there are 7 unique consumer insights online marketers can gather from their brand’s social platforms to apply toward their strategies. Below, we will break down all seven social media market research examples and how to find this information on your brand’s social channels.

Pink and blue chart showing a ranking of how social data informs marketers' understanding of their customers

1 . See how clients use your products or services

Customers aren’t shy about discussing how they use certain companies will rush to share their own thoughts on social media. Omsom, a company that creates pantry cutting corners for specific Asian meals, is regularly tagged within consumer reviews and pictures of people’s home prepared meals. In one Tweet , a customer shares how they use Omsom to jazz up their leftovers while another attributes an effective dinner to the Asian kitchen shortcut.

How to find this information: When customers want you to know something, they will not hesitate to tag or even mention your brand. Search for your brand and the title of your product on interpersonal platforms like Twitter or even Instagram to learn how customers actually use your goods and services. Reddit is another treasure trove filled with conversations and communities relevant to your brand or products. And with a tool like Sprout Social, you can easily monitor these branded keywords and phrases to stay up-to-date with what customers have to say.

2 . Learn exactly what customers dislike about your brand

One guarantee of any kind of social platform is you can always find someone who disfavors something about your brand name, product or service. In the example over, an individual shares a specific feature that forces viewers to skip the end credits of a film or TV show. Even though they’re tough to digest, the negative comments can actually help brands identify areas for improvement to strengthen their particular offerings.

How to find this information: Truth be told, you probably don’t have to search too hard to find what people dislike about your brand or your products. Above searching for branded keywords and phrases, think about checking your social mailbox for direct messages that contain constructive criticism. This is also a great opportunity for social teams to solicit feedback through sales or customer service groups who hear directly from clients about their likes and dislikes.

3. Discover what clients like about your brand

As soon as people are to point out what they dislike about a brand, they’re just like quick to heap praise on the businesses they like. Travelers, for example , may have a popular airline and are eager to reveal what makes them a frequent flier of one airline over another. For brands, this is also an opportunity to learn more about exactly what attracts customers to your competitors. If you notice customers can’t stop praising the competition’s remarkable customer service on social, consider reevaluating your own service attempts to find potential opportunities pertaining to improvement.

How to find this information: There are several ways you can find beneficial feedback about your brand name. You can search for branded key terms organically on social; you can also peruse the reviews section on platforms like Facebook, TripAdvisor and Google. In addition to monitoring the conversation close to your brand, you should also maintain a pulse on what people are saying about your competitors. With Sprout’s Listening tool , you can easily setup a competitive analysis report to better track and realize consumers’ attitudes toward competition.

Screenshot of Sprout's Listening tool, featuring the competitive analysis view

4. Gain insight into what customers expect from your brand in the future

Consumers frequently take to social to share what they want to see from brands in the future. A brick-and-mortar retailer might receive a request for a future store location while a coffee company might see responses asking for a specific roast or even drink to come back on the menus. At Sprout, we often field Tweets from customers with new feature requests which we pass along to our product team for consideration later on.

How to find this information: A single place where you’re likely to find customer feedback is right in your inbox. With Sprout’s tagging capabilities , you can even label and type messages by type as they come through, making it easy to pass along product requests towards the appropriate teams. Another way to solicit feedback around what customers want to see from your brand would be to simply ask. You’d be surprised how many people react to a question published on Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook using their thoughts and ideas.

5. See exactly what trends customers are interested within

As volatile because they may be, trends have a substantial impact on a brand’s interpersonal strategy and how they match their audience. Jumping around the right trending topic at the right time on interpersonal can be a jolt to brand name awareness and customer engagement. Nostalgia marketing, for example , is really a rising trend among customers and big name brands such as General Mills are taking advantage of people’s desire for a childhood throwback in their latest promotions.

Where to find this information: To quickly see what’s well-known, check out the explore tab on platforms like Twitter plus YouTube or use a tool like Google Trends to see what topics are getting traction. You can also use Sprout’s listening tool to identify styles within your industry and subjects most relevant to your customers. Along with listening , you can uncover keywords and terms most commonly used by your own target audience and discover related subjects frequently mentioned with any terms you’re currently tracking.

Screenshot of the relevant hashtags in the Sprout listening tool

6. Get to know your customers on a personal level

The beauty of social media is it encourages two-way conversations between brands and their customers, giving brands an opportunity to get to know their audience on an individual level. Facebook communities, for example , provide consumers a space to reach know one another, celebrate individual milestones or share problems. Peloton is known for curating massive communities where cyclists can find support and inspiration from peers, while Peloton gets to learn a little more about the people who make up their viewers.

Where to find this information: To access know your audience much better, consider building out your community management strategy on platforms like Instagram or Reddit to stay connected with your customers. Give your customers a reason to engage with your brand by responding to their own questions or posting topics for conversation. To help nurture those relationships with your viewers further, Sprout’s social media engagement tools ensure you never skip a message from someone inside your community.

7. Pinpoint what social content resonates with your audience

With millions (if not billions) of articles publishing on social every day, brands need to be strategic about what content they post in order to capture their audience’s attention. Take stock of your current content to see what styles or content formats gas your performance goals. If video clip in-feed posts garner more impressions than text content and raising awareness can be your top goal, consider trading more in video manufacturing. Or, if you want to drive discussion, look at what posts along with high engagement (e. g., comments and shares) possess in common. Finally, it by no means hurts to ask your audience directly what subjects or social content they want to see from your brand in the future.

How to locate this information: To get the content that resonates most powerful with your audience, start by looking at the native analytics and data report tabs per social channel. Sprout’s Post Performance Report helps you break up the types of content you’ve published and identify which performed the best. For more gekörnt insights, you can sort simply by impressions, engagement and ticks to determine what formats and themes are most effective upon specific networks.

Sprout's cross channel analytics

Better research starts with social

The best marketing and advertising campaigns are the ones that show a brand really gets its audience. When brand names demonstrate they understand their customers’ wants and requirements, they stand to reinforce their bottom line and create customers for life.

Thanks to social media marketing research, brands have access to fast and reliable insights that deepen their understanding of what makes their audience tick. From identifying brand new opportunities to improving customer associations, data from social allows brands to make smarter decisions that contribute to their business goals.

Ready to turn your social information into valuable insights regarding your industry and customers? Download this worksheet to learn how to conduct quick plus valuable market research in under 90 minutes.

The particular post seven ways to use social media designed for market research made an appearance first on Sprout Social .

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