Target audience of market research

Who are these people and how to work with them?

Some time ago we were developing a proposal for a company producing aluminum profile structures. A fairly traditional task was set – to understand consumer behavior patterns when choosing a contractor for the manufacture of structures.

After talking with the client and the conducting of Desk Search it became clear that we need to focus on two groups: firstly, these are the customers of aluminum profile structures, which should include both end users and the corporate segment representatives.

And, secondly, this is the so-called expert group – professionals, foremen, architects, as well as other specialists with experience in ordering aluminum structures for end users.

Only these people are able to give us answers to the client’s questions.

The proposal was prepared, the client was familiarized… however, go ahead with this project did not work out. The reason became quite unusual – the client could not believe that it was possible to find out these people and invite them to participate in the study and get the result.

Where will you find them? Who will answer you? It’s impossible at all!” – approximately in such words she expressed her objections.

Of course, we are not magicians, and finding the right people to do research is always a challenge. However, we would not be doing this if we did not have a certain algorithm of actions and the necessary resources.

A small remark – honestly, well, it is impossible to reveal the topic of recruiting respondents without it.

If you are one of those people with a developed critical thinking skill and think that all these questionnaires are “always drawn”, just try to answer the questions of the questionnaire, for example, on the doses used when using drugs of the botulinum toxin group in cosmetic procedures on the face.

However, back to the topic.

What is the algorithm when recruiting for respondents?

And we have already talked about this, to determine as accurately as possible the circle of people who can act as a target audience. Where do they work? By whom? What age? What work experience do you have? What is the income? How often do they order/use the product or service?

Develop a detailed screener for selecting respondents. What is meant? Write down all the questions that a potential respondent must answer in order to meet the selection conditions. For example, if we are talking about IT-specialists, then we bother for quite a long time to correctly determine the entire list of respondents’ professions that meet the requirements of the client. Sometimes we need developers who work only in JavaScript, SQL, C#/.NET.

Test the developed screener with the client and the potential target audience. Are all points taken into account and is everything clear?

Determine an adequate amount of remuneration for respondents. What does it depend on? In fact, many factors. And on how narrow the circle of the search is (after all, inviting people suffering from rare diseases to the project is not comparable with the search for sales managers of household appliances), and on how much time it takes to talk with the moderator or fill out the questionnaire, and also on how complex/sensitive the research topic is.

Develop a schedule for conducting research, if these are in-depth, expert interviews or focus groups, it is very important that the project schedule is convenient for all participants. Set aside time for unpredictable events, because life is life.

Transfer the screener to a team of recruiters – people who are professionally engaged in the search for respondents according to certain criteria. The circle of social contacts for such people is always wide, however, in order to find the right people for different projects, sometimes you have to go through a complex labyrinth of social contacts. It is also important to remember that the number of respondents invited to participate is always slightly larger than the design of the project. Again, our work is determined by the human factor.

Record all the data on the respondents, according to the screener, and familiarize the project participants with it. During the project, managers must maintain constant contact with respondents, because different circumstances constantly attack beautiful graphs and unshakable hypotheses.

After the interview, make sure that the respondent receives the incentives on time, and that satisfaction from working with the project team brings him positive emotions for a long time to come.

What target groups do we work with?

In fact, the list is always changing. No two marketing research requests are exactly the same.

However, let us define the key groups of respondents who most often take part in marketing and sociological research.

  • End consumers of various goods/services
  • Consumers in the b2b segment
  • HoReCa staff
  • Business community experts
  • Highly qualified rare specialists
  • IT specialists
  • Farmers, agrarians
  • Engineers, designers
  • Media representatives, bloggers
  • Physicians, pharmacists and other medical personnel
  • Patients, including those suffering from serious illnesses
  • Teenagers, children, pensioners
  • Trendsetters and opinion leaders

We are sure that the result of marketing research is 50% depend on how carefully the agency approached the search for “those” respondents.

The last 50% is, of course, the work of the analytical team, because getting the recordings / texts of the interview is an important and very laborious stage, however, the conclusions and recommendations for the client will depend on the quality of the analytical work.