Audience Research

Written by Sierra Rein
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To keep in touch with the ebb and flow of fashions, opinions and demands of the average consumer, it is up to a company to perform the best audience research it can. This means coming into contact with potential clients and asking their particular thoughts about a specific product, service or performance. It can inform the company on the right things it has accomplished thus far and protect it from making disastrous mistakes in the future.

Before doing a little audience research, a company must understand the specific demographics of all potential consumers and clients. The marketing team should look towards the past and find out what the percentages within each age range, nationality, and gender have bought their company's products thus far. If the company is just starting out, doing research on potential competitors will help the marketing team gain insight into the possible audience it will need to poll.

Audience Research, Face to Face

There are many opportunities to collect opinion data from audience members. Asking customers to fill out small questionnaires as they leave the store or once they open a package is one way to do it. Another, more technologically advanced method, is to request people within special demographics to take part in focus groups and use electronic keypad systems to collect information throughout the meeting.

Some of these electronic data researching systems are so advanced that the marketing team can watch the reactions of an audience on a play-by-play, moment-by-moment basis. A digital timeline graphs the average audience response within each demographic group and can show instantly if one group (say, women in the audience over 50) approve or disapprove of a certain product's feature. The moderator can notice this and interrupt the process to delve deeper into the matter and ask the audience if they have any constructive thoughts or additions they would like to add.

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