Why you should use social media to recruit participants.
Are you planning to organise some market research this year? You should consider getting your participants from your social media channels.
If you’re taking steps to organise some market research - a vital part of gathering information for your marketing strategy - then let us help you with finding your market research group.
Establishing Your Audience
Market research begins with the right questions but also the right people. There is no point in investing money into researching information about a new fitness drink and then find you’re talking to persons who have no interest in exercise. They aren’t your target market.
You need to establish who your target market is, and this may not be completely obvious to you at first. The best thing to do is use the information that you already have. Talk to your customers right now. Find out their gender, age, job, location - as much as you can.
Once you have this information you can use it to work out who you should be asking your marketing questions to. Finding a similar demographic is not difficult when you use the right tools.
So you have your demographic - and perhaps a little more. Maybe you’ve noted that you would be keen to find out if a new set of people - for example, the over 50’s - would be interested in your product. Yes they aren't buying it yet, but it’s a potential marketplace you haven’t opened up to.
This is fine too - definitely start your market research with your known customers and, if budget allows, expand to include other potential markets too. It’s a great way of testing the waters before you go in all guns blazing.
What’s The Question?
Ensuring your questions are on point will make the difference between having useful data and useless data. You can gather a bunch of information but if it doesn’t help you move forward then it’s not a good use of your time or money.
So make sure your data is collected in the most efficient way possible. You can decide to gather qualitative and quantitative data - or both. At the end you must have answers you can use to make decisions about the future. Take the time to really consider what you want to find out and how you will do once you have that info.
Mining Social Media
So now you have your perfect demographic and the questions ready to go. How do you go about accessing these people to ask the vital questions? Recruiting your participants is a doddle - and it’s relatively cheap - if you use the right tools.
Facebook and Instagram both have a vast amount of information on their audience. From gender, to age, to location, right down to profession, and hobbies and interests, to what time they are more susceptible to marketing. They have a very refined algorithm for ensuring you’re able to access the persons you are looking for.
Set up your ad campaign and use your demographic knowledge to focus your ads on your key audience - and in no time you’ll have the right people clicking on your ads and participating in your research.
Nothing in this world is flawless and this method of participant recruitment is no exception. People who interact with Facebook and Instagram will have a certain age and will likely own a mobile phone, tablet or laptop, or all three.
However this bias will exist in almost all other participant recruitment methods, and for the majority of market research, you do want persons who own a phone or a car, and have enough money to spend on luxuries. It’s worth noting that there’s a bias, but it’s a small price to pay for such a reliably niche audience.
Taking The First Step.
So now you know all of the above what should you do? Either go it alone, or ask an agency or market research professional to support you. An agency can help with the end to end campaign, from pin-pointing who you should be speaking with, and how to access them, to writing up the research study and ensuring your questions get the right answers, and how you should interpret them.