Wednesday, October 31, 2012

The Role of Market Research in SEO

Needle in a haystack
If you do a search for your company’s website, where do you show up? Or do you show up so far down the list that you may as well not show up at all? This is what your customers are seeing (or rather not seeing). Getting good results on a search engine means you are in the top 20. Most customers aren’t going to take the time to look beyond this point whether they’ve found what they’re looking for or not.
Let’s face it, even top 20 for a business is risky. You really need to shoot for top 5. So how do you develop a search engine optimization (SEO) strategy to boost your online presence and increase your brand awareness?  Two words: market research.
Here are a few examples of how market research can take your search engine optimization strategy to the next level.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Market Research… The Selling of Lust

How can market research help a company that relies on male hormones to sell its product? It’s an interesting question because it illustrates how important market research is whether you are selling pharmaceuticals, financial services or lust.

Axe makes body sprays for young men. With a $2.5 billion global brand and enormous growth they have a knack of creating marketing that is relevant yet raunchy enough to appeal to their target audience. When you go to their website, the first thing you see is a humorous environmentally friendly pitch asking if you are ready to save water. Referring to this as Showerpooling they suggest:  firstly, installing a water-efficient showerhead; secondly, limiting shower time to 5 minutes; and lastly, inviting a friend to get into the action. What’s cheeky and brilliant about this campaign is that the advice really does help the environment. More importantly for Axe though, is that every time a teen or twenty something male comes to their website and sees the Showerpooling graphic, they are sure to have a plethora of reactions ranging from fantasy to pure unadulterated testosterone driven lust.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Good Market Research - Getting to Know Your Customers

We are motivated by two things, praise or reward. It’s kind of funny, but whether you are 3 years old or 43 years old, it’s the same. I can make my son do chores or homework without a fight simply by offering him ice cream. I know I am willing to go the extra mile for an adult version of ice cream (for me that’s the latest teckie gadget). Oh heck… who am I kidding? Real ice cream still works for me too. The point is how do you motivate your customers?
The first step is to understand your customers. Market research can help you know who your customers are, as well as what they want. You have to ask the right questions though. If you don’t really know your customers you will not retain them, thus leaving you to chase after new ones constantly. Don’t just follow your instincts as many companies do. Take the time and really get to know them. Ask the right questions; get the facts; and therefore discover how to motivate your customers.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Election Jitters? Is Business Uncertainty Holding you Back?

Change, we don’t like it. In fact, we not only fear it. Many of us dread it. It doesn’t matter what it is. Whether it’s changing small things like the route we drive to work or our toothpaste, it stresses us out and makes us anxious.

Many eyes were on Denver this week when President Obama and Governor Romney met for the first of the presidential debates. Business decision makers from the U.S. and abroad were hoping to get their first glimpse into the future White House occupants, and with good reason. There are a host of policy alternatives at play in this election that will affect the course of industries from healthcare to energy, transportation to construction, and telecom to agriculture.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

How market research is more than just hiney hygiene!

I can’t think of any classy way to say this, so I’ll just say it straight out. When you think of toilet paper you think of - - well -- hineys, bums, tushies, a caboose, keister, arse…. the list goes on. OK I admit it; I actually looked up slang words for buttocks!

But I digress. Procter & Gamble is the undisputed leader in the U.S. toilet paper market. Charmin toilet paper has been around for 70 years, so clearly it has wiped the cheeks of everyone from Harry S. Truman to Lady Gaga. They probably know everything there is to know about butts! Maybe there’s piped music blaring through their offices by Sir Mix-a-lot. "I like big butts, and I cannot lie!" Alright, maybe not, but how great would that be!

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Advertising in Education - Old School or New School?

Research in the School and Educational Market
Marketing and advertising evident in a 1910 Schoolhouse
If you think that advertising in schools is a relatively new phenomenon, look closely at the wall of this 1910 restoration of Rosehill Schoolhouse at the Cherokee Strip Museum in Oklahoma. Along with the wood burning stove, well worn desks and dusty chalk boards you will notice a handful of advertisements for local businesses. Direct marketing in schools has been around for at least the last century; it is an interesting exercise to see how some of the marketing efforts have changed.