Consumer insights are vital for the growth of your business and will remove the guesswork when it comes to satisfying your consumers. In the end, you save time, money and effort and your customers will feel like they're listened to, valued, and consequently, keep coming back for more or even better, introduce their friends to your business.
How to use consumer insights in your business?
Having the right consumer insights is like having a sneak peek into the future, enabling your business to innovate from an advantageous position. For example, consumer insights are particularly useful when you're developing a new product, a new service or adding new features. While experience and past knowledge from product leaders are essential, it's dangerous to roll out a new product without finding out what your intended customers really want.
The Consumer Packaged Goods (CPG) industry is highly competitive with a real challenge when it comes to market fragmentation. How can data help to effectively group market fragmentation? The first step is to know your audience's preferences and what they are looking for; just like how you wouldn't buy a 36oz porterhouse steak for your vegan friend. This information can be deduced from structured and/or unstructured types of data.
Use that data to create and define a strategy, then create personalised experiences. At the end of the cycle, more data should be collected and the results analysed.
Consumer insights are the best source to learn about your customer expectations, what they are thinking, what they like and what they don't like. Thus, in order to utilise data effectively in different areas of your business you need to perfect your consumer insights strategy.
Perfecting your consumer insight strategy
With AI comes automation that could help perfect your strategy and save you time. Look at AI for data gathering, analysis and presentation, the timing of many of the above steps will be shortened and the results will be more accurate. When you have identified your scope from your consumer insights strategy, then you can look for the best supplier/partner that provides you with the best tools for the job.
We advise the following 4 steps to create the perfect consumer insights strategy:
- First, make sure you've got the basics right:
- Your business objective: you'll need to set up the priorities over a defined period, with your team.
- The project timeline: from gathering the data, through to analysing, presenting and implementing the changes.
- The limitations: Think about the limitations you and your team will have to creatively find ways to achieve your project goals.
- Finding relevant segments for your consumer research: do your homework on your customers and clients, or gain tools to explore and discover new segments relevant to you.
- Identify and organise the data that you need: type of data needed for the project and if existing ones aren't enough, gather new data with specialist tools. For example, the Skim Engine, provides new data from unstructured web sources, like reviews.
- The most important aspect to consider when searching for data for a project, is to ensure that the data you're collecting is actually useful. If it's poor quality, your strategic decisions will be too.
- Form your consumer insights team and choose the right toolset. People and tech will need to co-operate smoothly. What you need is the ability for your teams to find patterns in data, particularly in the modern world where data is bigger, faster and more varied than ever before. And if you choose to have an augmented consumer insights platform, your team will need to be familiar with how it works.
When thinking of purchasing technology, you should consider five key components:
- People needed: is the skillset of your team right?
- Data needed: what existing data can you use, and what do you need to add?
- Technology investment: costs, hosting, complexity of running it, how long will it take to implement?
- Culture change: does this implementation fit your company culture?
- Process innovation: do you need to adopt new processes? What processes does the technology replace? What other areas of the business will it affect/improve?
- In our experience, we've seen clients using smart insights throughout the business and for decision making. But the impact of using these technologies and tools can have a ripple effect throughout the business. So it's paramount to get buy-in from more than just your team or department, especially if you'll be making big strategic decisions based on it.
With the immense quantity of data existing, the opportunities can be endless, it's all down to you and your team's ability to establish the right scope for your business and project.
- Create your customer journey map, from the initial contact, from consideration to purchase, retention and advocacy. Here is a useful template that can help you build a customer journey map.
- Decide whether you want to buy a consumer insights platform ready built, off-the-shelf. Or, work with consultants to build you a unique tool that can monitor specific audiences, competitors and markets that could give you that edge.
More on AI in consumer insights…
AI is changing the consumer insights space, whether you already have a strategy in place or whether you're already building one, it's good practice to take a step back and make sure you are updated with the best tools, that your teams are trained in data analysis, and that you are really getting all the good aspects out of the data.
AI brings new methods for insights analytics solutions and reduces the intensity of labour for your team members. In fact, your team members will be able to devote their time to better and more meaningful tasks.
By following the above steps to develop a strategy and collect these insights, you'll be able to fine-tune your business to your customer's needs and wants, resulting in trust and loyalty from your customers, keeping them coming back for more.