Market Research

All posts tagged Market Research

Get the Right Message and Get Their Attention

by Joanne Dolezal on 20th July 2018

The modern consumer is egocentric, and truly only cares about themself.

They care about what they are trying to achieve and what matters most to them.

So naturally, they skim (ruthlessly) over content in their social media feeds that aren’t of interest to them.

Unless you get the right message you will not get their attention.

This means that your content and posts need to be tailored to them. Just them.

They need to be interesting, engaging and relevant. To them.

If it’s about you, your customers really aren’t that interested. Unless it’s about them.


Zig Ziglar famously said:

“people don’t care how much you know, until they know how much you care”

Particularly, how much you care about them.

If you can reach out to people with your content and demonstrate that you have something that will change their lives, then you will get their attention.

Listen with your eyes

You need to post and share content that’s relevant to their lives, so how do you find out what that is? Enter, ‘social listening’.

I highly recommend watching and listening (observing) your customers on social media, whether you’re just starting out or moving to the next level. Be passive and see what people are talking about, sharing and interacting with. If you don’t you can often get it wrong.

Develop buyer personas

When you are ready to move beyond the broader categories that people fall into (segments) and start thinking about what is influencing their decision making, you may want to develop your buyer personas. Our recent blog on buyer personas explored the different ingredients that go to make up a buyer persona, but if you take the time and really drill down into who they are and what makes them tick, creating content for them will come as naturally as speaking with an old friend.

Get inside your customers head

Who is your customer and what do they want? Perhaps they’re trying to overcome a challenge or tackle an issue that they’re dealing with. Or it could be something positive, such as an aspiration or desire.

If you appeal to their current mindset, rather than giving a lot of information about your products, services and staff, you will get their attention more easily. Concentrate on solutions to their challenges, ways to reach their ambitions and try to anticipate their questions. If you can give them the answers, you will be helping them to come to a decision. And demonstrating your expertise and trustworthiness.

And get inside your customers heart

When you start talking about someone’s problems, their fears, hopes and aspirations, in a way that shows respect, empathy and understanding, you get their attention.

“If there is any one secret of success, it lies in the ability to get the other person’s point of view and see things from that person’s angle as well as from your own.”

Henry Ford (quoted in Dale Carnegie)

This is your opportunity to show the human side of your brand – social media is a great place for us to demonstrate our ‘personality’ – and make a personal connection.

What’s really interesting, is that even B2B purchase decisions will be influenced by how the customer feels. It is not just a rational decision, so think about how they feel right at the moment. Can you appeal to their emotions?

What is the Right Message?

We’re still selling something. Good sales people know that you’ve won the sale when the answer to all your questions is: YES. You’ve exhausted their objections, allayed their fears, gained their trust and confidence, then finally, their business.

It’s whatever you say, that makes them want to say ‘ yes’.

We hope you’ve enjoyed the The Three Rs of Social Media Success.

Why not check out the other blogs in the series:

  1. The Three ‘Rs’ of Social Media Success
  2. Know the Right Place for Social Media Success
  3. How do You Know the Right Time for Your Customers on Social Media
  4. Get the Right Message: Get their Attention
  5. Build Your Social Media Following versus Buying Reach and Followers
  6. Are your Goals ‘SMART’ Enough for Social Media Success?
  7. ‘Mobile First’, Live Streaming & How to Succeed with Social Media Marketing

If you like video, check out our recording of this fascinating topic and learn from these amazing thoughtleaders.

Our new online programme Content Marketing Conquered is designed with you in mind. Based on our successful workshop programme and latest strategies, we guide you to the top in 6 easy steps.

Don’t leave without grabbing your free eBook.


Photo by Adam Jang on Unsplash

read more
Joanne DolezalGet the Right Message and Get Their Attention

Why Competitor Benchmarking is Essential for Your Business to Succeed

by Joanne Dolezal on 15th November 2013

In my Marketing Consultancy in North East England, I regularly help small businesses to build their marketing and communications strategy.  I believe in strategy and strategic thinking.  Otherwise, how can you ever focus on your goals, make decisions about the best (of many) courses of action and ultimately achieve them?

I’m a bit ‘old-school’ and have enough respect for the early pioneers and trailblazers in Marketing to follow a traditional approach to strategy building (combined with the most innovative tactics) .  Analysing the Competition is part of the strategy build, but it’s not just a box-ticking exercise.

It can be one of the most enlightening steps on the journey and a chance to reflect and learn.

Competitor Benchmarking holds a yardstick up to your commercial rivals and a mirror up to your own business.  It is a hugely empowering process, for even for the smallest enterprise.

Here’s why.

Giant Slaying

It is well-know fact that people are afraid of competition.  They don’t like it.  It makes them feel threatened and a bit out-of-step.  This applies to every part of our lives: school, siblings, romance, the workplace.

When you look at your competitors, you may just see what you are conditioned to see: they’re more popular, handsome, wealthy or successful and you can’t see beyond that.  You certainly can’t see why it is so.  Or even if it is true.

You need to look at them from above, from a great height, and look at their whole eco-system objectively.  Then zoom in to look at particular areas of their business to see how they are doing it.  Often, they’re not so good-looking close up!  And a trained marketing eye will find their weaknesses.

Remember, it was David who overcame Goliath…

USPs and Differentiation

We’re all aware of the need for USPs (Unique Selling Propositions) and are expected to rattle them off at will.  Gosh, that can be hard.  They often end up sounding banal: quality, professionalism, customer intimacy, etc.

So what if you had a bigger set of vocabulary to use, based on an extensive set of criteria.  That’s when it gets interesting.  For example, your collective experience and qualifications, when looked at in detail, will make your company different. Is there anything that only you know or do?  A particular product that only you make?

If you haven’t looked at your competitors in detail, you won’t know if you really are unique.

But if you have and you know it to be true, you can tell the world with confidence.

Market Positioning

The 7Ps (Product/Service, Price, Place, Promotion, People, Processes and Physical Evidence) are as important to your business today as they ever were.  Don’t be fooled into thinking that they’re not.  If you haven’t found the right combination for your target customers, it will affect your company’s success.

Competitor Benchmarking looks at how your business rivals are faring and gives you the important yardsticks with which to measure your own business.   It also tells you where competitors are hoping to differentiate themselves from each other.

SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) and Digital Marketing, for example, can tell you a great deal about how competitors in the same space are trying to differentiate their offering (Promotion) and who they are targeting.

They may not be targeting your target market!

Alternative Strategies?

Once you have got the full measure of your competitors you may discover that there are ‘gaps in the market’.  You may be smaller, more agile and able to respond to these gaps more rapidly, but make sure that there is also a ‘market in the gap’.

You may find that you have complementary skills, processes or products and services.  Is there an opportunity to collaborate?  Or to refer customers to each other, when you don’t have what they’re looking for, but your competitor does?

In many industries, this is increasingly the model but it does require deeper knowledge of the market place, and real confidence in what your company does.

You may discover that you are more different than you think.

Acknowledge their achievements

Occasionally, people can be unfairly critical of competitors or even complacent about them  If I had a £10 for everyone who has told me that they “don’t really have any competition”, I’d be a millionaire by now.  Okay, slight exaggeration, but you get the point.

Even if your product or service is the first and only one of its kind in the whole wide world, you are competing with the next best thing, the thing your target customer found first, OR buyer apathy.  They may buy nothing at all!

When you consider the trailblazers in your industry, market makers in your sector, you also learn who is deserving of your respect.  You lose nothing but showing them respect and if they are secure, they may even help you up the ladder.

Ask yourself, honestly, are you prepared to do what they had to do to get where they are today?  You may not be…

And that may be okay.

“Maybe you ain’t doin’ so bad after all…”

Clients often think the competition is ‘taller and better-looking’.

It’s really encouraging to find that they are heavily made-up and walking on stilts!

The knowledge this gives these small businesses enables them to create their brand, their marketing strategy and ultimately to sell their products and services with authority, pride and authenticity.

This is the part that I enjoy the most. 

So who is the Goliath on your street?

Have you found a way to look at their business more closely and get some perspective on ‘them and us’?

I’d love to hear how you discovered what was unique about your company and how you used that knowledge to take your business forward.




read more
Joanne DolezalWhy Competitor Benchmarking is Essential for Your Business to Succeed

Travel Bureau Corporate Travel

by designarttia on 4th August 2011

Travel Bureau

Travel Bureau Corporate Travel Management Services enjoys long-standing relationships, but wanted to expand and bring the services and benefits of a comprehensive Corporate Travel Management Service to new audiences.

Established in the 1980s, the team had extensive knowledge of Corporate Travel Management but needed to diversify their customer base in terms of size, sector and geography.  This was a long term project, much of it delivered on site, which allowed for a much deeper understanding of the company culture, values and ethos.

Our brief was manifold:

  • to clarify the selling messages via a customer satisfaction survey of all corporate contacts to establish values, priorities and role in the booking cycle
  • manage the segmentation and targeting of key messages to key audience sectors
  • database marketing – e-communications and regular newsletters and e-blasts
  • complete overhaul of the corporate website
  • producing a range of print to support business development and ‘clinch the deal’
  • press and media campaign to celebrate 50th anniversary.

The quantitative market research for this project was done in partnership with Travelscape.

Travel Bureau, Gosforth, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE3 4AT

read more
designarttiaTravel Bureau Corporate Travel

Stepney Bank Stables – Inner City Equestrian Centre

by designarttia on 29th July 2011

Stepney Bank Stables

Stepney Bank Stables is an inner city equestrian centre established in 1999.  As well as providing first class riding lessons at all levels, Stepney Bank offers an opportunity for volunteers of all ages to gain hands on experience of horse husbandry.

Stepney Bank Stables is a registered charity yet relies on income from regular riders so customer retention is essential to survival.  Having noticed a change in customer loyalty to riding lessons in recent years, they wanted was to explore riders reasons for leaving.

Our brief a lapsed rider survey, has paved the way for a regular cycle of customer satisfaction surveys – managed in-house – to review and improve customer satisfaction levels and overall service offering.

Stepney Bank Stables, Ouseburn, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE1 2PN


read more
designarttiaStepney Bank Stables – Inner City Equestrian Centre