Market Research First, Then the Campaigns

In an earlier column, we had talked about social media can be a powerful tool for primary research and how an enterprise need to listen to social media analytics. However, if you are running a social media campaign, it is important to do some deep dive before the campaign itself.

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Pre campaign validation of product is key for outcome based digital marketing campaigns.

We were doing a a campaign in a different geography ( it was not our first time, but the context was unique). The product itself was defined, and the target market was defined through customer’s own definition.

We started our campaign based on the product and target audience defined by our customer. We approached in a simple manner – a dipstick, then a pre-campaign, then the core campaign ( with a specific outcome). Our approach really sounded great – and we had probably all the team members in place.

One of the specific efforts of the campaign was to look at the ‘interest groups’ or ‘advocates’ who aligned with the cause this product claimed to solve. When we reached to these with the message ‘lets work together’ they questioned the data shared by the product to establish the solution.

They said, ‘ we are engineers and scientists working for ages on this solution, and what our client was offering was a solution to a problem that never existed. Our client was shocked about the feedback, and refused to engage and explain to the group. So we had to ‘cease and desist’ the campaign.

When we looked back at our campaign, we realized that we did one glaring error, and also a big oversight. We felt that the product needed more ‘demonstrable’ features, and also a clear ‘competition’. But as we dug deeper, we realized that the ‘problem’ needed to be verified – with respect to specific target groups. What was missing was a primary research.

Independent research before accepting outcome based contracts: PPC, CTC or SMM campaigns that one plans should be accepted based on an independent analysis. This should be done even before the proposal stage.

Seek primary market research data before accepting outcome based contracts:Customers may have data that might be useful for understanding the product better. While they place trust on your confidence and abilities, it is important that the success is not your responsibility alone, but it also matters that the product is good, fit and solving the problem that it claims to solve.

Legal caveats to protect liability in case of campaign failure: It is important to understand that as a social media campaign manager you are handling the brand’s online reputation, and may cause serious damage, or perceived damage. It is important for the campaign teams to ensure that the implications are understood and liabilities limited.

-Ashok Subramanian

First published in Linkedin Pulse. 

 

Ashok Subramanian
Ashok Subramanian

Ashok Subramanian is an entrepreneur and Managing Director of Amrocky Technologies.  Amrocky offers Digital Marketing and Analytics services under its brand Bueno Digital.

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