There are myriad reasons why companies collect market research. After research has been collected, companies may utilize this research to target their marketing strategy, decide on which demographics they are going to primarily market to, and which demographics are lower priority. Businesses can decide which products to promote and which to forgo promotion on, and which of their products or features will be more prominently highlighted.
Primary market research is collected with a specific purpose and its intended to solve a specific problem. This type of research is extremely focused and is undertaken with the intention of coming up with a solution to a very precise issue.
Examples of primary market research include mystery shopping, focus groups, product tests, and diaries. In each instance, the potential consumer is interacting directly with the product being tested, and then imparting their thoughts utilizing various reporting methods.
Interactive voice response systems can be instrumental in allowing researchers to collect, store, and process the data they receive.
Users that engage in mystery shopping could simply call into a survey immediately after their exit from a store, so that their ideas would be new and fresh. They could answer survey questions based on scale or multiple-choice questions, or even record their own responses so researchers could account for factors like inflection. Shoppers would able to call in immediately and offer their thoughts on the venue they had just visited.
Many times, businesses organize focus groups to analyze various products and bounce ideas off of each other. IVRs could be used in focus groups to allow participants to reflect on the information they have just discussed, and call into to get additional information about the product for the future. Users could share group thoughts (via a conference call) or individually call in to a system to reflect.
Many times, users are asked to keep diaries tracking their behavior (a prominent example is Nielsen who has users write in viewership diaries). Instead of tediously having to sit down at the computer or write in a journal, users can simply call in and record their thoughts as they come, allowing market researchers to get more stream-of-consciousness feedback versus edited commentary.
Interactive voice response systems can be vital to market researchers because they record test subjects views, perceptions, and ideas the moment they are happening, giving them unfettered access to customer’s product perceptions.