Why We Should Use Bots for Market Research
Market Research is the backbone of strategic planning at most mid-size+ companies. It’s how your adversaries know the moves you’re going to make before you do, and it’s how they soak up market share as your boss pink slips you into oblivion.
Messenger bots are enabling smaller companies to get in the game now. Given you have built an engaged audience, getting the feedback necessary for a study is a non-issue. The challenge lies in the structure of the survey and keeping your data influence-free.
Additionally, with direct access to your cohort, you are able to rapidly deploy research campaigns and get the answers we need now, instead of in 6 months down the line.
Tips for Setting Up a Successful Bot Research Campaign
If you’re new to conducting qualitative research, read this article. For sake of brevity, we will keep this closely aligned to bot operations and not reinventing the wheel. Here are some tips to keep in mind while crafting your bot.
- Get Prehistoric
Once your study has been designed and drafted, get out and in front of your customers and ask the questions. This will help work out the kinks in our study before we build the bot. It will save you troves of time and headache later.
2. Encouraging Participation
Once we have our defined our goals and have structured our experiment accordingly, we need to encourage users to help us. Everyone likely will go about this in their own unique way. An e-commerce store may offer a coupon, a brand may offer a free product sample or a gift card, and a restaurant may give me a free app for helping them out. The sky’s the limit, though, try to not be this lame.
Note: Stay away from giving things out for free. If you attract a bunch of freeloaders, you may not get the results you want, and be out a bunch of cash.
3. Segmentation with Tagging
While designing your survey in whatever platform you use, ensure each step has a unique identifier. This will prove useful when you begin to analyze your data.
4. Keep The Flow
Engagement will be tough for some. Try to keep your conversations brief, interesting, and keep the flow. Try to lead the conversation to maintain interest. After all, your team isn’t interviewing them in person- they can leave at any time. Metrics like engagement can be easily tracked using a tool like Botanalytics or Google’s new platform, Chatbase.
5. Bot as a Research Instrument (+ You)
Automation is nice, but keep an eye on your responses. While we are automating this, keep a researcher on hand to tweak the flow if need be, or to hop in and ask deeper questions.
Special Note on Reported Vs. Actual Behavior
Prime example of what not to do.
As I mentioned in the intro of this article, Messenger bots are full of things like emojis, gifs, videos- the possibilities are endless. I am not some salty armchair warrior advocating for the death of cute kissy face text icons, but let me be real with you- they can totally ruin your data, and acting on bad data can totally ruin your business. I’ll keep this pretty horizontal- just a few helpful tips:
- Skip the emojis. Period. They will influence your responses.
- Save your visual content for after the survey is complete, such as the thank you message. Images are distracting and could influence a response participants otherwise may not have given.
- Maintain consistency, keep it concise, and no frills.