In order for businesses to evolve, many of them cannot rely solely on intuition and the gut feelings from their leaders. It is true that those elements can take a business a very long way, but once that road ends, businesses have to resort to that one activity many dread.
Yes, research is a tough sell to many these days. It's money and activity upfront, even before a decision is made. In some cases, businesses are spending money to get the answer they didn't want. Then again, looking on the positive side, businesses can spend resources now that help them save money down the road.
And how do businesses collect research? Consumers are usually bothered by surveys, especially online. Many just want to find the information they are looking for and leave the site.
We understand; we've been there, too.
This is exactly what Twitter was grappling with when trying to decide how to gather, monitor, and track new activities for the social network. How can it sample the masses?
It seems the answer was pretty self-explanatory — they created a social network.
Birdsignals is a research community that Twitter, with help from market research company Vision Critical, created and launched in the UK. Right now, people in the UK can join (we tried and it kicked us out once we said we lived outside the UK), see what new things Twitter is trying to do, and provide feedback to the company. Though anyone can try to join, it is taking in a certain amount of different users; the prompt at the beginning states there are certain criteria they are looking for.
As market research geeks, we are thrilled to see how Twitter is using its digital know-how to create an in-house research forum.
We hope it comes to the U.S. soon so we can try it out (hint hint).
Dwayne W. Waite Jr. is partner and principal at JDW: The Charlotte Agency, a marketing and advertising shop in Charlotte, NC. He enjoys consumer behavior, economics, and football.
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