In a world where marketing channels are ever-increasing, it’s becoming imperative to nail down exactly what attitudes your consumers have when attempting to purchase services and products. Attitudinal research and the subsequent data collected is often the missing ingredient when building a brand and messaging strategy.
Attitudinal data can provide powerful insights into the “why” your customers buy and how you can improve the overall experience. When you bring in attitudinal research to your brand, you can begin to add color and depth to the basic outline of your customer and bring your marketing efforts to life.
You can tailor the experience to the exact people you want to benefit.
Attitudinal Research versus Behavioral Research
It’s important to understand the distinction between attitudinal research and behavioral research to understand what’s going to best fit your business needs.
“Attitudinal Research: the gathering of data to measure consumers’ attitudes to a product or brand in terms of their knowledge and opinions of it, their overall impressions of it and their degree of loyalty to it.”Monash University
Behavioral research is research where you observe the actions of those around you: what they buy, where they go, the decisions they make. Attitudinal research is research done through asking people’s opinions, it’s more involved research. You can do attitudinal research through different types of studies: ethnographic studies, surveys, the traditional focus groups, A/B testing and more.
For example: you can observe your customer using your product. You can watch them interact with the product, watch how they use it and take note on if they use it for the intended purpose or invent one of their own.
Behavioral research is just one piece of the puzzle, though, it takes attitudinal research to delve in deeper into the “why”.
After your customer is done interacting with the product, you can ask them several questions about why they decided to purchase your product versus other options, what they expect from it and more. By using both behavioral and attitudinal research, you will have a clearer picture of your market, their needs, their actions, their perceptions, and why your product or service is right, or not right, for them.
Questions Attitudinal Research Can Help Answer
Attitudinal research should help to guide your brand development and messaging strategy by identifying opportunities to expand and improve. You can also use attitudinal research to improve product or service offerings and attract new consumers.
Brand Usage: What percent of the market buys from my brand? How frequently do they buy? How do customers find out about our brand?
Brand Awareness: How many customers think about our brand without being prompted? How many customers have heard of our brand name when they see it?
Brand Attitudes: What is our brand’s reputation? Are customers more satisfied with what we have to offer than our competitors? How are we meeting our customers’ needs and how can we improve?
What is boils down to is, “what does my consumer think of my brand, my product and themselves in relation?”
Attitudinal Research and Buyer Personas
Sales and marketing departments are increasingly relying on the concept of buyer personas.
“Buyer personas (sometimes referred to as marketing personas) are fictional, generalized representations of your ideal customers.” HubSpot
Your marketing team needs to understand who they’re marketing to, and your sales team needs to understand who they’re selling to. Both need to know the concerns your customers might have, and how your product or service can alleviate those concerns.
When working to build your buyer personas, it can be difficult to figure out where to start – this is where attitudinal research can really help paint a clearer picture. You can look at your current customers’ behaviors and ask them questions about why they chose to buy.
Once you’ve worked out how your customers think, you can begin to create brand messages that target their attitudes and attitudes of similar people you are prospecting to buy your product or service.
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