How to conduct pre-campaign research

white microscope on top of black table

Questions we want to answer during Pre-Campaign Research

  • Which customer segments I can acquire with least cost, time and competition?
  • Which channel (Google/Facebook/Instagram/etc) can I use most effectively to reach these segments?
  • What are their consumer journey?
  • What are their pain point and consideration?
  • What messaging should I use to nudge them towards purchase?
  • What is the most competitive bid I should set to compete for their attention?
  • How many conversion/leads should I expect to achieve after spending my budget?

Why Research is necessary?

As we had learned in our previous lesson, online content are served and selected based on auction mechanism. That means you are always competing with another business for your customer’s attention. In a lot of ways, digital and the stockmarket has many resemblance. Imagine there are two investors; one is a professional and the other is a shoot-from-the-hip retail investor. The professional carefully analyze the market, pour through statistics and journal to pick his or her stock. The retail investor take a bet. Who do you think will have a greater chance of making a profit?

Why should digital marketing be any different? There are more than 319 individual targeting options on Facebook, that means there are 319^319 possible combination. Casually figuring out the targeting by luck is gonna take a lot of time and money. Where else a professional will know to examine the audience insight, web/app analytic and apply A/B Testing to figure the fastest, most cost effective way to achieve conversion.

Everything is about the Audience

Often I get asked, if they should invest on Google or Facebook. Or how much should they spend per month.

And my respond is always the same:

  1. Define what are your commercial target. How much profit do you expect to achieve from your online sales after 6 months?
  2. Identify which customer segment can deliver that profit for you
  3. Then find the channel, method, message to satisfy the customer segment.

It’s remarkably funny how some are so fixated on a channel that they lost sight of their objective; which is to reach and convert a segment of customers whose need you can fulfilled better than your competition. Let me put it this way, suppose you’re selling reading glasses for the elderly. You love Instagram, but analytics shows your target segment doesn’t use Instagram – even if you have the best messaging, set a very competitive bid on IG; do you think the campaign will be ROI positive?

We will cover the broad strategy for pre-campaign research in this lesson, and follow through with an actual media plan in the next subsequent lessons.


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