Using Data Studies to Elevate PR Results
Data studies can do wonders for your brand—positioning your company as a valuable resource and industry thought leader to reporters, customers, prospects, analysts and other influencers. Whether you are using internal data sources or an external survey provider, it’s important to take a systematic approach. Otherwise, you will waste valuable resources and discredit your data.
There are a variety of survey providers that provide a range of services at different pricing levels for data studies. At the top end, companies can hire highly credible industry analysts like Forrester Research or Gartner to conduct consumer research. Or you can use a more affordable provider and simply pay per completed response. The provider you choose will depend on your goals and budget.
Types of Data Studies
There are several different approaches companies can take to conduct a data study that adds value to your PR and marketing efforts:
- Consumer Survey: You can uncover valuable insights on consumer perception and new trends with a consumer survey. To be statistically relevant, you need to collect at least 200 responses. You must construct your survey effectively and avoid confusing audiences with too many questions or complex response options. Otherwise, you will not receive meaningful data and it will be difficult to generate enough survey responses.
- Business-to-Business Survey: While consumer surveys are relatively cheap, surveying business-to-business audiences like CIOs or CMOs can be more expensive. As you become more targeted with your survey audience, the cost investment will increase. However, highly targeted B2B surveys can gain significant traction and be well worth the investment. It’s important to understand your audience, the media landscape and information you hope to uncover before determining which approach is best for your company.
- Data Aggregation and Analysis: In addition to consumer and B2B surveys, you can conduct a study by aggregating and analyzing existing data. Whether it is a collection of internal data based on a statistically relevant sample size of your clients’ anonymous data or an assessment of census data as it relates to the current economic climate, you can collect and analyze existing data sets and package them up as an informative white paper and study.
After identifying your goals, target audience and industry’s news landscape, you can determine which approach is best for your brand. And you are not limited to only one option—you can conduct a variety of data studies throughout the year as part of your overall PR and marketing strategies.
To determine which strategy will be most effective for your brand, conduct in-depth competitive and market research. This will help you understand the types of surveys already out there and make it easier to differentiate your data. Even if you are leveraging internal research and statistics for your study, prior research will enable you to identify a unique angle and generate more media coverage.
Next Steps for Creating PR Data Studies
At Walker Sands, we regularly conduct and execute data-driven studies. Depending on the topic and audience, our clients achieve significant amounts of media coverage and content opportunities as a result of data studies. If you are ready to leverage data for a business and marketing advantage, call us today at (312) 235-6171 and learn more about our services.