How To Get Product Development Input From Your Target Market Via Your Social Media Pages

By on March 7, 2011

One of the best things about social media is that your community can keep a conversation going long after they have left their computer – via mobile devices like their iPhone or Blackberry.

Basically it means that if you ask the right questions, or use your social media accounts in the right way – you can gather a lot of information very quickly about a specific subject, or say – a product you’re about to launch.

Even after you have launched that product, you can gather free market research that will help you develop that product into a future best seller. All it takes is a bit of imagination, and a lot of interaction. Here are some great ideas for you.

1. Create Facebook Surveys

Think of Facebook as a giant room, where 600 million people like to hang out on a daily basis. Imagine if you could get 1% of these people to give you feedback about your new product. You can!

All you need to do is transform a traditional Facebook advert into a survey invite. The ad will direct the reader to your survey page or app, and you can gather the info they leave for you there. All you need to do is hone in on your target market.

2. Use a LinkedIn Group For Feedback

Because LinkedIn is a business network, people love to help you with honest feedback on this platform.

Leave a message on an appropriate group, or on your business group – and ask people to comment on or assess your product. What can you do to improve it? How should you market it? Who should your target market be? Your LinkedIn network will give you all of these answers and more.

3. Create a Blog Post For Your Blog

Spend some time putting together a thoughtful blog post that urges your readers to give their opinions on the product you are about to sell. You could even run a little competition to encourage feedback – and hand out a few products for free.

This is especially effective if you need feedback on a digital product that is easy to transfer online. Some of your readers might even be willing to write reviews for you if you send them your product for free.

Encourage honesty – if they have negative things to say about your product, its better to hear them now than to wonder why your product isn’t selling later on.

4. Use Twitter To Monitor Your Brand

Once you have launched your product, use Twitter search to monitor any conversation that is happening about it. The hashtag feature will help you to keep up with what is being said about your product, and what you should change about it in the future.

This will also give you the opportunity to engage ‘strangers’ that have bought your product on a social media platform. Ask them a question or two, they won’t mind!

To get adequate product development input from your social media communities you need to constantly monitor your brand and engage people – even if you don’t know them at all. Be prepared for good and bad feedback, and use it all to perfect the product you have. The more you change, the better it will sell!

How do you approach your social media communities when you need product feedback? Let us know!

About John Souza

John Souza is founder and chief strategist of SMMU and Social Media Impact, and is a bestselling business author. He won the 2011 Tech Marketing Awards ‘Social Media Marketer of the Year’ and most recently the About.com Reader’s Choice Award for Best Online Education Site. John has appeared on The Michael Gerber Show, and his business has been honored at the Mashable Awards, Forbes Business Awards and The Stevie Awards.
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