According to the latest GRIT results, 83% of research buyers is thinking about starting an Online Research Community or has already done so. Clearly, the method is maturing. And so are the types of questions our clients and competitors are asking. This week, Tom and I gave a full-day workshop on running Online Research Communities as part of the MOAcademy (Dutch center for information-based decision-making & market research). During the workshop, all questions were captured on the Wiki Wall and clustered in different phases of running an Online Research Community.
The past few years we have been giving these kinds of workshops quite frequently. We see a shift in the level of knowledge on running communities that our workshop participants have. As the method is becoming more mainstream and is maturing, so are the questions our clients and competitors have. For example, a few years ago the main question was: Are research communities representative? Today, many researchers already know that it’s not about talking to the average consumer, but about talking to people who are interested & interesting. These members have a high identification with the community topic or brand, which makes them interested in the community. In turn, this makes it interesting for us researchers to talk to them and to become inspired.
Now, people don’t question the basic ingredients of a community anymore. The questions that the market is asking today are about the next phase: How to do it? People start to see that it’s not simply a research tool. It’s about starting a Structural Collaboration with your customers, which is accessible 24/7 and which goes cross-department and cross-objectives. The main questions these days are:
- How can I create buy-in to start a research community within my organization?
- For which type of objectives and questions can I use my community?
- How can I keep all members engaged for a longer period of time?
- How can I keep my colleagues involved in this collaboration?
- How can I create more impact with my community and get more out of it?
Are you interested in learning more about running communities and seeing your questions answered? Contact us!