Every year, we end up with the same task. Do a quick update of every annual tracker and get it into field – now! But really, a quick update should actually be a careful and thorough update. By ensuring the data quality is great, we also ensure that any business decisions arising from those data are great. With that in mind, here are seven tips to get you closer to collecting great quality data from your trackers this year.
- Fix Errors: You may be hesitant to change anything in your questionnaire, whether that means improving weak instructions or drastically altering the order of questions. However, it’s far worse to knowingly track inaccurate numbers than to continue adding baseline norms that don’t reflect reality. The goal must first and foremost be to obtain accurate data from which to develop sound business decisions.
- Add Competitive Brands: The competitive playing field changes faster than ever. Whether your brand has been on top for years or is striving to make the top twenty, trackers must reflect the current competitive space. Check every brand list in the questionnaire to determine whether new competitors need to be added. It’s easier than ever now for brands to easily rise through the ranks and appear out of nowhere.
- Remove Questions: You know that question you’ve done nothing with for the last five years? The one you barely even glance at anymore? Delete it! As attention spans get shorter and shorter, it’s your responsibility to help participants reserve every ounce of available attention for important questions that need to be as accurate as possible. Don’t question it. Just cut it.
- Prepare for Technology: Remember when automation and artificial intelligence were pure fantasy? Well, the times, they are a’ changin’ and automation and artificial intelligence are affecting everything in the consumer landscape. Make sure your tracker is forward looking enough to account for product advancements that technology like artificial intelligence and augmented reality will bring to the market. Plan for those new baselines and start measuring them now
- Reconsider the Target: Have you always targeted brand users? Now is a good time to take a good, hard look at who ought to complete your survey. Maybe it’s time to take advantage of online panels to include completive users or non-users in the mix. Make sure you can track growth of the category and know precisely how your brand fits into the mix.
- Prepare for New Cohorts: We’ve learned so much about Millennials in the past few years that many of us are sick of hearing about them. Well, maybe that’s good. It means you can start thinking about whether your tracker is prepped to meet the expectations of Generation Z, people born from 1995 to now. The oldest Gen Z consumers are 22 years old now and they know nothing but digital. If your tracker doesn’t include digital shopping channels, even for products that seemingly can’t be shopped for online, you’re way behind the game.
- It’s Mobile or Nothing: And since we’re talking digital, don’t think for a second about designing a questionnaire for desktop computers. You need to make sure that every single question on your questionnaire renders beautifully on mobile phone screens. While you’re at it, you might even consider whether they will render well on a wrist screen like an Apple watch or Fitbit device. Maybe you can’t read a watch, but Gen Z isn’t wearing bifocals just yet.
We’d love to help you get started on a new tracker, or help you update your existing trackers. Please get in touch with us!
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