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Trend Research: Going Beyond Public Data to Give Your Product an Edge

Is relying solely on public data enough to truly understand your market and give your product a competitive edge? While public data certainly offers a wealth of information, it may not always provide the unique insights needed to differentiate your product effectively. That’s where trend research methods come in.

Take for example a B2B software company specializing in CRM solutions. Insights from public data shows a rising trend towards cloud-based software. But to truly set their product apart, they dig deeper and conduct trend research, starting with client interviews and surveys. They discover demands for AI-powered features that enhance customer engagement.

Armed with these insights, they invest in a next-gen CRM platform, integrating advanced AI capabilities and industry-specific modules like predictive analytics and automated lead scoring. Tailoring the solution to the client’s users needs, they launch a cutting-edge product, gaining market traction, attracting new clients, and solidifying their position as industry leaders.

This highlights how delving deeper with trend research beyond public data can give your product a vital advantage. Let’s delve into these methods, which can provide valuable and actionable insights, distinguishing your product in a competitive market.

Trend Research Methods for Insights Beyond Public Data

There are many ways to get detailed trends in sights that go beyond what is found in public data.

Let’s delve into some of them, such as using exclusive data sources, investing in primary research, conducting brand tracking and consumer surveys, applying advanced analytics and machine learning, participating in social listening and social media analysis, as well as networking at industry events with experts.

Leverage Proprietary Data Sources

Proprietary data sources, such as CRM data and customer feedback, are often underutilized but can offer deep insights that public data cannot. Here’s a closer look at how these sources can unlock valuable insights that public data alone cannot provide:

CRM Data– By analyzing customer relationship management (CRM) data, you can uncover a wealth of insights into the purchasing patterns, preferences, and behaviors unique to your customer base.

From frequency of purchases to preferred products or services, CRM data offers a granular understanding of your customers’ interactions with your brand. This information can inform product development strategies, personalized marketing campaigns, and customer retention efforts, ultimately leading to more targeted and effective business decisions.

Customer Feedback and Surveys: While public data may offer broad insights into market trends, it often lacks the specificity needed to address the nuances of individual customer experiences. This is where customer feedback and surveys come into play.

By regularly engaging with your customers through detailed surveys and feedback sessions, you can gain a deeper understanding of their specific pain points, preferences, and emerging needs.

Unlike public data, which may only provide a snapshot of market trends at a given moment, customer feedback allows you to capture real-time insights directly from the source. Whether it’s uncovering areas for product improvement, identifying new feature requests, or gauging overall satisfaction levels, soliciting feedback from your customers can provide invaluable guidance for shaping your product development roadmap and enhancing the customer experience.

In essence, while public data offers a big-picture view of market trends, proprietary sources like CRM data and customer feedback can offer micro-level insights needed to meet evolving customer needs.

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Invest in Primary Research

involves direct collection of data rather than solely relying on pre-existing datasets. It can provide a deeper understanding of consumer behaviors and preferences.

  • Primary research: By leveraging primary research methods such as focus groups and field studies, businesses can gain in-depth insights that go beyond what public data alone can offer:

  • Focus Groups: Focus groups involve bringing together a small group of individuals to discuss specific topics related to a product or service. This interactive setting allows businesses to delve deep into consumer perceptions, opinions, and preferences.
  • By facilitating open discussions and probing for insights, businesses can uncover valuable information that may not be captured through other research methods. Focus groups come in handy when you’re trying out new or complex product ideas.

  • Field Studies: Field studies involve observing consumers in real-world settings as they interact with a product or service. This method provides businesses with a firsthand understanding of how consumers use their products in everyday life.

By observing consumer behaviors, challenges, and preferences in context, businesses can gain practical insights that inform product design, marketing strategies, and customer experience enhancements. Field studies are especially valuable for identifying areas for improvement and innovation.

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Use Trend Research Surveys for In-Depth Insights Beyond Public Data

Surveys are a powerful tool to gather deep insights beyond what public data can offer. By leveraging surveys in scientific research, brand tracking, and consumer tracking, you can obtain nuanced information that helps give your product a competitive edge. Here’s how you can use surveys effectively in each area.

Surveys in Scientific Research

Scientific research often requires precise data that can be gathered effectively through well-designed surveys.

  • Conduct Original Studies: Design surveys to collect primary data for your research. Ensure your surveys are comprehensive and methodologically sound to yield reliable insights.
  • Collaborative Research: Partner with academic institutions or research organizations to create and distribute surveys. This can help you access a broader audience and gain more diverse insights.
  • Longitudinal Surveys: Use surveys to track changes over time. Longitudinal surveys can reveal trends and shifts in consumer behavior or market dynamics, providing a more detailed picture of emerging trends.

Brand Tracking Surveys

Surveys are crucial for understanding how your brand is perceived and how it compares to competitors over time.

  • Brand Perception Surveys: Regularly survey your target audience to gauge their perception of your brand. Questions can cover brand awareness, trust, and overall satisfaction.
  • Competitive Analysis Surveys: Conduct surveys that ask consumers to compare your product with competitors. This can highlight your product’s strengths and weaknesses relative to the competition.
  • Customer Feedback Surveys: Collect feedback directly from your customers about their experiences with your brand. Utilize this data to pinpoint areas for product enhancement and innovation.

Consumer Tracking Surveys

Surveys allow you to gather detailed information about consumer preferences, behaviors, and purchasing patterns.

  • Customer Satisfaction Surveys: After a purchase or interaction, send surveys to understand customer satisfaction and identify areas for improvement.
  • Market Research Surveys: Use surveys to explore consumer needs and preferences. This can help you identify potential gaps in the market and opportunities for new products or features.
  • Trend Analysis Surveys: Regularly survey your consumer base to identify emerging trends. Questions can focus on changes in buying habits, product preferences, and lifestyle shifts.

Why it works: Surveys for consumer tracking provide real-time data about your customers, helping you stay ahead of trends and adapt your products to meet evolving consumer needs.

Utilize Advanced Analytics and Machine Learning

Advanced analytics and machine learning can help you discover hidden trends and patterns within your data. Here’s how:

  • Predictive Analytics: By using predictive analytics, you can anticipate future trends based on historical data. This approach allows you to make informed decisions before trends become widely recognized.
  • Natural Language Processing (NLP): NLP can analyze vast amounts of unstructured data from sources like social media, customer reviews, and support tickets to identify emerging trends and sentiments.

▶️ Take a look at this video to see how you can use machine learning and artificial intelligence to swiftly analyze and interpret customer feedback in just minutes, rather than spending months with traditional analysis methods.

Engage in Social Listening and Social Media Analysis

Social listening involves monitoring social media platforms and online forums to track conversations around your industry and products. Want to know how it can benefit you?

  • Get a deep understanding of your customers, know what’s trending in your market, and find out what your competitors are doing.
  • Analyze keywords, hashtags, and user-generated content to spot trends as they happen.
  • Gauge public sentiment to understand how people really feel about products or services like yours.

Use all this information to give your product and brand an edge in the market. Use a brand tracking tool to make sense of it all and outpace your competitors.

Network at Events and Collaborate with Industry Experts

Networking at industry events and collaborating with experts can offer invaluable insights and perspectives. These interactions not only keep you updated on the latest trends and innovations but also allow you to anticipate shifts in the market and stay ahead of the curve.

Expert panels and advisory boards can serve as invaluable resources, providing guidance and strategic direction that can significantly enhance your product development and overall business strategy.

Networking at these events can open doors to new opportunities and partnerships, further fueling growth and innovation.


You need to dig deeper than just public data if you want to really understand your market and make your products shine.

Trend research uncovers all those hidden insights such as subtle consumer preferences, up-and-coming trends, and needs that aren’t obvious from the surface. By putting resources into trend research, you can unlock actionable insights that fuel innovation and make your products stand out.

Whether it’s adding cool new features, making user experiences exceptional, or staying one step ahead of the competition, trend research is the compass that can guide you towards success in today’s ever-evolving market.

Trend Research FAQs

What is trends research for product development?

Trends research for product development involves analyzing emerging patterns, behaviors, and market dynamics to anticipate future consumer needs and preferences. It helps businesses innovate and tailor their products to meet evolving market demands.

Why is trends research important for giving products an edge?

Trends research provides valuable insights into shifting consumer preferences, technological advancements, and market trends. By leveraging this information, businesses can develop products that are ahead of the curve, differentiate themselves from competitors, and meet the evolving needs of their target audience.

How can trends research go beyond public data?

Trends research goes beyond public data by delving into niche markets, conducting consumer surveys and interviews, analyzing industry reports, and monitoring social media and online discussions. This comprehensive approach allows businesses to uncover insights that may not be readily available through public sources alone.

What is market research survey?

A market research survey is a method used to gather information and insights from a target audience about their preferences, opinions, and behaviors related to a product, service, or industry.

Why are surveys good for market research?

Surveys are effective for market research because they allow you to directly collect feedback and data from your target audience. This aids in grasping customer preferences, spotting trends, and making informed choices about product development.

Why it is important to study consumer behaviour before launching a product?

Studying consumer behavior before launching a product is crucial because it provides insights into the needs, preferences, and buying habits of the target market. By understanding consumer behavior, businesses can tailor their products, services, and marketing efforts to meet the specific demands of their customers, thereby increasing the chances of success.

What are market research survey questions?

Market research survey questions are inquiries designed to gather specific information from respondents about their opinions, preferences, experiences, and behaviors related to a particular product, service, or industry. These questions are structured to elicit valuable insights that can inform business decisions.

What is marketing positioning analysis?

Marketing positioning analysis is a strategic assessment of how a product or brand is perceived by consumers relative to competitors in the marketplace. It involves evaluating factors such as target market perception, competitive positioning, unique selling propositions, and brand differentiation to determine the optimal positioning strategy for maximizing market share and customer appeal.

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