Today’s co-host is Adrienne Barnes, a content strategist and audience researcher specializing in the B2B SaaS industry.

Most clients Adrienne works with are terrified of bothering their customers. They hate to be calling and asking and bugging, but the reality is, people want to share their experience with a product. In fact, as we speak, Adrienne’s calendar is fully-booked with customer calls. As Adrienne puts it, thinking your customers don’t want to chat is a self-limiting belief – don’t succumb to it!

In this episode, we bust other audience research myths, unpack how to own our audience by asking the right questions to the right people, and outline the number one question Adrienne asks to uncover golden nuggets and crack a marketing research conundrum.

“A lot of it, if we’re just gonna get real, boils down to shame or embarrassment. People feel like their product didn’t meet the mark, their tool was wrong or bad or whatever the case may be. But that’s not the case at all. The case is, somehow, somewhere along the line, we attracted a poor fit. And I need to know why. What did we do, what was the message we were sending out, the signal we were sending out, that told these people that this was gonna be the tool for them?” ~ @adriennenakohl

Main Takeaways

  • Sometimes the only way to catch blind spots and stop customer complaints is to sit down and chat with someone who’s actually purchased your product.
  • The first step is figuring out who to reach out to from your audience. Adrienne typically separates a customer base into three segments – the ideal customer, the average customer, and the unhappy customer.
  • Third-party researchers are more effective because they’re often better listeners. When you work at a company, you’re more inclined to offer up solutions or otherwise attempt to fix a customer complaint. Refusing to empathize shuts down a conversation almost immediately.
  • A common research myth is that it takes endless time and money to understand an audience.
  • In a conversation, ask customers _why_ at least five times. This helps them dig deeper and often leads to golden nuggets about customer experience or ineffective messaging.
  • Links and Important Mentions

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