Best PracticesMarket Research

Market Research Results & Audience Retention: Lather, Rinse, Repeat

Lather, Rinse, RepeatThe final presentation, when we deliver market research project results, feels like a huge accomplishment. The project is finally done! Or is it? Alas, our goal is not to deliver the results–it is to make sure our audience actually uses them.

As we consider the audience’s needs, bear in mind learnings from the education and training sectors. Sharing MR results is essentially training people to apply new information. What lessons from these other sectors can we apply?

  • Repetition is important. Just like when we’re teaching kids how to spell, practice makes perfect. The first time people hear information it has a certain amount of impact, but if they hear that information two or three times it greatly improves retention.
  • Multiple modes are important. We’re more likely to retain information if we read it, hear it, and see it in visual displays like graphs and charts. Better still, if we get to apply it through practice quizzes, role-playing, or other interactive exercise. In contrast, if we only read something, we retain far less.

What does this mean? It means we can’t just email out a research report and assume the project has now been delivered. If we expect people to retain and apply research results, we have to create a more comprehensive delivery strategy. Presentations, email follow-ups, executive endorsements, podcasts, custom follow-ups, 1:1 briefings, posters, and internal blogs are some of the options that can be combined to make sure we reach our audience multiple times using multiple modes. Lather, rinse, repeat.

[Want to learn more about delivering a market research project’s results? Check out our 34-minute, flash-based class “How to Package and Deliver Market Research Results for Maximum Impact” available online now.]


Kathryn Korostoff

Kathryn Korostoff is founder and lead instructor at Research Rockstar. Over the past 25 years, she has personally directed more than 600 primary market research projects and published over 100 bylined articles in magazines. She is also a professor at Boston University, where she teaches grad students how to analyze and report quantitative data.

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