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How To Build An Online Insights Community

August 11, 2021

Insight communities are a type of customer engagement platform that brands use to gather actionable data on a large scale. These platforms engage customers over a prolonged period of time to create detailed user profiles and gain invaluable customer feedback on products, services, marketing campaigns, and more.

Whether your brand is new or established, learning how to build an online insight community can be an important part of your market research strategy. Online insight communities are especially relevant in fast-paced industries, healthcare companies, and other companies that may lack a strong research culture yet see the value of using data to make key business decisions. At their best, communities offer a range of research methodologies including surveys, focus groups, and other approaches.

Reasons to Build An Online Insight Community

Companies choose to build a consumer insight community for numerous reasons. Here are just a few common motives:

        • Better understand customers 
        • Boost customer loyalty
        • Improve the customer experience
        • Build brand allegiance
        • Assess policies and issues
        • Identify whitespace for new products and services
        • Understand brand perceptions
        • Improve web and customer experience design
        • Enhance the path to purchase
        • Concept development and assessment
        • Ideation and iteration of new ideas
        • Better understand big data

7 Steps to Building An Insight Community

Building a successful insights community requires extensive research, planning, and expertise – yet it need not be daunting. Here are seven steps to help get you started:

        1. Identify key stakeholders for the online community
        2. Define the purpose and goal
        3. Select a community platform
        4. Build a member profile
        5. Develop rules and norms
        6. Set up your community and recruit members
        7. Promote your community to ensure participation
        8. Field research via the community and analyze/socialize the data

Common Mistakes In Creating Online Insight Communities

Brands that are new to insight or marketing research communities may face some obstacles in the process. These are some common mistakes to avoid with your insight community:

        • Underestimating resources required
        • Underestimating the learning curve for building an insight community
        • Overestimating support level from legacy or less focused research partners 
        • Not investigating research acumen of partners
        • Underfunding 
        • Misunderstanding the community’s purpose

What Costs Are Associated With Building An Insight Community?

Creating an online insight community requires an upfront investment. But—when done right—the return on investment far outweighs the initial costs. These are some of the expenses to consider before building an insight community.

        • Recruitment of participants
        • Customer incentives to participate
        • Technology for the platform
        • Research funds (conducting surveys and analyzing data)
        • Community management (answering customer questions, IT support for the customer dashboard, etc.)

Build Your Insight Community with FinchSight

Many brands tend to underestimate the costs and resources required to build and maintain a successful insight community and conduct the research itself (surveys, focus groups, etc.). If you’re wondering how to build an online community that delivers a significant return on investment, FinchSight can help.

Our next-generation insight communities blend the expertise of the nation’s leading brand consultants with the latest technology to give you a more powerful research engine. We build larger sample sizes and take the work off your plate to give you a more efficient investment. We are experts in selecting and deploying learning methodologies and applying the data to support key business decisions. 

Contact us today to learn more about how FinchSight can help you achieve your research goals.

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