In this guest post, Stella Hulott, from PR consultants, Speedie Consultants (www.speedieconsulting.co.uk), explains how the use of surveys can really add benefits to your PR service, giving you the edge over your competitors, and your customers the perception of lots of bang for their buck!

People love stats – it gives weight to any news story or article as well as justifying eating that daily bar of chocolate*or, having that cheeky glass of red wine.**

Research is quoted everywhere – scan through your daily newspaper or a magazine; look at adverts on the TV or online, and you are guaranteed to find several references relating to a new study or survey.

Just type the word “research” into Google News and you’ll get thousands of results, all news items referring to studies carried out by companies and organisations.

This is great news for you if you are a PR agency - you can create a release that really has something of interest in it, giving you the potential to reach wider audiences - and making your client happy!

Why surveys?

Having auditable data means:

  • you can quickly piggyback off current news stories;
  • provide credence to your  / your clients’ offering (for example, if you sell motor insurance online, did you know that it is the most popular product bought using the web?); 
  • the research can be interpreted in different ways, making it reusable depending on current news and views; 
  • all reputable media who use your data will quote the company who carried out the research as a resource – giving you / your client free name awareness.

Surely surveys are expensive and take a lot of time to organise?

In the “old days” surveys used to involve a lot of time, effort and, not unusually, money, in order to get data that you could work with. Now, with the advent of companies offering DIY survey technology such as Usurv.com, carrying out research can be:

  •  very quick (I’ve had results within ten minutes before);
  • cheap (survey prices start from as little as £10 – we spend an average of £50 per customer); and
  • delivered in easy to understand formats (charts and spreadsheets that have the data broken down in to age, gender, income and even percentages – great for someone without a head for figures like me!)

The surveys can also be geographically targeted, too, if required.

Getting as much bang for your buck – case study

While we use this DIY survey technology for our clients who require PR and research, we also use it for other areas of our own business too, as it so cost-effective.

As an example, we carried out a survey studying the habits of people buying insurance online, to see where brokers could improve on their online offerings.

For the cost of one £50 survey:

·         we had enough data for three bits of PR;

·         we used the snippets of data from the survey in an infographic – so, more useful content and another bit of PR;

·         we also used the data for Tweets and other social media platforms; and, finally

·         the survey provided enough useful and relevant information to produce a downloadable report for brokers, adding value to our website as well as capturing email addresses.

We truly believe these surveys offer real value for money - from just one survey and one piece of PR, you have the potential to get lots of media coverage and name awareness, from many different sources, on and offline.

Certainly, Usurv.com has made a real, positive difference to the PR side of our business and I cannot imagine being without it now.

 

*Daily Mail quoting research carried out by Harvard University in the U.S (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-3728/Eating-chocolate-good-you.html)

** http://news.health.com/2013/02/20/is-red-wine-good-for-you/

Perhaps unsurprisingly, around half (49%) of the nation think they’ll be worse off after the 2013 Budget. But a third still believes no single party on their own could do better than the coalition according to Usurv’s snap poll conducted hours after the Chancellor’s Budget speech yesterday.

In fact just 14% believe the Tories could manage the economy better on their own and even fewer (4%) support the LibDems governing alone.  This is well behind the numbers who think UKIP (22%) or Labour (27%) would do a better job acting on their own.

The general mood of the results (which you can see here) is of gloomy resignation. Even the penny off a pint of beer cheered only a few people  - with less than a third agreeing it was a good idea.

Inevitably people look for a scapegoat when things are bad.  But we’re being quite fair with George Osborne with 40% saying he’s performing as well as possible under the circumstances.

Some people still begrudge those top income earners though.  When they were questioned about who would benefit most from the Budget nearly a quarter (24%) pointed to higher rate taxpayers – perhaps as a result of the previously announced reduction in the top rate of tax from 50 per cent to 45 per cent.  Though 10% of those earning over £40,000 per year believe it’s the unemployed who gain most.

What’s your view? – let us know through the comments section.