Advantages of qualitative research using social media

Have you ever joined a focus group? How did you feel when knowing you were observed by a group of hidden people (behind the mirror) and were “controlled” by a moderator?

I have a friend, who joined many focus groups and she told me she did it just because of the rewards. She sometimes did not answer the truth about what she was thinking because of her discomfort feeling of doing so. The fact that, besides significant advantages of a traditional focus group, this method takes time of respondents because they have to travel to a technical room and join a conversation under the instruction of a moderator. That may make interviewers uncomfortable. So in some cases, they were not willing to answer questions honestly.

Fortunately, social media research offers marketers an advanced way to conduct market researches by following communications trends in society.

Firstly, it allows brands to gather insights about their different customers such as lifestyle, purchase behaviour,  and demographics broadly.  Furthermore, social users can actively and comfortably share their opinions by commenting, sharing, liking, etc. on a post without worrying about being controlled. They do not need to “show” their face by using any avatars when joining a social life. Hence, their opinions are more genuine than the traditional focus group. They will be a valuable source for markers to understand the behaviours and attitudes of customers deeply. Respondences also do not need to spend the time for traveling to any locations in the settled time. They can share their ideas anywhere, any time they like.


Brand Lay’s potato chips has just launched a contest on a Facebook asking U.S fans to help create a flavor for its next chips which will be launched next year to celebrate the 75th anniversary. This contest is a huge opportunity for the brand to gain insight from customers about what kind of chip flavors they love. Gaining insight in this way is efficient and effective. It can do cross countries. The fact that, Lays brand organized the contest in 14 different countries and collected more than eight million opinions about chip flavor.


Courtesy: Lay’s potato chips

Secondly, social media allows collecting data with a sample size bigger than any focus groups. Marketers can get feedback straightforwardly from customers with a few clicks. Hence, information is always fresh and up to date. While with a focus group, marketers have to spend considerable finance and time (maybe a week, a month or even a year) to collect information. And when the report is done to use, it may become old already.

Another benefit of social media is to make direct connections between brands and consumers. For assistance, businesses can send products to consumers and then ask them to share their opinion on their social channels. By analyzing their feedback on social media, marketers can gain insights from customers to prepare for the better performance.

In conclusion, social media has created innovate opportunities (and challenges) for businesses. It is bringing businesses a great chance to collect information and to connect with audiences in the way that traditional focus group cannot. Marketers should optimize this method to gain genuine insight before making strategic decisions to reduce risk and increase return on investment for businesses.



5 Ways Social Media Takes Customer Relationships To The Next Level. (2012). Retrieved from

Shadpour, D. (2018). How Social Media Can Serve As The New Focus Group For Your Brand. Retrieved from

Photo courtesy of Lay’s Facebook page





Growing your online brand community on Instagram


Welcome back, guys! I trust you are well!

Today I am going to talk about how to grow a social media community on Instagram.

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Photo by Pixabay on

As you know, besides Facebook, twister, building an online community on Instagram becomes more popular and is a great way to engage with customers on social media which many businesses nowadays are doing. But once you have a foundation of the social media community, earning this is not an easy job because it is not just as simple as buying followers. It needs to be connected, supported and long-lasting. How to do this? Here are some tips!

  1. Be clear about who you are and what you are doing

Defining who you are and what you can bring to customers is the first thing you need to do on Instagram. It is just a short bio description but can summarise about you and what you offer customers when they follow you. Make sure that your feed should be on the brand when describing what you are doing so that your brand image and positioning is consistent.

  1. Be active to create interaction with customers

You are an owner of the community and they are your guests. Therefore, you should give them a warm atmosphere when joining your community to encourage them to be with you long. How to do this? Ask them questions and reply to their comments.

  • Asking customers questions about their opinions and experience can allow the brand community livelier. Customers want to be asked so that they can share their ideas. They will feel more engaged and involved with the brand when they do that. Placing question in captions so that customers can easily leave their answer in comments. Or you can go Live Q&A to bring customers into the conversation.
  • Reply to customers’ comments is another way to interact with them in the online community. Replying to them as much as you can not only allow customers to understand more about what you are doing but also help to show your respect for their contributions.


(Courtesy: Helloemilie)

Example: Emilie is an Instagram star, photographer and world traveler from Australia. She always replies to her fans as much as she can to create a close connection and show her respect for them.

  1. You are not a robot

You should speak as you would be a friend and let them see your personality. You should not use standard responses because they are cold, lifeless and customers can feel bored. They do not want to talk with a robot as well as do not want to join a lifeless community.

  1. Recompense your community

Last but not least, rewarding your community by giving away something they want. It can be a discount voucher or some small gifts. It is a good way to show how you value their contribution and encourage them to keep joining actively in your community.

I have just shared some tips about building an online community around your brand. I hope it is helpful for you. If you have other tips, please feel free to leave them in your comments and we can discuss more. Thank you and have a good day!


Growing Your Social Media Audience. (2018). Retrieved from

Hughes, C. (2018). Retrieved from

Patel, S. (2017). Retrieved from http://5 Steps to Building a Community Around Your Brand

Photo courtesy of Pexel

Photo courtesy of Instagram account: Hello Emilie

Hey, luxury brands! You are too friendly!🙄

Doing social media marketing for a brand is one of the active ways to get closer to customers. That is why a thousand brands on the Earth nowadays step by step tries to interact with customers on the Internet to make themselves friendlier in customers’ eyes.

But how about luxury fashion brands like Burberry, Louis Vuitton? Is this friendly manner on social media always good for their brand image and positioning?


                  How about luxury fashion brands like Burberry, Louis Vuitton? (Courtesy: Pexel)

According to the fact that, luxury brands are controlled, exclusive, premium, and aimed for a selected group of wealthy consumers. Using a luxury brand, especially fashion one seems to make customers more confident, trendy and to have a feeling of belong to a high-class. Hence, the friendly interaction with customers by responding their posts, and encouraging them to participate in many activities such as mini-games on Facebook is really good for mass market brands but may lower the value of luxury brands in customer’s perception. Particularly, too friendly manner sometimes narrows a distance between mass-market consumers and luxury brands and therefore, it seems hard to drive the desire of owning luxury products to satisfy their needs and furthermore, to enhance their social status. For example, some successful luxury brands which are well-known all over the world such as Louis Vuitton bags or Hermes scarf never give away a gift like a 10% off coupon if you finish an online survey. The reason is that this approach may damage the premium of them.  Also, online contests are rarely held for luxury brands because it may reduce their unique and may lower brand image in customers’ mind.


   Luxury brands are controlled, exclusive, premium, and aimed for a selected group of wealthy consumers
(Courtesy : Pexel)

Consequently, managing a luxury brand requires marketers more careful, and clever in making a suitable social marketing strategy that allows maintaining the dream of customers about a luxury product. In particular, they should create and keep the distance of sacred psychological on social media channel so that value perception of these brands such as status signal, exclusive, and premium characteristics will exit in customers’ mind when they think about them. Furthermore, marketers should avoid over-friendly engagement between customers and luxury brands to prevent them from the think that brands are too easy to approach and access. Gradually, customers will equate the value of luxury brands with mainstream products on the mass market.

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(Courtesy: Louis Vuitton)

Example: Louis Vuitton brand has a Facebook page but it seems just a bridge to link to its official website when introducing new collections rather than to interact with its consumers. It still keeps psychological distance with consumers to raise the desire of consumers about the brand as well as to maintain the brand image.

Have a good day & see you in my next pots! 😉


Digital Luxe: Social Media Strategies for Luxury Brands. (2018). Retrieved from

Godey, Manthiou, Pederzoli, Rokka, Aiello, Donvito, & Singh. (2016). Social media marketing efforts of luxury brands: Influence on brand equity and consumer behavior. Journal of Business Research, 69(12), 5833-5841.

Social media marketing in luxury brands. (2018). Management Research Review,41(6), 657-679.

Park, M., Journal of Business Research (2018),

Photo courtesy of Pexel

Photo courtesy of Louis Vuitton Facebook page