Staying in touch under the Consumer Protection Act

The new Consumer Protection Act is a hot topic at the moment with its implementation on April 1st. Under the new regulations, it is going to become increasingly difficult for companies to communicate with and gather feedback from their consumers. There is however a massive opportunity for companies to stay in touch with their consumers under the new CPA.
This opportunity takes shape in the form of an Online Panel. By creating your companies personal Online Panel you are essentially creating a portal between your company and consumers that have opted-in as willing members.

The reason this is such a powerful tool is because when participants sign up to become a member they provide a wealth of information about themselves such as their interests, lifestyle, media habits and demographics. This allows for the specific targeting of members for the use of aspects such as market research, direct marketing and loyalty programs.

The relationship that is created between your company and its consumers is mutually beneficial. For every activity consumers partake in on the panel they are rewarded whether it is in the form of cash incentives, store vouchers or redeemable points. This reinforces the relationship with consumer as they feel that they are actively empowered in the shaping of your brand in addition to being rewarded for their input. Now more than ever consumers want to be heard and an Online Panel provides a perfect platform to engage with consumer in a dialogue that allows you to tap into customer insights and gain market intelligence quickly and easily.

As many benefits as there are provided by an Online Panel it is extremely important that a large amount of effort is put into the design of an Online Panel. As with Social Media platforms, many companies struggle to correctly manage this engagement with their consumers and more often than not the reason is the relevance of the content to the consumer.

The same rule applies to an Online Panel, if consumers aren't engaged with on a regular basis and with content that they feel is relevant to them the will quickly lose interest. This is why it is imperative that the panel is appropriately designed to meet the needs of the consumer as well as the company managing it in order for both parties to benefit from the initiative.

We would encourage most consumer based companies to seriously investigate the use of an Online Panel as a viable platform to stay in touch with consumers under the new Consumer Protection Act. In our experience an Online Panel provides truly powerful consumer insights that are easily available in a short time allowing your company to be agile and quick in its response to the market.

12 Apr 2011 12:30


About the author

Shaughan Schultz is Marketing Manager at Interact RDT. Click here to email Shaughan.