Market Research on Twitter

05.02.2016 |

Episode #4 of the course How to Validate an Idea by Ryan Kulp


Today is a big deal. We’re finally going to venture outside the inbox and see how your idea fares in the wild, sans expense and the clouded judgment of beloved friends and family.

You were promised an actionable template for completing this task. Below is that strategy, but first, some perspective.

We all hate advertisements. Or do we? Have you ever gone on YouTube to search for a commercial from your childhood? Do you look forward to the Superbowl just for the beer ads?

You see, we don’t actually hate advertisements. We just hate bad advertisements. Victory is awarded to brands that strike a chord, who share something meaningful, who have big ideas.

Nearly every American is familiar with “Got Milk?” and Apple’s 1984 commercial, but do you even remember the ad you saw last night after work? Neither do I.

Sharing a tweet or post on social media is kind of like advertising. The two ingredients? A message and an audience. But whether it’s received positively or negatively is dependent on the chemistry between each of these components. Is it the right message? Is it the right audience?

Since we already know who our target audience is (our survey from Day Three) and have at least a hypothesis of the pain points they experience, we’re now better suited to both a) find them and b) craft the right message. This way, it’s easy to collect customer feedback without annoying people or spending any money.


Introducing: Market Research on Twitter

Twitter is an ongoing conversation between everyone in the world. With a quick search, you can find businesses and people discussing nearly every topic imaginable, and it’s all real-time.

We’re going to exploit Twitter’s real-time protocol to collect feedback for our business idea. If you don’t already have an account, no problem. That’s probably better anyway. We want to accomplish this step anonymously.


How it works:

1. Create a fake Twitter account (setup tips and strategy here)

2. Scrape prospects in your target audience (template and instructions)

3. Use Zapier to automate survey distribution (instructions here)

After following these instructions, you should have at least 10 survey respondents who a) match your target audience and b) have no incentive to encourage a bad idea. You can likely do all of this in less than one hour.


Bonus: if your survey includes an open response text box, you may uncover critical feedback you hadn’t previously considered. Be sure to add this feedback to your one-page business plan (Day Two) for future reference.

Tomorrow, we’ll turn this data into actionable steps for creating an MVP (minimum viable product) of your idea.


Recommended book

“Hackers & Painters: Big Ideas from the Computer Age” by Paul Graham


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