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B2B Market Research: The Two Types for PR Campaigns

By David Beesley

B2B or Consumer Research?

Defining the type of research to suit your target market PR strategy

We have always been a fan of data-driven news and incorporating this tactic into your PR campaign strategy. Have a skip through our blog archive and you will see topics such as Impress your boss with data-driven PR and Using PR Market Research for your communications campaign.

Incorporating market research into your PR strategy can be crucial for campaign success as it helps position your company ahead of your competitors.

Creating your own Market Research project is a great way to provide data-driven news and give your corporate spokespeople a unique take on a topic, giving your business insight into an audience and an edge over your competitors.

But when it comes to building a PR campaign that includes market research what are the options?

In simple terms, there is Business-to-Business (B2B) or Consumer research.

Using B2B Research in your PR campaign

Knowing the pain points and frustrations of your target audience is content gold! Not just for PR, but also for Marketing and Sales. If you have defined your target audience for your marketing campaign (and I sincerely hope you have) then this can be used as a profile that defines a research sample as part of a B2B Market Research campaign.

  • Work in FinTech and want to target finance leaders in organisations with over 200 people? Sure!
  • Work in CyberSecurity and want to target CIOs or IT Directors in businesses with over £10m in annual revenues? No problem!
  • Work in Business Operations and want to target Owners, Founders, CEOs, and Entrepreneurs that run organisations from 10 - 500 people in the UK, EMEA and USA? Let’s go!

Having a clear understanding of your audience and applying that profile to a research sample will give you confidence that the results are credible and a true reflection of the challenges/issues they are experiencing, as well as providing a comprehensive competitive landscape analysis.

You might argue that you know that you don’t need to survey the industry because you already survey your own customers on key issues/challenges.

Aside from the obvious navel-gazing aspect of this, will your customer data stack up enough to be used as part of a PR campaign?

The validity of your customer data needs to stand up to statistical analysis and validation to be used for PR. I’m not talking about the tag lines that we’re all familiar with such as “99% of our customers love our product!” and then hidden in the small print is a line that says “4 out of 5 people agreed with our view as part of this study”. What I am referring to is - is your sample size large enough to minimise and compensate for any variations? Typically, in B2B research this would need to be a minimum of 200 people.

Then there’s the fact that some businesses don’t want to publicly share the customer feedback/insights that they are receiving. This is perfectly understandable - but it doesn’t help your PR campaign.

Commissioning an independent research house to conduct a B2B survey gives the results credibility, allowing you to reach a wider, more diverse sample that is a true reflection of the industry as a whole and frees up your team to focus on the outputs of the research.

Market researchers play a crucial role in ensuring that the data collected is accurate and representative of the industry.

Your B2B market research will provide never-before-seen insights into target markets and/or industries. By understanding your customer’s needs and preferences, you can tailor your PR campaign with messages that resonate with your audience. Most importantly, B2B market research gives your PR campaign data-driven news, enhancing the credibility of your key spokespeople and positions them as true thought leaders.

Using Consumer-based Market Research and Consumer Behavior for B2B PR Campaign

What’s that? Consumer research in a B2B PR campaign? That doesn’t make sense because you’re not interested in what consumers think, you want to know what your customers think. 



There is a place for Consumer research in B2B PR Campaigns because they provide you with an understanding of consumer behaviour and your customers' customers. If you can clearly articulate that you understand the problems and issues that your customers, customers are facing, you can position yourself as the solution to those problems. Helping your customers to deliver to their customers.

This works well in industries like Retail, Cybersecurity, Marketing and even Intellectual Property Law! NB* all proven projects that we have been involved with.

For consumer market research projects, you will need a larger sample audience to get a national representative. For example in the UK, it’s widely regarded that a sample size of 1000 people is needed.

For larger territories such as the USA, then 2000 responses is a good base-level target to 


Anything under those numbers begins to impact the statistical validity of responses and therefore doesn’t provide an accurate representation.

Consumer market research can help in developing effective marketing strategies that resonate with your target audience.

For more information on sampling sizes, this is a worthwhile read.

Consumer market research offers detailed insights into behaviours, preferences and trends. Understanding the target audience of your customers, customers gives you the unique topics to create content that will resonate with your own target customers.

Using consumer market research as part of a B2B PR campaign enhances the relevance and effectiveness of your content and the spokespeople behind it - building stronger brand awareness, trust, and loyalty amongst your target audience.

Which Market Research option is right for your PR campaign?

This is where you need to seek the advice of an expert. Either a research house expert that has a proven history of delivering consistent market B2B or Consumer research insights or a PR partner that can guide you through the process.

I would advise choosing both options if this is the first time you’re going to perform market research.


A market research company will ensure that your questions are constructed properly and the answers are consistent with the key objectives of the research. A PR partner will stop you from asking questions that only support your sales team, and instead provide the perfect blend of creating great news headlines AND sales/ marketing collateral.

If you get it right, a market research project can support your PR, Marketing, Sales and Social Media for up to six months.

Monitoring industry trends is essential to ensure your market research project remains relevant and provides actionable insights. So the next time your CEO proposes to dump upwards of £50K into Gartner or Forrester - ask yourself whether there is another way to use that investment to generate more value.

Tags: News, PR, Digital PR, ITPR