Informational interviews are tool you can use to learn about something and help inform decisions you may need to make. For example, if you are considering going into an civil engineering field, you may consider interviewing somebody in that field to find out what they had to do in order to get their first job in the industry. You may also ask about the kinds of things they do on a daily basis. Finally, you may consider asking about salary and how much time they are required to put into their job each week at work as well as away from work.
The interviews can also be used to determine if you should enter a market or not. For example you may want to interview potential customers about their preferences for specific services or products and learn if the ideas you are considering are viable with that audience or if they are even needed. The idea behind the interviews is to gather information to inform you and help make decisions.
But how do you find people to interview?
The easiest thing to do is talk to people you know, initially. You may say you are interested in learning about a specific topic to your fiends and they may be able to refer you to somebody who is known as an expert in that field or who is already working in that area. You could also go online and search for people who are in that area of interest.
If you are looking for people for a specific demographic, then you can do a little asking to see where people from that group congregate. Where do they meet? Do they have regular conferences they go to? Are there other places where you may be able to find them?
Finding places where people gather for niche markets is pretty easy. For example, finding the place where the people who play third edition D&D should be pretty straight forward. The harder part is finding the place where mid-level business executives interested in data analytics go, that is more challenging because they could be going to any number of conferences or meetings. The key is finding the networking events they attend, and the best place I have found for those are in Meetup and events like 1M Cups.
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