Over the past decade we’ve used community panels and pop-up communities in hundreds of different ways to deliver smarter, more agile and impactful insight for our clients. Here, Andrew Cooper shares 20 of the best. 1. Explore the lives of your customers: gathering real-time, authentic stories about their life experiences - shared via images, links, video, voice and in person. 2. Learn how your customers’ lives and perceptions have changed over the last 12 months: repeating attitudinal or segmentation work to see what’s shifted. 3. Use deep dive activities to build trusting relationships with select groups of customers and gather in-depth information on sensitive, difficult or challenging subjects. 4. Use your community panel to quickly explore issues identified in CX tracking programmes, understanding what drives a specific response and what you should be doing about it. 5. Develop greater clarity about the path to purchase by integrating transactional data, device data from your customers and exploratory research. 6. Screen product and service innovation ideas: establishing where you should focus your energy in 2020. 7. Take your best ideas and turn them into product or service blueprints. Use co-creation and customer feedback to help you “build it before you build it”. 8. Fine tune offerings, creating compelling propositions that stick. Identify warm targets, address pricing and bundling or clarify your positioning and messaging. 9. Track how your products and services perform after they’ve launched, identify areas for improvement and opportunities for new product and service development. 10. Develop and test written communications, ensuring customers understand what you want and/or need them to take out. 11. Make your work more targeted: invite people based on who they are, what they think and what you know they do. 12. Create and test live mock-ups or BETA versions of new propositions in a controlled environment, using customers to enhance them before launch. 13. Develop and test multi-media communications via a range of interactive tools ensuring customers see and hear key brand messages. 14. Use purchase data to identify how research results relate to in-market performance – then follow up with customers who didn’t purchase to find out why. 15. Give ‘new life’ to NPS or CSAT tracking with a monthly video question and customer voice showreels. 16. Use your community panel to adopt a more iterative working style: link multiple methods and pause-analyse-reflect then add new tasks in response to feedback. 17. Use push notifications or time/event/location triggers to make the most of smartphones as the best research tool for understanding how people interact with brands in the modern, digital world. 18. Create tailored templates and processes to work in a more agile way, freeing up more of your time to think about and share insight with the business. 19. Communicate better: plan outputs from the start, tailoring content based on different stakeholder needs and using images, links, voice and video to interest and engage the audience. 20. Run customer immersion sessions with stakeholders to build genuine understanding and empathy with how customers live, experience and interact with your brand.