If you are an entrepreneur, chances are you have thought about how to market your product and what kind of marketing practices you should be using. Marketing is vital to getting your product known around the world and helping your business grow to its full potential.
Regardless of what your business is about, marketing is a vital part of the process. You can always take advantage of and benefit from good marketing. You can do traditional marketing through methods such as postal mail ads, billboards, and articles.
But these days, there have also been newer practices, such as digital marketing. This type of marketing includes social media, targeted ads, email ads, b2b marketing, and blog posts. In addition, it is fully done online.
However, before investing or diving straight into what type of marketing you should be doing, you must perform market or consumer research. This is important, especially if your company is new to the playing field or you are launching a new product of yours. This will help you know where and how to start your marketing strategy.
What is Market Research?
Market research is the process of evaluating whether a new product or service is feasible or not. This is done by conducting research directly with the business’s potential consumers. By doing market research, a company or business will be able to find out who its target market is, know what their opinions are, and make decisions based on these findings.
Companies and businesses usually outsource their market research work to market research facilities that know more about how to properly and effectively conduct it. These market research companies then deploy surveys, get sample groups, interview these groups, and much more. It depends on what your product is and what your goals are.
With market research results, companies and businesses usually find out the audience’s reaction to their new products and services. They can also find out what they need to improve on. With this data, they can also tailor their next steps in marketing and advertising to their consumers’ needs.
What are the Stages of Market Research?
Market research is not a one-step process but a series of stages a marketer must follow in order to get accurate and reliable results. As an entrepreneur, you must be familiar with these stages of market research, especially if you are planning on conducting your own research without the help of market research companies. Here are the stages of market research that every entrepreneur should know.
1. Identify and Define the Issue
Before pursuing market or consumer research, you must first think about what your goal for your business is. Maybe you want to attract more customers. You might want to increase your sales. Depending on your goal, your market research strategy must be tailored to it.
A good way to identify or define your issue would be to ask questions. “Why are we doing this research?” is a good place to start. You may come up with more depending on your answer to this question. You will then be able to determine what problems you are facing and their causes.
After defining the issue, you will now be able to determine what kind of information or data you will need to collect. You will also find out from whom you need to collect this data. This now leads us to step 2.
2. Develop Your Market Research Program
Once you have identified your issue and who you must collect data from, it will be time to develop your market research program. Your strategy and methods largely depend on the previous step.
You will then have to determine your method of inquiry. You can use a subjective method and base your research on quantitative analysis, or you can use an objective method that uses qualitative research, customer opinions, and personal opinions. Your end goal for your research will help you decide what to use.
The question of what type of data collection you will do is what you have to answer next. You can opt to do a consumer survey, a consumer observation, experimentation, and more. Market research companies can help you reach a large sample size for more accurate results.
3. Gather Your Data and Information
Gathering consumer data and information from your research is the most vital part of your work. This will affect what steps you need to take in order to improve your business and solve your problems.
You can outsource this part to the best online market research companies, as this part can be tedious if you do it alone. It is vital that you get data that is unbiased and impartial. If you do not get this kind of data, your research may be useless and your actions will be ineffective.
4. Analyze Your Data and Report Your Findings
Once you have your data and information on hand, you can do data analysis in order to properly read your data. Raw data from consumer research in marketing usually makes no sense if read individually, and data analysis will help provide meaning to your results.
A good data analysis makes use of the trends and statistics that it finds in your data and lays out a good story. It can show you the current state of your consumers and your problem and provide you with a clear outline of what your next steps should be.
It is best to write a report on your whole market research process for documentation. This can be used in the future if you or other businesses need a reference to conduct more market research.
5. Make Research-based Decisions and Put Them Into Action
After analyzing and making sense of your data, you can now make decisions based on your findings. With your new-found knowledge, you can start developing your actual marketing strategies. Even if you already have a solution, you should be cautious because it is only temporary.
Trends and consumer perceptions will always be shifting. And there is always a need for market research every now and then in order for your business to stay relevant. You should be aware of trends and consumer opinions at all times, and your willingness and action in conducting market research can make a difference.
As an entrepreneur, knowing how to conduct market research is vital to carrying out your marketing strategy. There are five basic steps to market research, so be sure to follow all of them to get your desired results. We hope that you learned a lot from our article, and good luck with your future market research!