Market research is available as a service to help any company, service provider, individual or organisation make better, more informed decisions. The more research is embedded in the strategic plans of a firm, the better equipped it is to deal with the changing environment within which it operates. Here is a list outlining the main benefits of investing in marketing research:
- It helps businesses strengthen their position. Knowledge is power. Use market research to gain a better perspective and understanding of your market or target audience and ensure that your firm stays ahead of the competition.
- It minimises any investment risk. This is a simple but vitally important and often business critical consideration. Spending what is often only a small proportion of your investment on researching and testing the market, product, concept or idea makes sound business sense.
- It identifies potential threats and opportunities. Both primary research (fieldwork) and secondary research (desk research) can be utilised as an insurance policy against both obvious dangers on the road ahead. Coupling this with some qualitative research for deeper probing can highlight certain opportunities or warning signs that may otherwise have been missed.
- It helps to discover your’s and your competitor’s strengths and weaknesses. It’s vitally important to adopt an ‘eye’s wide open’ approach to any market research project which is why it’s often advised to work with a market research agency to ensure completely unbiased reporting. Use research findings to adapt and learn from your own weaknesses whilst capitalising on your new-found knowledge from competitor analysis to take advantage and forge ahead of the pack.
- It facilitates strategic planning. What is the foundation of your business strategy? If it’s evidence based and you’ve taken the time to invest in your own (and hopefully ongoing) research, you can be confident that you’ve given yourself the best chance to achieve your business goals.
- It helps in spotting emerging trends. Staying ahead in business is often about being the first, being the best or doing something that no-one else has thought about. Regularly taking the ‘pulse’ of what’s hot and what’s not in your industry is a key discipline. Speak to your research agency or research consultant about the range of techniques you can employ to spot and exploit these trends.
- It assists businesses to stay ahead of the competition. Being the best demands a relentlessness to keep getting the basics right combined with a curiosity and willingness to innovate. Knowing how to leverage the findings and insights you extract from market research, audience research and data research are the keys to both getting ahead and staying ahead.
- It provides revenue projections. A market forecast is a core component of a market analysis projecting the future numbers, characteristics, and trends in your target market. Potential customers can then be divided into segments. You want to focus on the best market – which is not necessarily the largest one or the market with the highest growth – it will be the one that matches your own company profile.
- It focuses on customer needs and demands. There are so many important reasons to keep your customers at the centre of all that you do in business and the same goes for research. With so many ways to reach customers using online panels, web communities, telephone survey’s, depth interviews and focus groups, market research keeps you attentive to where you can improve your proposition, customer service or product offering.
- It helps to evaluate the success of a business against benchmarks. A PWC survey found that companies that benchmark achieve 69% faster growth and 45% greater productivity than those that don’t. Use market research for competitor research, employee engagement surveys, and to highlight performance or knowledge gaps and areas for potential growth. This will open your company up to thinking about new methods, ideas and tools to improve your business effectiveness.
Find out more…
If you’re interested to find out more about the many techniques and research methodologies that are available to you, then check out our introduction to market research.
How to avoid common market research mistakes…
To help you avoid some common market research pitfalls, we’ve put together a list of the most common market research mistakes and how to avoid them!
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