A successful business never underestimates the power of market research since a strong foundation of success can only be laid out if you know who your customers are and what they need. With the use of reliable market research software, you can gather meaningful customer feedback which ensures that your business decisions are not just the product of your gut feeling.
Small businesses need market research as much as the established ones. In fact, small businesses are in greater need since they have no room for error. However, the benefits expand beyond just risk elimination and decision making. Find out how market research for businesses influences their growth and success.
Understand Your Customer Better
Strong customer relationships in every business lead to long-lived success and building strong customer relationships is possible only if you know your customers in and out. Positive word-of-mouth is the best marketing tactic which works only by offering customer experiences that stand out. And the key to delivering excellent customer experiences? In-depth market research.
Here’s how you can conduct market research to know and understand your customers better:
- Use customer feedback surveys to know your customers’ likes and dislikes.
- Encourage customers to participate in focus groups to know how they interact with your product.
- Engage with your audience on relevant social media channels to know what it is talking about.
Create A Brand Positioning Strategy
Market research helps in creating a fool-proof branding strategy which is based on the consumers’ perceptions of the brand. It helps you find out who your audience is and where you should target your marketing efforts. Moreover, finding out what your consumers think of your brand as compared to your competition gives you an edge over others.
Example: Chipotle, an American chain fast food restaurant, took their branding game a notch higher by printing clever jokes on their soda cups to attract their young audience. This gave Chipotle an edge over its competition, Taco Bell.
Follow these steps for a sure-fire branding strategy:
- Identify if your target audience is aware of your brand.
- Choose the right advertising approach.
- Select the media placement that will engage.
- Develop a compelling communication plan.
- Gather customer feedback on logos, brochures, websites, advertisements, etc.
Understand Your Competition
Even if you are offering a product that serves a huge need of your audience, it might die out if your competition does it better. Running your own business requires staying on the lookout for what is being offered in the competitive market. This not only helps you set competitive prices of your products or services but also helps you avoid mistakes that your competition has made.
Here are a few things your market research strategy must be based on while evaluating the competition:
- It must asses both the key players as well as those on the rise.
- It should take into account your competition’s strengths as well as weaknesses.
- It should be able to recognize your competition’s failures and the cause of their failures.
- It should be able to specify areas where you have an advantage over your competition.
Identify Areas of Opportunity
Judging whether a new product or service will connect with your audience will increase the chances of success manifold. Also, establishing whether or not a new product or service will appeal to your customers helps you align your product with the expectations of the marketplace. This area of market research also sizes up the market competition to ensure the likeliness of success. So, here’s what should be considered:
- The need of your customers
- Customer demographics
- Market size
- Industry dynamics
- Major industry suppliers
- List of competitors
Market trends keep changing with the changing needs of the customers. And, in order to remain successful, it is important that you match your pace with the changing market trends since staying relevant is the key to success. Also, researching and analyzing the evolving needs of your customers helps you stay innovative and ahead of the game.
Reduce Financial Risks
Apple had a momentous flop in 1933 when it introduced a bulky Apple Newton handheld PC device. Since the people weren’t ready for it and the starting price was $700, the brand made a huge mistake of thinking that it would take the world by storm.
This gives us a huge lesson that the success of a product or service depends on whether consumers will accept it. Unfortunately, many businesses invest huge amounts of money on new products based on just their gut feeling. But, good market research helps you calculate the potential success of a product, and hence, reduces the probability of failure.
Identify Threats And Opportunities
Market research allows you to not just gauge your competitors, but also helps you identify your potential threats. A threat, in business terms, isn’t just a similar brand, it can also mean evolving situations or trends that may work against you. In-depth market research helps you forge ahead of the pack by steering clear of the trends that may soon die out. Or in the worst case, helps you stay prepared while your competitors struggle to emerge out of the situation.
Market research has many benefits that lead directly to the growth of a business. It helps businesses stay in-trend and setting realistic targets that are more likely to be accomplished. And this is the reason, the leaders in various industries rely on market research software to make the research process quick and the research data-efficient and reliable. So, create a research strategy and get going.
Author The Author: Bhavika Sharma is a survey designer at SurveySparrow, where she designs surveys that work by making them more conversational and engaging, fetching 40% more responses. When she isn’t designing killer surveys, she loves to travel in search of adventure and to meet new people. Her travel experiences have taught her the importance of conversation and that is what she brings to the table while creating surveys or content for her readers.