How To Do Market Research
Market Research Basics
Market research is really important if you want your business to succeed, unfortunately many new business managers fail to do what is termed as proper market research, the dedicated business minds do, but those who don't really take their new businesses seriously fail to do the necessary market research in the preliminary business start up stages.
To identify potential problems within your business early on can make your business go from strength to strength as can the patterns of your whole marketing be worked out by focused research into your market. On the whole though, there are three main areas to concentrate your market research in:
- Your competition
Competitors are worth knowing about, because they have done all the work before you, so it is a good idea to try and see how they have got to where they are and emulate them slightly and try to identify weak areas in their own marketing, try and see what they don't do more of and beat them at it.
Also to have a wealth of knowledge on your top competitors may give you an advantage of any future joint venture partnerships that could grow both your business and theirs, many of the prominent top businesses in the world, partner up with relevant businesses to combine their marketing might
2. Advertising and marketing methods
You need to know what marketing and advertising methods you are going to concentrate on and plus the ones that will benefit your business online or off, you'll find that there are some marketing methods that you will excel at and others that you will drag your heels with, but it is really just about throwing yourself into it and seeing what works for you. I tend to be more better at article marketing and video marketing, social media marketing is an acquired medium that takes a good strong network to be really effective.
Also with advertising, you need to know what you are spending and how to manage that cost with budgets and cash flow and that is possible with keeping a keen eye on your cash finances as all good business owners should.
3. Future business growth
Having goals to attain is what a business is all about and if you don't achieve what you want, you have to look at what you are doing again, constant evaluation of you efforts is needed to see if the things you are doing are correct, this is a more intense market research method that you do need to examine carefully.
If things don't work out, you have to determine why? and if there are any other elements that you can dig into your promotional efforts, then these will make themselves clear at this point, goals and aims become something to study and out of this comes success.
How to do market research is really about looking at stats, sales figures and leads and finding out on a regular basis how these conversion factors originated and this has to continue for the life of the business, so as to examine seasonal trends and any spikes in website traffic or sales for any given month, your cash flow will help you estimate your growth, but it doesn't compare to the actual doing side of business, the take action approach that many fear.
Other market research studies that you could do in advance stage of your business is customer questionnaires or surveys which will help collect feedback and information that you could analyze and find out some realistic expectations of your business and valuable feedback that will help you change your business suited to the customer.
If you have a website, you will and should use a web stats package that will help you determine lots of factors like where your visitors come from, what keywords they used to get to your site and what is popular on your site. Having a website can be fun at times, because you can alter it at anytime and add new content with ease, making it more search engine friendly, the more you add new pages or content to it and effective market research should reflect both online and offline efforts, but documented separately, so as to distinguish the source of leads and sales etc.