Launching products or services into the market, or entering new markets, can be extremely nerve-wracking. Will your target audience be receptive? Will your offering serve as the solution to their problem? There’s always a possibility of things going completely wrong. But imagine if there was a way to minimize the risk of failure — a way you could ascertain that your products or services will accurately solve the problem of the people you’re trying to serve. Well, market research is the answer to all your worries!
Market research is the systematic process of collecting, analyzing, and interpreting information about your target market that’ll help you make informed decisions. This includes understanding your:
- Customers—their wants, needs, and pain points, so that you can better serve them.
- Competitors—what they offer and how it differs from yours so that you can set yourself apart.
- Community—the cultural, religious, and socioeconomic factors that exist within the environment
Through qualitative or quantitative data, market research can help you make informed decisions, improve upon existing products or services, and even attract new investors.
Let’s take a look at some of the most important benefits of market research.
1. It Helps You Better Understand Your Customer
Market research can provide you with valuable insights into who your customers are, where they can be found, and what their wants and needs are. This will inform important decisions such as:
- How many resources, such as time and money, should go into developing new products or services
- How to interact with your audience on a regular basis based on their preferred channels for accessing information, e.g. social media platforms or print media
2. It Can Help You Create New Products and Services and Improve on Existing Ones
The best way to uncover gaps in the market that can benefit from new products or services, or identify whether there’s a need or want for the new product or service you have in mind, is through market research. Your findings will show you what’s going to work and what won’t before you even launch your offerings into the market.
As for improving your existing products or services, your customers are key. They can shed light on how they currently use your offerings, what they wish was different, and what they expect to see in the future. This information should guide your design process. By understanding the things that are frustrating and annoying about your offerings, you can address them in a way that makes your customer’s experience enjoyable for them.
3. It Can Give You a Competitive Advantage
Your competitors, and their offerings, will help you find out whether your business is falling behind when it comes to innovation. Is there a product or service that your competitor offers that you don’t? Does it pull your existing and potential customers towards them and push them away from you?
Market research can help you better position your product or service. Positioning is about how you want your product or service to fit in the market and how it’s perceived in comparison to your competitors. Market research can help you identify what alternatives your customers have to your products or services so you can highlight what sets your offerings apart from the rest.
4. It Can Help You Develop More Effective Marketing Strategies
Through market research, you can find out where and how your potential and existing customers consume content. Whether you use traditional marketing channels such as tv and newspapers, or digital channels such as social media networks and websites, you can create and distribute relevant content that resonates with your target audience and drives them to take an action.
5. It Can Reduce Risk and Cost
It can be costly to launch a product or service into the market that doesn’t meet the needs or wants of the people you’re trying to serve. You might find yourself spending more money to rework your offerings, hiring extra customer support staff, and increasing your marketing campaigns in an effort to fix the mess.
Market research is a great way to test new ideas, products, or services, without fully committing to it. It allows you to ‘try before you buy’ and gauge whether customers will be interested in what you are offering. With market research, you can avoid making expensive mistakes by understanding what your customers are looking for and ensuring that your products or services meet those needs.
6. It Can Attract Investors
When it comes to attracting investors, market research plays a big role in helping you get their attention. Investors want to see that you’ve done your homework and have a clear understanding of the market. For them to give you their money, they need to trust that your company, and the products or services you want to offer, has a sustainable success rate.
It’s important to note that market research is not a one-and-done activity. You need to consistently conduct research in order to stay on top of your customers and how their wants, needs, and pain points evolve over time. Reach out to us today via email at email@example.com and we’ll help you conduct market research so you’re never left guessing again.