What the Heck is Market Research and How Much Does it Cost?

market research

If you are looking for the key to success for your business, you need to set your sights on market research. Gaining a complete and accurate understanding of your target audience and potential customers can be the determining factor to the success or mediocrity of your business. Not only will you provide better service to your customers or potential clients, but you will also have a one up on the competition when it comes to your marketing strategies.

By conducting market research, business owners can determine the feasibility of any business or potential service before committing the time and resources to creating it.

What is Market Research?

Simply stated, market research derives from gathering information about your business or services from your target audience sample to help solve any marketing challenges you may face. Using a sample from your key demographics helps create the most accurate data for your services.

When it comes to market research methods, you have the ability to get as in-depth as you would like or simplistic. Just keep in mind that if you conduct the study through direct-mail services or email, keeping your questions short and to the point will derive the most engagement. You can format your questions into a market research survey, asking questions about a service or potential new business or you can perform interviews and record all responses to data analysis.

Two Types of Market Research Data

When it comes to conducting market research, there are two forms of data:

Primary Information

Primary information is all data that is collected directly from you or your company. You have sent out a questionnaire about your specific services or business to your customers or those that fit into your key demographics. You can also utilize a third party service to collect the data on your behalf.

Secondary Information

Depending on your budget, you may not have the resources to conduct the research yourself. This is when you would use secondary information collected by other companies that offer similar services as you. While the responses may not be specific to your services and business, you will be able to use that data to help better your business. Types of secondary information can be gathered through studies conducted by government agencies, trade associations or other businesses within your industry.

So, How Much Does All of This Cost?

The great thing about market research? The costs can vary depending on your approach and how you choose to conduct the research. This allows you to adapt your strategies based on your budget limitations. Conducting in-person interviews can be one of the most costly options as you will need to employ someone to officiate the interviews and designate a space where this can take place. This can take up time and resources that otherwise can be used for other business. While this may be the most costly option, it can provide to be the most powerful form of market research.

Phone interviews and emailed surveys can be the most cost-efficient options for market research, but engagement will typically fall lower than other method strategies. For these, all that is needed is a script or template to follow and a list of potential subjects.

Spending time and resources before you venture out into a new business venture or product can save you from the potential headaches and complete overhauls in the future. Get to know your existing or potential clientele, and you will offer the best service to fit their needs and wants.

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