Performing Market Research On A Budget
Conducting market research can give you better insight into your market, and help you create new products, features, promotions and pricing aimed at fulfilling their needs.
Host 1: 00:00 Podcasting from southern California, this is On The Net, your go-to for everything you need to know about how to get your business online and keep it there—brought to you by Lunarpages. We’ll help you navigate the mystifying ins and outs of doing business in today’s digital era. From web hosting to ecommerce to security and protection, if it has to do with your online presence, we’ve got it covered. Let’s get started.
Host 2: 00:31 Hello everyone. Welcome to On The Net, where it’s all about your online presence. Thanks for joining us! This podcast is designed to make doing business online easy for web designers, developers, bloggers and online business of every shape and size. Whether you are new to buying web hosting or running a web site, this podcast show will be able to answer your most burning questions. To start and run a successful business, you really need to know the marketplace you operate in and what your competitors are doing. If you don’t have psychic powers to read your customer’s minds, then you do have to fall back on market research to learn what your potential and existing audience wants, and what you can do to earn their trust and business. Whether you realize it or not, you are in all likelihood continually running market research informally. Every time you talk to a customer about what they want or discuss business with a supplier,
Host 2: 01:22 you are in fact conducting market research. But you also need more formal market research to keep your business growing and also to retain loyal customers. Conducting market research can give you better insight into your market, and help you create new products, features, promotions and pricing aimed at fulfilling their needs. Proper market research should guide your business’s marketing plan and determine the essential details of each variable. We are not talking of complicated statistical models, massive surveys and international focus groups run by market research firms or big budgets here. Even though market research can seem intimidating and hard to pull off on a small business budget there are lots of creative research tactics in every marketer’s toolkit from research surveys and questionnaires to focus groups, phone interviews, competitive intelligence, and structured interviews. But first you must plan your research goals so that you know the kind of data you need to collect and also to find out what your future marketing materials should be.
Host 2: 02:21 Then you need to determine the type of market research method you want to focus on. There are two broad types of market research- primary and secondary. Let’s look deeper into primary research. Primary or original research involves conducting research by yourself or someone contracted by you, to discover answers to specific questions about products and services that you plan to offer. By surveying customers or questioning the competition, you’re gathering information directly from the source and getting firsthand information. For example, a good customer survey is a simple but valuable market research tool that lets you delve into your customer’s head. A formal questionnaire can easily be handed to customers, posted on your site, or emailed to your customer list. Most customers are happy to offer feedback, especially if you give our special coupons to fill out surveys. You can even survey customers via Facebook, LinkedIn, or Twitter to get response and data for market research.
Host 2: 03:20 Then you can move ahead to more in-depth market research survey interviews with selected respondents. While this is an example of a less expensive form of primary research, getting this type of research data can often be time consuming and more costly but it is also more valuable. Secondary research looks at data that has already been gathered and published in order to create benchmarks and better understand the competition. For example, some secondary data sources include government publications, trade journals, general media (PR Newswire) and the like. Remember, every business serves a specific kind of customer and knowing your specific customer has many advantages. You need to gather as much information through both primary and secondary research channels as possible about your target customers. Defining your specific customer will help focus your marketing efforts, improve your approach to building customer relationships and customer service, and also guide your efforts in developing the best products and/or services to sell to them.
Host 2: 04:20 Now there is one other thing we should mention. You can always learn from your competitors. After all, you are not the only business in your industry. Take a look on the internet and around your neighborhood to find out more about your competitor’s business. How are they running their business, what is the quality of products they sell and how are the customers reacting to it? What kind of marketing materials are being used by your competitors? What type of messaging and content is being used by them? Try to identify what’s being done right and wrong, what works and what doesn’t work to get ideas about improving your products or services and also to detect cross-sell and upsell opportunities in your business. That’s all we have time for on this episode of ‘On The Net.’ You can listen online, but you can also subscribe to the podcast on iTunes to get future episodes delivered to you automatically. Until next time, here’s to wishing you all the best with your website endeavors. Thanks for listening and take care.
Host 1: 05:24 Thank you for listening to the latest edition of Lunarpages podcast On The Net. Remember, it’s all about your online presence. If you like what you heard, please share a podcast. Join us next week as we take on another
Host 1: 05:37 need to know topic around doing business in the digital era.
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