“Market research is a way of getting an overview of consumers’ wants, needs and beliefs. It can also involve discovering how they act. The research can be used to determine how a product could be marketed.”

Question: Have you ever wondered what market research really is and why is it so important that it is actually a necessity for all businesses? Let us share what we believe in:

知己知彼,百战百胜
Know your enemies and know yourself; in a hundred battles you will never be in peril.

This strategy was from The Art of War by Sun Tzu & it is the most accurate description of how market research functions.
Read more here: http://www.suntzustrategies.com/resources/six-principles-of-sun-tzu-the-art-of-business/

It emphasizes on the importance of the market movement, the culture, your competition before you enter a new market.

Why was Sun Tzu’s strategies so popular?
1. Sun Tzu came up with so many strategies in his time to fight his battles and for most of it, has been translated in ways that we can work on it on a business level.
2. The tactics is relatable for businesses. Each strategy tells you a certain area of your business – and though traditional, you are able to use these strategies and modify them to your advantage.
3. Because it is useful for almost everything you want to embark on, even for self.

Know your enemies and know yourself; in a hundred battles you will never be in peril.
Let’s try to break this down: if you do not know who are your competitors, how would you know how to position yourself? Would you prefer to stay neutral? Or would winning meant a lot more to you? Knowing who your competitors are, helps to identify your positioning in the market. It will give you an idea of how to set your goals, and how to achieve them in the fastest possible way. Do not overlook these details. You might be surprised at how most competitors work together to attain a bigger goal.

What is market research?

Market research is any organized effort to gather information about target markets or customers. It is a very important component of business strategy.

Market research is one of the key factors used in maintaining competitiveness over competitors. Market research provides important information to identify and analyze the market need, market size and competition. Market-research techniques encompass both qualitative techniques such as focus groups, in-depth interviews, and ethnography, as well as quantitative techniques such as customer surveys, and analysis of secondary data.

Market research, which includes social and opinion research, is the systematic gathering and interpretation of information about individuals or organizations using statistical and analytical methods and techniques of the applied social sciences to gain insight or support decision making.

Types of market research

The main ones that people do as a kick starter:

– Primary Research

– Quantitative Research

– Qualitative Research

– Secondary Research

Primary Research

Primary research involves the collection of original primary data. It is often undertaken after researchers have gained some insight into an issue by reviewing secondary research or by analyzing previously collected primary data.
You can do it through: Questionnaires, surveys, poll

Quantitative Research

Quantitative research is often contrasted with qualitative research, which is the examination, analysis and interpretation of observations for the purpose of discovering underlying meanings and patterns of relationships, including classifications of types of phenomena and entities, in a manner that does not involve mathematical models.

Qualitative Research

Qualitative methods examine the why and how of decision making, not just what, where, when, or “who”, and have a strong basis in the field of sociology to understand government and social programs. Qualitative research is popular among political science, social work, and special education and education searchers.

Secondary Research

Secondary research (also known as desk research) involves the summary, collation and/or synthesis of existing research rather than primary research, in which data are collected from, for example, research subjects or experiments. In a market research context, secondary research is taken to include the reuse, by a second party, of any data collected by a first party or parties.
You can do it through: Searching the internet, buying data

How do you use market research to your advantage?

1. Based on the above explanation, use one which you think you need it for. There are many types of researches that you can do. But what we would advice is to do your own business model canvas before embarking on this.

2. You can use the above to come up with the following:

– Competitor Analysis

– Market Segmentation

– Market Trends

– Risk Analysis

– Consumer Behaviors

– Culture

3. It depends on which phase of your business you are in before you use these services.

When do you need it?

At any one point of time if you require clarification:

1. Before you embark on your business

2. When the business is operating

3. After a campaign has completed

All of these analysis will help you to track and improve on your business. For example: if you require research before you embark on your business, first identify which category your business falls under. If your business falls under F&B, then what you would require is understanding consumer’s behaviour to the different kinds of food or a consumer’s behaviour in coming out to a retail outlet to try a new food. When you require to find a location, what is the demographic of the location? Who are the people who will be willing to spend the money to come to eat the food at your outlet? Who are the pay masters? How many of the same outlets are in the vicinity? Who are you up against? What is the rate of the organic crowd? And the list goes on. Simple things such as rental rates will require a certain amount of research.