Importance of Market Research
Remember back when you were in the 5th grade and your teacher said “We have an important history quiz on Friday, make sure you study.” If you were like any other kid, you probably spent the next 5 minutes trying to convince yourself that you know the material like the back of your hand and that you don’t need to study. Taking an honest look back at the times you studied for the exam vs. not studied, I would assume the times you studied benefited you academically as well as your free time (avoiding being grounded for bad grades). Market Research is just like studying for an important exam. Except this time, if you forget to study you may lose your job. Market Research is sometimes an overlooked step in the marketing/innovation process but if we can learn anything from our 5th-grade selves, we would recognize its importance. Still not convinced you need Market Research? Let’s look at a few more reason why:
It’s All About The Money
At the heart of “why do Market Research” is the underlining goal of “make and save more money through informed business decisions”. If you’re looking at Market Research as an expense vs. an investment, you’re looking at it the wrong way. Market Research simply enables you to make more money. Isn’t that what we all want right?
Confidence/Informed Business Decisions
Have you ever been assigned the task of launching a new product or campaign? If so, you’ve probably felt the overwhelming pressure of uncertainty. Authenticating your product or marketing plan before launch can have significant impact on your confidence and the success of the endeavor. Plus, if your boss calls you up to their office and asks you to explain why you made a certain decision, you have data-backed information to support your case. Without market research there is a risk that consumers do not need or want the product, or do not like it or the way it is packaged and presented.
Don’t believe me? Ask Ron Johnson, former CEO of JC Penney, how launching a brand initiative without Market Research turned out for him. Well, you may have a hard time finding him at JC Penney to ask him because he’s no longer there. Johnson decided to change the position of the JC Penney brand on pure instinct rather than incorporating any Market Research. I bet he won’t make that mistake again.
Market Research enables you to see your product/brand/service from your customer’s point-of-view. Sometimes marketers need a reality check. All too often marketers rely solely on instinct and gut feelings; and make decisions that are detrimental. Unfortunately, Ron Johnson learned this the hard way. Market Research gives you a much needed reality check and eliminates any personal biases from your decision making. As much as you think you know about what your customer wants, you don’t really know until you’ve viewed things from their perspective.
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