Market Research for start-ups – Would anyone be interested in this?
Hey everyone, just wanted to run something past people and see what they thought. I see in a lot of books, forum posts and websites that poor market research and surveys/questionnaires on potential customers and product uptake before people start up businesses is a huge reason behind a lot of businesses failing. People don’t do enough research, don’t check or pre-validate their ideas, or the primary research they do is of bad quality, biased or poorly executed. This is where I think I could help. To explain further, I’m a market research manager and consultant with over 7 years of experience running and managing all kinds of primary research from small 5 question online surveys to huge international studies implemented on phone, telephone and online.I hold several qualifications in the subject and spend my days consulting on and running businesses surveys. I realise that there may be a good market in helping others to conduct their research better so that their results are more robust and help them to make better decisions, which could ultimately mean the difference between success and failure at startup To this end, I wanted to check whether people would think this would be a good venture – whether people could see some benefit to either doing this as a small, personal consultancy or by writing an information product/ebook to help those people who are starting up get the very best results they can. The benefit to people would be a highly personalised service, one to one consulting and a cost way lower than they could get at a traditional market research agency. Sorry for the essay explaining it. Any constructive critism would be great. Thanks
I’m interested in having help in my market research for my company start up. I haven’t got any funding at the moment, but would be interested when I have funding.
Thanks for replying to the message and letting me know you may be interested in some of the consultancy we could offer,
At the moment, as this is an unproven service, albeit one I am sure would add considerable value to your market research, I would be happy to help you for free since it will allow me to get more experience in this area and see the type of service that people may need.
If you’d like to know more, feel free to let me know how I could get in contact, preferably by email and we can go from there.
As you said you have been a market research manager for 7 years and you are thingking of offering marketing research as a small personal personal consultancy. You have chosen a timing better than any other as Internet Marketing is just simmering to the brim. You should find plenty of would be interpreneurs online and they could use much needed help on marketing research. The rates you can charge may not be as big as when you get corporate accounts though but you can quickly add up to your revenues by atrracting as much customers as quickly as possible. This book is a prime example – The Customer Magnet by Michael Cheney.
Why bother with market study? any person who’s ever worked through a enterprise design understands the answer to this one. Trying to start a little business without researching your potential market is as shrewd as setting out for the North pole with a surfboard.
But market research isn’t just certain thing you do when you’re working on your enterprise design and then shelve. Market research needs to be an integral, ongoing part of your enterprise’ development.
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I do understand the value of knowing your customer, although you would be surprised just how few startups have something as simple as a tracking script on their website. Adequate tracking and split testing can really help.
I have set up a few of my clients with Adwords Remarketing which allows you to change your sales strategy based on the visitors behaviour on-site. I realise this is not the market research you are talking about, however with knowledge and ability, you can do a lot of it without the need to actually interact with your visitors.
To your question, yes there is a lot of value in it (for me), the difficulty is in (objectively) proving the value to businesses who already have hundreds of other outgoings.
I think this is a key topic and am inclined to agree with London Guy that Start Ups don’t do enough market research… This often comes down to resource or the perception that the research won’t be particularly valid.
For me, the survey type approach has a key limitation. Namely, that there are no consequences to a hypothetical question…. in other words, if you ask a simple question like ‘would you buy product X’ then saying ‘yes’ does not oblige the responded to actually purchase! Perhaps it is better to test market where possible (?)
However, I think the key reason a start up business should conduct research is simply the benefits that you get from going out and looking the customer in the eye – it builds confidence and you tend to learn a lot (even if it’s different from what you set out to learn)
Thanks for raising an interesting topic.
Mark Taylor www.eriskay-associates.co.uk