Why Market Research Matters: The Importance of Market Research and How to Get Started
By Dan Perry Market research is a critical piece to a company’s success. Yet many companies struggle with it, or skip it all together. But, if you don’t start with the market, you’ll be out of alignment right off the bat. And this will result in a lot of work with minimal gain. So, what is the proper definition of market research? And how can you conduct it correctly within your organization? Market research provides a deep understanding of your markets, accounts, buyers and users. It helps differentiate your strategy from the competition, and prioritize your accounts. It helps you align your strategy with buyer needs and address user problems with your products. As a result, you can bring your strategy into alignment with the external market. There are four phases to market research.
- Market segmentation—dividing the broad target market into subsets of buyers. These buyers have common needs, priorities and solution options.
- Account segmentation—understanding which accounts will generate the most revenue over the shortest period of time.
- Buyer segmentation—understanding how buyers in your accounts make purchase decisions.
- User segmentation—understanding the market problems that exist for users in your accounts.
- What is the growth rate of our market?
- What industry trends are unfolding in our market?
- What are the needs of the market, and how are they changing?
- How do your competitors go to market?
- What is the life cycle stage of adoption for your buyers?
- Customer interviews with the buyers and users inside your accounts.
- Customer advisory boards.
- Executive mapping to your key accounts.
- Spending time in the field riding along with sales reps.
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