How To Conduct Market Research For Business Clarity and Profitability
When you finally decide on your business idea it can be tempting to jump right in. You want to start to sell your product or service and you might even want to move on to marketing your business (what I think is the fun part!). But there is a step before you can jump in to help you not only gain clarity but to make sure your business will be able to make money. This step is market research. By seeing what is out there, you can start to see where the gaps are in the marketplace and what you could offer.
I think the term market research is a bit deceptive. It’s not about going into a library and studying the history of your industry although there is some basic research that you could conduct. I think the most important part is talking to real people and seeing what they are struggling with.
When To Do Market Research
When you have your idea but your product or service is not selling well. There is likely a gap in the way that you are communicating your offer, who you are marketing to or the positioning of that product or service is off.
Another great time is when you want to come out with a new or different product or service. You do not want to spend time, money or resources on developing a product that is not going to sell.
There are essentially 3 steps to conducting market research.
Step 1: Internet Search
Step 2: Interviews
Step 3: Positioning
Lets dive in a little deeper into each of these areas.
Step 1: See what else exists
This is the easiest step its really just using Google.com or Alltop.com to see what else is out there in your area of expertise. Facebook Groups have also become a big resource for seeing what else is out there since many business owners are starting their own Facebook Groups to market their businesses. If you can find forums that is another great resource for finding out what people are still needing help with.
Step 2: Interviews
Next, you are ready to see what people are actually saying. Where I see a lot of people go wrong here is that they will create surveys. I am not a fan of surveys especially in the beginning because it does not actually encompass everything about a person’s struggle. In other words, you don’t get the full picture. There is also another inherent problem with surveys, people tend to not be 100% honest and transparent. This puts you in a very bad place if you decide to rely on this data for the purpose of growing your business. The very best thing you can do is actually talk to people and have a real conversation with them. See what they are up to and listen.
So now you have interviewed a few people and feel confident that you can help them…now its time to work on your positioning.
Step 3: Positioning
Next, you will be positioning your offer. This is super important because if you do not communicate this well, then people will not want to buy from you. This part is about refining your message and getting crystal clear on what you sell and how you are different than all of the other options. This is my favorite part of working with my clients inside the Become A Client Magnet Intensive because it allows us to draw on what you are already great at and what you want to do and we can create a unique position for you allowing you to become the go-to resource in your area of expertise.
In summary, when you are looking to start a business or expand your products and services you want to start with market research. Market research is all about understanding what’s out there, what people want to buy, and how your offer uniquely fits. And really this piece of listening to what people want is never really “DONE” in business because you will, some day, want to come out with a new product or service and will want to make sure that you are customizing it to your ideal clients. Lastly, remember that your positioning is very important and there will likely be others providing the same or similar products or services to what you offer. That is why it’s important to eliminate the competition by creating a unique positioning for your service or product. I would love to help you with this inside of the Become A Client Magnet Intensive.
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