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Market Research and Your Company

Posted on March 23 2016 | Author: Alexander Lazier

The advent of advertising was here. The date is November 2nd, 1920 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and the first radio advertising licence had just been purchased. While undeniably monumental, early advertising lacked the direction and precision which market research would eventually facilitate over the decades to come. Early marketing managers would simply create and advertise with the optimism that readers would be influenced through the information provided. However, it was not until Harvard psychologist Daniel Starch pioneered the first market research firm in the mid-1920s that quantifiable data was utilized in supporting serious company strategies.

Nearing a century later, market research has evolved into a pillar of corporate strategy. With increasingly precise technologies and algorithms with abilities to collect information on the most specific of demographics; effective businesses have rooted themselves in high-level market research.   

Though broad in terminology, market research is defined as “The action or activity of gathering information about consumers' needs and preferences.” The current mediums of which this information is identified and interpreted include:

Market information

  • Being cognisant of applicable commodity prices on the market
  • Recognition of supply and demand situations
  • Understanding social, technical, and legal aspects of market

Market segmentation

  • The division of the market or population into subgroups with similar motivations
  • Division allows for deeper analysis of geographic differences, personality differences, gender differences, demographic differences, technographic differences, use of product differences, and psychographic differences

Market trends

  • Identification of patterns in the market
  • Ability to forecast events which have bearing on profit, production, and market value

SWOT analysis

  • Written analysis of the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats (SWOT) to a business

Marketing Effectiveness

The measure of marketing ROI through the means of:

  • Customer analysis
  • Choice modelling
  • Competitor analysis
  • Risk analysis
  • Product research
  • Advertising the research
  • Marketing mix modeling
  • Simulated Test Marketing

How can your company benefit from Market Research?

As mentioned by the Canadian Government, the goal of conducting market research is to equip businesses with the information needed to make informed strategic decisions on innovation, growth, and the 4 P's:

  • Product — Improve product or service based on findings reflecting customer wants and needs. Focus on features such as function, appearance and customer service.
  • Price — Set a price based on popular profit margins, competitors' prices, financing options or the price a customer is willing to pay.
  • Placement — Decide where to set up and how to distribute a product. Compare the characteristics of different locations and the value of points of sale (retail, wholesale, online).
  • Promotion — Figure out how to best reach particular market segments (teens, families, students, professionals, etc.) in areas of advertising, publicity, social media, and branding.

In summation, by conducting research on a regular basis, businesses keep up with the market dynamics by pre-emptively adjusting to new regulations and technological breakthroughs. While intuition through experience can prove helpful at times, it is research and facts that paint the more accurate picture of your company’s market.


Sources
Diaz Ruiz, C. A. (2013). Assembling Market Representations. Marketing Theory 13 (3): 245–261.
Drucker, P. F. (1974).
 Management: Tasks, Responsibilities, Practices. Australia: Harper & Row. p. 864.
Government of Canada. (2015). Market research and statistics. Canada Business. Retrieved: March 16, 2016
Pauline M., Mark T., Barbara S., Michael S. (2009) The SAGE Handbook of Marketing Theory. SAGE Publications. p. 61-82.

Photo Sourced
Best Finance. (2015). How to Choose a Currency for Your Offshore Bank Account. Retrived from: bestfinancenetwork.com/tag/banking-services

 

Alexander Lazier
Market Intelligence Specialist
Bioenterprise Corporation






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Thinking of expanding to new markets? Consider this first!

Posted on March 04 2016 | Author: Admin

Thinking of expanding to new markets? Here’s what to consider before taking the leap

Expanding into a foreign market can offer many benefits for private business, including increased sales, higher profits, competitive advantage and a reduced dependency on domestic markets, to name a few. However, it can also present new challenges and risks that require careful consideration. Here are some ideas to help you navigate through the process:

Set the right strategy and priorities
Planning for expansion is a strategic exercise that involves identifying the market that meets your private company’s needs from among the many attractive options. Your strategy should consider the markets, your products or services and your overall goals for international trade. This may seem daunting, but without a full analysis of each potential market you risk choosing a market that may not be the best one for your business.

Develop the skills to evaluate, plan and execute entry into a new market
Companies expanding overseas, especially for the first time, need to acquire some new skills and expertise. It’s important to understand the effort of conducting business in a given foreign market and investigate the regulatory environment, the culture and the ability to operate seamlessly. Also, determine whether there’s a clear and growing demand for the type of products or services you offer, a base of potential clients who have the interest and money to buy and what the competitive landscape looks like.

Understand cultural, product and regulatory differences
Local culture and customs can have a significant impact on expansion. It can affect marketing your product, human resources and your methods of conducting business. It’s a good idea to get advice from someone with expertise in the market’s cultural norms and nuances. Being respectful of cultural differences can help you avoid making costly faux pas.

Get the right advice
Even where good data and information are widely available, look for people on the ground to advise you. Nothing beats real life experience when it comes to export know-how. Try to network with people who have lived in, conducted business in or have some type of connection to your target market. The information they can provide is invaluable.

Build a strong management team
Building a team of people you trust, and who share your ideas about running your private business, is an essential step in expansion. Your management on the ground needs good local knowledge and experience that can drive expansion and ensure linkages with your home market. Develop a strategy for recruitment and keep in mind that management skills needed to get a new operation off the ground may not be the same ones needed once your business is well established and growing.

Create a governance structure
Attempting to micro-manage a local operation from afar is unlikely to be successful, but you will need to retain oversight. Impose a clear decision-making process that empowers local managers to run day-to-day operations effectively while working toward the business’s strategic vision.

Be clear about your objectives and monitor progress
State your goals at the outset, along with measurable performance indicators that can be tracked by both local managers and your head office. Staying on top of progress to plan will help minimize risks and enhance your success in the market.

Your rationale for a move into a new market may be one of opportunity — overseas markets can offer exciting new prospects, high growth potential or the chance to better serve existing clients. Alternatively, it may be one of risk. You owe it to your business to do the research necessary to decide if it’s the right strategy to pursue.

By Bill Hamilton and Brock McMillan at www.financialpost.com

Click here to view the original article.






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