Good decision making requires data – you don’t need to be a scientist for data to be very important to you. If you’re not basing your business on data and research, then you’re limiting your insights to what you’ve personally experienced, and even the best entrepreneur will reach the limits of their experience in time. If you’re not getting reliable research to feed your decision making processes with, you’re liable to be wiped out by the first problem you’ve never encountered before.

Today we’re taking a look at how you can get that research done, and feel confident that you’re making decisions that will drive your brand towards success!

Doing Your Own Research

You can start by performing your own research. If you want to know what your customers value about your business, then talking to them is the best way to find out.

You may have done the same for other businesses – some cafes offer the chance to win free coffee in exchange for filling in a customer satisfaction form. Online businesses may follow up your order with a ‘how was our service’ email. You might have even been handed a short survey to complete instore and return as you make your purchase.

If you opt for this solution, you need to make sure you put some thought into how you go about it. If you’re just looking for a top level read on customer satisfaction, think about the precise service you want to give to customers and make sure you’re creating a short survey that gets right to the core of those issues, rather than testing customer patience with a long series of questions.

Getting the Experts Involved

For better insights, or more advanced projects – like international research prior to launching into a new market, you need professional expertise.

Working with a market research firm gets you that expertise. One of the most important things they can do for you is reach an audience beyond the customers whose loyalty you’ve already captured. If you’re going to learn how to grow your market share, you need data from those people: the opinions of loyal customers are, for this purpose, no use to you.

By far the most important thing a specialist market research firm can do for you is turn the data they gather in to insights. They don’t just get raw figures for you, they tell you what they mean and how you can put them to work for you, growing the success of your brand.

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