Market information Market Information Knowing your target market is extremely important for all businesses. But when you are starting a business in a country other than your origin, the knowledge about the markets becomes even more important. No matter how good your product or service is, in order to sell it you'll have to convince people they want or need it. Get a business idea Learn the needs of your customers This means you have to find out what do your customers want or need. You also need to study your competitors in order to compete in the marketplace. It is also useful to think about the market trends. Use this knowledge to differentiate your service or product from the ones offered by the competitors. Find out who the competitors are and what they do This section provides you information on the essentials of markets: what do you need to know and how and where you can find the information? Rework on your business idea to offer something special to your customers How can I find my target market? (1) There is no single product or service that would fulfil the needs of all people. As an entrepreneur you need to identify specific customers and try to satisfy their needs. 1. Start by thinking about your product/service: – – What it will be used for, who will use it, how much does it costs, how long does it last, and what is unique about it etc. This will give you the first idea who your customers might be. 2. Continue by researching demographic and psychographic information of your potential customers: – – Demographics include for example the age and gender, education, income levels and the ethnic and religious background Psychographics include for example personality, values, attitudes, interests, and lifestyles (How to Find Your Target Market, eHow.com: http://goo.gl/n65X3; How to Determine Your Target Market for a New Product, eHow.com: http://goo.gl/KP9lM; How to Determine If a Market Exists for a Product, eHow.com http://goo.gl/3sUCP) 0008016781N © photl.com How can I find my target market? (2) 3. Next, assess your competitors: – – Who are they? What kind of products they are offering? What kind of customer profiles they have? etc. You can do a S.W.O.T.T. analysis (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats, Trends) on your business compared to the competitors 4. Based on this information write a description of your target audience. – You might find out that you have several customer types. Writing a separate description for each will help you to focus on one target group at a time. 5. Before launching your business officially, test your product out with potential customers. — Modify your products and services based upon the feedback you receive. (How to Determine If a Market Exists for a Product, eHow.com http://goo.gl/3sUCP; How to Find Your Target Market, eHow.com: http://goo.gl/n65X3); How to Determine Your Target Market for a New Product, eHow.com: http://goo.gl/iPyBA) How to do market research? There are two types of market research: 1. Secondary market research 2. Primary market research If you have money, you can hire a marketing research company to do the research for you Tip: Students at local business schools might do market feasibility studies for course credit Market research is a continuous process. You need to continue studying your customers and modify your products based upon feedback you receive, so that you can keep up with the competition and can respond to the needs of the customers. Alternatively, you can do the market research by yourself 0002630842ZZ © photl.com What is secondary market research? It means analysing data that has already been collected by someone else. + often quite cheap, materials can be found free of charge online + a good starting point when you want to analyse your target markets, competitors and political, social and economic factors does not allow you to get first hand knowledge of your customers and their needs © Ariel da Silva Parreira in Stockvault.net © Ariel da Silva Parreira in Stockvault.net Where do I find information on markets? Secondary information you can exploit: • Business magazines and newspapers provide information on the economy and the effect it’s having on different types of markets. • National statistics offices offer statistical information on economy, population and trends • Local authorities and Chambers of Commerce can advise you with local information • Market reports available free of charge from the web, also market research companies sell them online © SXC.hu / Jesper Noer What is primary market research? It is analysis of information that is directly collected from the source, e.g. from your customers. + the information is likely the most valuable, because it is the most current and the most specific can be costly and time-consuming to gather this kind of data It is advisable to use both secondary and primary market research to get a comprehensive picture of your markets. 0010820860P © photl.com How do I conduct a primary market research? The starting point for all market research should be the objective of the research. Also the type of data you need and the amount of money you are able to spend will determine which techniques you choose. The most common techniques of collecting the data include: • • • • • Interviews Focus groups Surveys Observation Field tests (Understanding the Basics of Small Business Market Research, AllBusiness.com: http://goo.gl/xxIu9) © Dreamstime.com / Rob Bouwman Tips for conducting the market research • • • • • Pay attention to the sample: make sure your target group is relevant to your needs Reward your customers after having participated in your study, e.g. offer discount coupons or organise a prize draw Keep your research impartial, avoid using leading questions Interpret results with care, you can use an outside person to analyse your data Do not ignore criticism as it can be the most valuable data for you to develop your service (How to Conduct Market Research, eHow.com: http://goo.gl/BNvQA; Market research and market reports, Business Link: http://goo.gl/xIrxe) Where to find market research reports? Euromonitor International (an independent company offering market research reports subject to a charge): http://www.euromonitor.com/ Enterprise Ireland (Irish government organisation responsible for the development and growth of Irish enterprises in world markets), Market Research Centre, Country reports http://www.enterprise-ireland.com/en/ExportAssistance/Market-Research-Centre/Country-Reports.html UK Trade & Investment (UKTI works with UK-based businesses to ensure their success in international markets), Country reports http://www.ukti.gov.uk/export/countries.html Video tutorials Understanding your customers’ needs: http://www.elearning.businesslink.gov.uk/starti ngup/0138 Who is your competition? http://bcove.me/7t7x7bkt Researching your market: http://bcove.me/wec8sngc (source: www.businesslink.gov.uk) Learning materials, tips and links • Tips and tools for conducting market research: http://www.inc.com/guides/biz_online/online-market-research.html • How to conduct market research: http://managementhelp.org/marketing/market-research.htm • 21 market research tips: http://www.sitepoint.com/market-research-tips/ • Survey monkey -tool: http://fi.surveymonkey.com/ This was the last slide of this topic. You can continue to the next topic of How to start up a business by returning to the start of the module or to the start of Learning materials. Please, click the following logos and visit us also on: WEB This project has been funded with support from the European Commission. This publication reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.