This article, sheds light upon the concept of Market Research and its relevance for your business. In the present scenario, customer choice is changing day by day. Businesses are also changing their business models through deep insights into market research. Market research enables companies to make strategic decisions according to customer needs. **The article is divided into 3 parts:** - **What? –** What is Market Research? - **Why? –** Why Market Research is important for your business? - **How? –** How to do Market Research for your business? # **Why is Market Research crucial?** Market research is crucial due to the following reasons: #### **1. Better understanding of customers**   You get a better understanding of your customers. You come to know about the following things: - Who is your ideal customer? - How frequently is he buying your product? - What does he exactly want? - What are his expectations? Following are the four important things you should know about your customer: 1. **Demographics:** It includes age, gender, family, household income of customers. 2. **Geography:** Location of a customer such as a city, country. 3. **Psychographics:** Personality traits, the lifestyle of customers. 4. **Behavior:** Customer attachment to a brand, shopping, and expenditure. Marketing research will help you to work on the following aspects: - Marketing strategy - Product positioning  - Product pricing  #### **2. Knowledge about Competitors**  If your competitor is doing better business than you, it shows they have done better research then you. Market research helps you in knowing about the following information about your competitors: - Performance of your competitors. - The weakness of your competitors. - Strengths of your competitors. You can use the above information in your business strategy. #### **3. Testing your product before launch** - It would be best if you did product testing before launching it in the market.  - You should give the product to your target audience.  - It helps to know their reaction. - If they do not like some features, you can change them during the testing phase. Market research will help you to make the following decisions: - What should be your approach to a product launch? - How to market your product? #### **4. Product development**  If you want to add some new feature in your product, market research will guide you in the following: - What are the current challenges faced by the customers?  - What does the customer expect from your product? It would help if you bridged this gap with the help of market research. #### **5. Business growth** Market research provides you with information about customer demand. It provides you with the following benefits: - Business opportunity   - Marketing strategy  - Minimise losses  The more you understand your customer, the better will be your product. >_Market research and Strategy are the four pillars of your business success._  # **Case studies about Market research**  Many brands have changed their business with the help of Market Research. Many of them had a comeback. #### **1. Asian paints** Asian paints is a very famous brand. With the help of market research, they understood that: - A woman is a decision-maker at home. She decides the time and colour of the paint. - They made marketing strategy and social media strategy focusing on women. - They signed Deepika Padukone as their brand ambassador, who connected to modern women. - This improved brand equity of Asian paints. #### **2. Maruti Suzuki** Maruti represents value for money, affordable, and easy to maintain. This created problem for Maruti Suzuki as people considered it a mass brand because: - The customer could not accept their expensive, classy models.  - Young customers did not accept Maruti as their first preference. They went to competition such as Hyundai, Honda, Toyota. Maruti team started researching. They did surveys and found that modern customer wants a design. He is ready to pay an extra amount for design. Maruti implemented the following changes after their market research: - They design their Maruti Suzuki Dzire in a new manner.  - They promote it as a new brand identity called NEXA.  - They repositioned their brand. - Their old customers liked Their premium models as they wanted to upgrade. - Young buyers preferred NEXA new trendy models. Finally, Maruti has maintained its 50% market share since these years. Their second competitor Hyundai stands for about 17% share in the market. #### **3. Kelloggs**  Kelloggs took rebirth in India due to market research mechanisms. When Kelloggs entered the Indian market in 1994, it was successful in foreign countries. They launched the same product in Indian markets without doing market research. - They launched it in India, but Indian customers did not like it. - Indian customers found it tasteless to eat it with cold milk. The analysts ignored the fact that: - Such a product was tasteless for Indian customers. - The price was very high for customers. - They would not pay a high amount for an item that would be consumed in 10 days. A revised strategy was planned after marker research. They found that customer needs: - Price  - Flavour  - Value  After 3 years Kelloggs launched its product called Frosties, that was a jackpot for them because it had a taste. Also, it was affordable for Indian customers. - Now Indian women started serving it as a morning breakfast to their families as it was healthy and budget-friendly. - Thus, they repositioned their product with a message of health& fitness. #### **4.Tupperware**  When Tupperware entered India, they started making products according to Indian usage. They created a plastic spice box in a rectangle tiffin box shape. The product was beautiful, yet failed.  When they did market research, they found that: - Indian woman is habitual of a circular steel spice box. - They can accept plastic box but not the rectangular shape. - Now they started making a circular spice box. - This product was successful.  # **#3 Market Research Implementation methods**  There are two methods of implementing market research: 1.    Primary research  2.    Secondary research The methods you adopt depends on the following factors: - The amount you want to spend on research. - The technique you want to use for research. - Your business category. - 4 P of marketing namely Product, price, place & promotion  # **What is primary research?** 1. If you are an entrepreneur, you should outsource primary research to a small agency. It is budget-friendly, and they have a wide reach & human resources. 2. Primary research involves surveys, focused group discussion, personal interviews & observations. 3. Primary research involves close-ended questions & open-ended questions. Close-ended questions provide you with a clear answer in yes or no. You can tick, multiple-choice questions, rating on a 1-10 scale. Open-ended questions in which they give you an answer in writing. # **Methods of primary research** #### **1. Surveys:**  Surveys involve in-person interviews with many people. The following are the types of surveys. ###### **a. In-Person Survey** - You can conduct a personal interview in this type of survey - You can choose a location such as a mall. - You can also show samples, take feedback from your customers. - It is an expensive method as you have to talk on an individual basis. - It is a time-consuming method. ###### **b. Telephone survey** - These are in-person surveys. - They are comparatively less expensive. - It is not easy to convince customers to give your survey answers. ###### **c. E-mail survey** - E-mail surveys are affordable and have a wider reach. - The response rate is the lowest. - This method is suitable for small business people.  ###### **d. Online surveys** - Nowadays, this is an essential method to do surveys. - Findings my vary as they are out of your control. - You are not aware of your customer. - You come to know the genuine feelings of a customer. The next method in primary research is the focus group. ### **2. Focus group:**  In a focus group, there is a chairperson who starts a group discussion in a scripted manner.  - It involves recorded cross-questioning. - You should discuss with these focus groups and know their opinion about your products. - Note the findings. ### **3. Personal Interviews:**  It is a simple method to know the findings of a small group. - It provides you with insights about customer personality & attitude. - It helps you to make a strategy for your product development. ### **4. Observations:**  You observe the actions of customers through a videotape when he visits the store. - It provides you with information about customer habits & shopping patterns.  #### **5. Field Trials:**  You give samples of a new product in selected stores for testing customer response.  - You get to customer response about price, product packaging, product placing. - You can make product modifications based on such information.  - Small businessman takes the help of local store owners, websites in product testing. # **#6 Secondary market research** Other persons do secondary research market for you. It includes the following: - Research Studies by research organisations. - Research studies by organisations that collect financial data about the industry. - You can buy this research, or if you are a member of an industry association, you can get the data. ## **Learnings** - Why is market research important? - What type of market research should be done? - How is market research done? This helps you in defining your customer and his wants. It helps you in positioning your brand. You should keep in mind the following points while researching your participants: - You should engage with them.  - Make them comfortable so that they give you honest feedback. - It would help if you prepared your research questions according to your market and research method. Your success highly depends on your customer mindset. Using market research, make a list of your primary competition also. It would be best if you collected all the findings from market research. Then you can move towards your objective. Market research is required for the development of a successful product. Technology has made market research easy. It is easy & budget-friendly for you.