If you’ve heard the phrase “market research” thrown around the business space and feel like you’re the only one who has no idea what it is, I wanna squash that feeling right now. You’re NOT the only one.
In fact, I’ve found that SO many entrepreneurs, both seasoned and new, struggle to truly grasp what market research is – and more importantly, why they need it.
So let’s break it down.
Your market is your dream client base – the people you want to sell to. Research is the act of collecting data and information. So Market Research, in it’s purest form, is simply gathering data and information about your dream client base.
But what does that actually mean in practice?
I like to categorize market research into 2 different types: Informal Market Research & Formal market research.
Informal market research is the maintenance work keeping your business healthy – like working out and eating veggies helps maintain the health of your body. This includes actions like polling your audience in your instagram stories, collecting data from your comment section or your DMs, and auditing your sales calls to see what the common objections or reasons for booking you are!
Formal market research is the diagnostic & check-up work that ensures your business is in top shape – like going to the doctor’s and getting your lab work done ensures that your body is getting the care it needs. This includes actions like focus groups, surveys, and my personal favorite – interviewing your dream clients.
Check out my services page to learn more about the power of market research interviews and how I’ve helped my clients level-up their business with this fool-proof strategy!
They’re both essential, working in tandem to diagnose and then maintain as you launch and grow your business, put out new offers, pivot, and expand to serve new audiences.
So that’s market research in a nutshell. Let’s talk about why you need to do market research if you’re a business owner… no matter how much you’re earning or how long you’ve been in business.
Without data to back up your big business decisions, you’re working off of assumptions and guesses. With each action you take, you’re investing time, money, and emotional energy into that decision. When you take those actions without validating that they’re the most goal-aligned actions, you’re actively throwing that time, money, and emotional investment in the trash. It’s harsh, but true.
Think about it:
You have an idea to create a brand new offer that’s got you super fricken stoked. You’re excited to start building it, you’ve started finding collaborators, worked with your designer to get the logo polished and perfected, you’ve started creating the assets for the offer…and when you go to launch, it gets a less than stellar response ranging from absolute crickets to awkwardly forced sales conversations.
You thought for sure it’d be successful because you’ve already had success in the past. Your audience loves you, your previous offers have sold with ease, and you’ve been crushing the game.
So what give? Here’s the truth – you made big, client facing business decisions without your client at the center!
You based your decisions off of assumptions of what your audience would find valuable and want to invest in. You thought you had the answers, and you let those confident assumptions carry you through instead of relying on the data.
You got caught up in the shininess of the idea that you didn’t validate that the idea was set up to succeed.
Simply put, you didn’t have the data to back up the ideas.
Market research is essential for every client-centered business. It’s the lifeblood of innovation. It’s the biggest risk-reducer. It’s the most elevated approach to decision making.
Graduating to data-driven strategies allows you to mature the way you run your business to ensure your strategic moves are always rooted in adding massive value.
When it’s time to turn your passion project into a full on business, you take your money and your time more seriously (without sacrificing the passion and fun, of course). And with that, you’re able to step into authority status.
That’s the power of market research, and why no matter where you’re at in your business, you need to be using it as your level-up launchpad.
Market research isn’t just for the newbies. It’s an amazing tool to launch your business with less risk, but it’s an even more powerful tool to leverage the growing resources you have to strategically expand, hire, and multiply your success. Don’t take my word for it – see what the massive giants in business are doing:
Amazon, one of the world’s biggest investors in market research, owes its success to it. In this article, author Dave Lavinsky breaks down how Amazon’s expert use of market research helped them identify a gap in the market and work backwards – one of Jeff Bezos’s key strategies.
I’m no fan of Amazon’s, but it’s impossible not to see how massively this company has been able to grow by consistently solving consumer’s most pressing problems. This skillset comes from doing the market research and using that data to back into your winning products and offers.
Ready to do market research but aren’t sure where to start? Enter the Market Like a Mind-Reader interactive experience to identify what your next step is based on your unique business goals.
Happy researching, CEO!
Ciao for now,