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Introduction to market surveys
Whether you’re looking to launch a new business or move into a new market; or maybe grow or broaden your presence in an existing market. Whatever you aim to do, you’ll need a degree of certainty about the market you’re focusing on, if you’re to maximise your chances of success.
From the identification or critique of market gaps, to an examination of the opportunities and threats, some level of market analysis is essential in order to reduce the risks of any market venture you undertake.
From pricing trends to analysis of customer requirements and competitor activity, you’ll also need to undertake primary and secondary research of fresh and existing data, to gain a deeper and more comprehensive understanding of the market you’re interested in.
By enabling you to gather, analyse and interpret information, market surveys are the ideal primary market research method to help you better understand the characteristics, expectations and requirements of your target audience. This can ultimately help you to uncover what features of your products or services your target audience are more readily willing to accept and so help guide your strategy.
How market surveys fit into market research
While a well-developed and planned market survey can deepen your understanding and determine how well you’re able to move into or expand your presence in a market, these types of surveys are also effective for more niche areas of market research.
With the insight they can deliver, market surveys can enable you to better understand the wants, needs and expectations of a target audience group, while similarly giving you a better feel for a new product market, the appeal of your brand and even the likely success of a new advertising campaign.
From key demographic information to behavioural questions that reveal more about their habits, attitudes and desires. The consumer insights that a market survey provides can help you to identify and understand the right audience or consumer group for your products or services.
Take this further with an audience survey.
Having as good an understanding of the demand for and market you’re planning to launch into is essential to your product’s success. From the functionality and features of your product concept, to the potential usage and price you should set for your finished product, the insights from a market survey can give you the clarity you need about what improvements you need to make to help maximise your product’s success.
Take this further with a product survey.
Given how much the qualities of a brand drives consumer decisions when differentiating between competing companies, it’s vital to know how your own brand is perceived. From examining familiarity with your brand and its qualities and how you’re perceived alongside your competitors, to how likely customers would be to recommend your brand to a friend or colleague. Running a market survey can provide the customer insight you need to identify what you need to do with your brand positioning and messaging to drive greater awareness and market share.
Take this further with a brand survey.
Advertising is an extremely effective way of reaching out to your target audience with a new product or service. However, it’s essential that it’s communicating the right message and resonating with your audience if you’re to gain the greatest value from it. With a market survey you can test out some ad designs and messaging with a sample of your target audience, so you can tweak and then run with the most popular concepts when you’re ready to launch your campaign.
Take this further with an advertising survey.
Only 5% of products launch successfully, which is why solid market research and product positioning matters. - Harvard Business School
Types of market survey
There are many types of market surveys available to organisations to run, collect and analyse data depending on the aims of their market research. From surveys to better understand various aspects of a market, in order to address topics such as the right time to launch a product or service, to surveys that help you to better understand market trends, competitor activity, customer loyalty and much more. Here are some of the most popular:
Market segmentation surveys
While you might have a great product or service, you’ll struggle to sell if you’re not focusing on the right market segment.
Through a market segmentation survey, you’re better able to understand what different members of your target market have in common, as well as how they differ, based on anything from their demographics and geographical location to their behaviours and attitudes. Based on this insight, you’re then able to segment your target audience into smaller groups and tailor the marketing of your goods according to their preferences and tastes.
Product positioning surveys
Knowing what sets your product apart from your competitors and where it fits in the marketplace in comparison to them is essential, if you’re to create the right marketing messages aimed at the right audience to maximise your success.
From asking for your audiences’ opinions about what they believe to be your product’s biggest strengths and weaknesses, to what they find most valuable and useful about it. The insight that a product positioning survey can provide can increase its chances of success when its launched.
Competitor analysis surveys
Your customers can provide you with a rich source of insight including information about your competitors.
From what your customers like or dislike about their products, to how much they are having to pay and what channels they are having to buy through and much more. The questions in a competitor analysis survey not only reveal your customers’ experience with your competitors, but also your competitor strengths and weaknesses in key business areas in comparison to your own. This information can highlight what you need to be your customers’ preferred vendor and help strengthen your own market position.
Market share surveys
From insight that gives you a better indication of your market’s real size, to demographic information that enables you to better understand the potential audience of that market. The insight that a market share survey can reveal can give you a better indicator of the market share available for any new product or service launch, or market expansion venture you’ve been planning.
Our market survey software
To be able to conduct a wide range of different market surveys, you need access to powerful market survey software, if you’re to effectively collect, measure and analyse your feedback and be able to deliver actionable market insights.
With our survey software in place this is easy to achieve thanks to:
User-friendly survey software
Thanks to our easy to use software, ready-made and customisable templates, extensive question library and advanced features, it’s quick and easy to tailor your survey and questions to meet the aims of any area of market research you need to undertake.
Versatile distribution options
From email and web to SMS or QR codes, whatever audience you need to reach and wherever they are located, with a wide range of distribution options it’s easy to reach out and engage them, so you can gather the essential data you need.
Powerful analysis and reporting
Once you have your data, you’ll want to be able to draw on any actionable insights as quickly as you can. Our software ensures you’re able to identify trends or correlations in your data quickly, while strong reporting tools featuring smart dashboards and a wide range of charts and graphical formats, makes it’s simple to present your findings and next steps to your colleagues.
Only around 7% of companies are doing detailed competitor research with the use of such mediums as competitive analysis surveys of their customers, offering significant advantages to those that are doing this. - Producthabits.com
Market survey best practice
It doesn’t matter what type of market survey you’re looking to run, there are a number of parameters and best practice steps you need to have in place if you’re to maximise its success and the value you’re able to obtain from it.
Here’s six best practice steps you need to consider:
1. Be clear about your goal
When starting your research and market survey you need to have a clear objective in mind. You can help identify this by asking yourself questions such as the following:
- Why are you doing the survey?
- What do you want to find out?
- What are you hoping to do with the findings of your research?
Being precise about the outcome you’re seeking, is more likely to give you the answers you need.
2. Know what target market you want to survey
This starts with knowing which market you’re targeting. Identify parameters for potential customers, which could include anything from people living or working in a certain region, to a specific market size, or individuals that fit a particular demographic.
Consider using regional data to attain more precise information about the target audience whose data you need and then narrow this down to support your ultimate goal.
For example, if you wanted to introduce an exclusive priority service for your customer offering, you may just want to gather information from people living in a certain area or earning over a certain amount.
3. Know what you want to investigate
This is typically informed by your marketing goals. So, if you’re launching a new product, you may want to investigate anything from what levels of demand and awareness there are for it, to if people are currently buying something similar from a competitor and how frequently they are purchasing this.
Knowing what you want to investigate will help you identify what sort of information you need, with the insight that your questions could reveal helping to guide your future strategies.
4. Creating and distributing your survey
From the choice, structure and mix questions you use to reach out to your target audience, to what channels you use to distribute your survey. It’s important to think carefully about the options available to you and select the best ones if you’re to maximise your response and gather as much information about your target audience as you possibly can.
5. Consider support from survey experts
By turning to the experts in market survey data, you can ensure that you’re asking the right questions to the right people and getting a sample size that gives you the most accurate insights within the timeframe you need.
When speaking with them ask if they can offer you a consumer panels service as this is ideal in meeting this requirement. With our own service we’ve able to provide you with instant access to more than 20 million respondents globally. So, whatever you’re looking to survey and whatever demographic you want to target, we can get you the responses you need within your required timeframe.
6. Conduct a thorough analysis of your survey data
Once you’ve gathered your market survey responses, these need to be analysed thoroughly, in order to pull out any key findings and trends that will allow you to draw actionable insights from the data. Having quality survey software that enables you to view, present and manipulate your data in a wide variety of ways will help with.
But it’s also important to examine any qualitative answers with quotes that can reveal more detailed feedback about attitudes and behaviours, as well as interrogating quantitative answers to calculate averages.
42% of small businesses fail because there’s no market need for their services or products. - Fundera
Example market survey questions
From launching a new product or service, to checking out your competitors or your position in the market before trying to grow your brand. There can be many reasons for running a market survey and assessing what you need to do, before making your move.
So, to help get you started, we’ve detailed a few areas with some sample questions you could you potentially use below.
Before a new product launch, you’re likely to want to examine what a sample of your audience thinks of your product concept, before it goes into final production. Suitable questions you might want to ask them include:
What are the things you most like and dislike about this product?
Are there any areas that you would most like to improve with this new product?
What do you most like and dislike about competing products currently available from other companies?
Alternatively, you might be looking to strengthen your brand and position in the market, and therefore need to find out more about your competitors’ activities. Suitable questions you might like to ask you sample audience about this include:
What do you believe to be our competitors’ biggest strengths and weaknesses?
Where do you perceive our brand in comparison to our competitors, are we at the higher, middle or lower end of the market?
What channels are our competitors using to effectively attract customers?
How are we different?
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