Monday, March 27, 2017

Some Guerrilla Market Research Techniques

Let's face it: market research can be very expensive.  It's getting difficult to to anything with a market research company for less than $10,000.  And as a result, many small businesses simply do without.  But there are some tricks for learning things that don't require a major cash outlay.

One tactic is "guerrilla market research".  This is based on the idea that we pick up our best intelligence from looking for ourselves.  A competitor brick and mortar can be observed: I've taken a seat on a bench and watched customers enter and leave and made notes about who I saw.  Obviously one should be respectful and not camp out at the front door for this.  Mystery shopping is a related technique that allows allows for the observation of product lines and pricing, for example.

It's a little harder to watch competing service providers, people who work from home, say.  But there are business expos now and then that competitors may use and that's an opportunity to see who the most interested prospects might be.  Most of all we can look at competitors on social media or web sites and see who engages with the business.  

Bottom Line: Don't not do market research because money is a concern.  There are ways---many ways---to observe a market that don't cost a fortune and which provide solid, useful data.

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