The biggest challenges facing us as Entrepreneurs are the risks we will face. Unknown and unpredictable risks can lead to the failure of our ventures. Therefore, one of the biggest goals of an entrepreneur should be to reduce the risks he may face. If we can foresee and minimize our risks, our chances of success are very high. The more we know about our potential customers and the more we know about the market we will enter, the better. The way to do this is through good market research.
Market research is the process of analyzing how the product or service we intend to offer will be received by our potential customers. It helps us to understand the habits of our potential customers, which product or service they tend to pay for, and their behaviors, feelings, and thoughts.
Market research and the Value Proposition I have written before are the two most important factors that determine whether we will be successful or not. These;
- Does the product or service we offer benefit our customers?
- What are the highlights of our product or service?
- Are our customers satisfied with the current products in the market?
- Is the market we intend to enter big enough?
- Who are our competitors and can compete with them do we have the strength
- Can we create a new market other than the current one?
They help us answer critical questions such as The answers we collect provide information about the market we intend to enter and its size. Not only new entrepreneurs, but also the players in the market conduct market research at certain intervals according to the dynamics of the sector. This is because the market is lively and can change.
The Market Changes. There Are Always New Opportunities
Initiatives doing market research can analyze the expectations of customers well and shape their business plans accordingly and dominate the market. Good market research shows us not only the current situation, but also how the startup should take a position in the future. The best example of this is Airbnb. Although there is no accommodation, it has managed to become the biggest player in the accommodation sector in the world.
The Airbnb initiative has analyzed the expectations of customers well in its market research and has arranged its business plan accordingly. This initiative, which brings together home owners who want to earn money by renting their house or a room in their house, and those who want to stay safely and at affordable prices, is the product of a good market research.
Trying to Understand the Customer
One of the most important parts of market research is getting to know our customer base correctly. If we can understand the expectations of our customers well, we will understand whether the product or service we offer them can hold up in the market. With our potential customers;
- We can meet face to face
- We can talk on the phone
- We can meet online
- We can provide computer-assisted personal interview
- We can provide computer-assisted phone call
We reached out to our customers and started collecting information about the products or services they currently use. In this process, customers may be dissatisfied with asking too many questions and prolonging the interview. We may offer them incentives such as gifts or free trial packages. In these interviews, we try to collect segmentation information such as age, gender, income distribution, location information of potential customers. We try to understand whether they are satisfied with the products or services available. We try to tell them about the aspects of our product that we think will be useful to them, whether they are interesting or not, and whether they will use our products.
To succeed in business you need to be original, but you also need to understand what your customers want.Richard Branson
Try to Measure the Size of the Market
Our discussions with our customers were positive and we realized that we had developed a suitable product or service for the market. All good so far, but is that enough? No. If we do not know how big the market we will enter is, the return on our investments may be far below our expectations. Understanding the size of the market will also show us how much our business can grow.
Using the right tools, we may collect information about the size of the market we intend to enter. Good market research is about being able to consistently predict the size of the market and how much it can grow. The best way to do this well is to gather as much information about the market as possible.
Try to Collect as Much Data as Possible
Data helps us both to know our customers correctly and to measure the size of the market. Data collection can be done by conducting interviews with customers, conducting surveys, finding and examining previous research on our industry. Data collection is a costly process and free tools can be used to minimize this. Apart from this, paid online tools can be preferred for more professional market analysis or you can work with companies that conduct market research for a certain fee.
As an entrepreneur, if we want to do market research at minimum prices;
- We should try to reach our potential customers ourselves
- We can prepare and use surveys using free tools
- We should be able to create questions and collect answers that can measure how satisfied our customers are with their current products or services.
- We can reach the studies on the market from libraries, chamber of commerce records, and researches of graduate or doctoral students of universities.
- We can make estimations from the production and sales figures published by our competitors.
- We can try to get information by contacting well-known senior managers in the industry.
- We can participate in fairs or seminars related to the sector, we can collect information about the market by asking questions to the experts.
Analyze Your Competitors
No matter what sector we intend to venture into, we will have competitors or competitors. We may think that there is little competition in some markets, but potential strong competitors can always enter our market as competitors. Knowing our competitors or potential competitors and knowing their strengths and weaknesses will give us an advantage. If we want to hold on in the market and make our venture successful, it is very important to be able to analyze competitors correctly.
The better we can analyze our competitors or potential competitors in the market, the better we can protect our venture against the challenges we may encounter. The companies we intend to compete with may be so strong that we may consider changing our product or service or changing our market. We can revise our products or services according to our competitors and review the benefits we offer to customers. Rather than appealing to every customer in the market, we can strongly appeal to a certain audience.
For example, let’s look at the Xbox, Nintendo Wii and Playstation game consoles. They did the competitive analysis and how they positioned themselves in the market.
If we can analyze what our competitors offer, their weaknesses and strengths, we can position our brand in the market and create a successful venture.
Review Business Plan
There are many areas in our business plan. There are many important topics here, from how we do our marketing, how we bring our products or services to our customers, from our value proposition to our financial statements. As a result of the research we have done, we can make changes in our business plan. As a result of our discussions with our customers, we can redesign how we should deliver our products to our customers.
We can revise our channels with the market, change our online or offline marketing strategies and budgets. With the data we collect and our competitor analysis, we may decide to develop our product further, or we may decide to start our venture in different markets. The stronger our business plan, the greater our chances of success.
As a result, it clearly shows us whether we will implement our market research initiative, whether the product or service we are considering will be requested by customers. The most important part of market research is collecting accurate and consistent data. The data we collect; It will help us create our business plan and minimize our future risks.
In short, a good market research; to understand our customers correctly, to measure the size of the market, and to analyze our competitors well. You can browse other content that I think will be useful for entrepreneurs, and write your questions and information you want to share in the comments section.
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