If not, you’re not alone. Many small business owners feel market research is beyond their budget or skill set. However, there are some free and low cost tools you can use to help you with this important task. Gaining information from a variety of viewpoints is best, “but starting small is better than not starting at all”, says Dr. Ursula Saqui of Saqui Research in Crown Point. Saqui recommends the following strategic methods of listening purposefully and strategically with your listening.
Researching market trends
- Provides a snapshot of customers’ landscape
- Alerts you to changes in industry that may effect your customers
- Gives you a baseline for comparing your customers’ data against the larger industry trends
- Tip: try trade associations, Bureau of Labor Statistics, university research departments, non-profit research entities such as the Pew Research Center.
Listening to your employees (coming soon!)
Listening to your customers (coming soon!)
Start with market trend research and add the other two once you’ve got step one set up. Once you begin listening in these multiple ways, look for patterns where there is alignment.
To listen to the full podcast with Dr. Ursula Saqui, click here: