In the new economy, market research has become a key step in satisfying and retaining customers – in essence, it teaches you what products and/or services would be profitable in today’s market.
Can your business succeed without it? Why or why not? Read on to learn why market research is a critical first step in launching a successful venture and ensuring business vitality.
In order to understand market research in PR, we need to define the term. The American Marketing Association has a great definition: it’s “the function that links the consumer to the marketer through information.” In order to have a strategy that gets marketing penetration and sales volume, you need to know what the mindset is of your target consumers. PR is all about changing minds. So it behooves you to find out what the mindset is of your consumers and clients before starting a PR campaign.
- What consumers think of your industry,
- What their opinion is of your company and if they know about you, your products, your services,
- What do they need and want,
- What do they hate,
- What do they like/dislike,
- What they would be more receptive to listening to and actually reading rather than just throwing away.
These are just some of the things that you can find out when conducting marketing research. Past bad experiences, tainted viewpoints, bad publicity about a product or a certain company or a type of company – these are what we call “emotional barriers” that can all cause difficulty for your business unless you have the marketing intelligence to be able to push through them and get your message across. If you’re unable to knock down those barriers, it’ll cost you a lot of time and a lot of money to figure out what your potential customers want – and you may never get there.
The reason why we get such good results in PR is because we know what the media wants. Not only do we do our own market research on the media, but we do it on the target markets of our clients. And when we present stories to the media, we’re talking about their target markets that they know. By doing so, they know that we understand the buttons and the barriers and what people want to hear about or read or listen to. And that’s why they trust us.
Let me give you some examples:
- Take a manufacturing company – they spent a lot of money on a marketing campaign. And what they thought that what their target market was interested in was that their products were “green” and environmentally sound. The result? Their sales tanked. So when JoTo came in, we did marketing research. And we found out their target market didn’t care a thing about being green. All they wanted was a durable product that was long-lasting and economical. Those were the three buttons. We used that in an online PR campaign because this is where the consumer searched for their products and services. We were able to get this client featured in online news outlets and we used the three buttons in the articles. It’s durable, long-lasting and economical. Our client was also able to use the same buttons in their marketing campaign. And since then, their sales have taken off and they’re selling more than they ever have before.
- A group of physicians – they were seeing lowered insurance reimbursement rates and they desperately needed to find something to supplement their income. When JoTo came in, we did marketing research on their patients, as well as their prospective patients. We found out what services they were willing to pay cash for and also that there was a real need for certain preventative healthcare services. The doctors took that information and not only were they able to supplement their income, but now they’re expanding into whole new revenue.
The bottom line is if you don’t have marketing research, you won’t know what your target market needs, wants, likes or what they respond to. You don’t have to make that mistake. Marketing research is how we do PR in the new economy. Not only does it minimize business risks, but it also helps you identify opportunities.
Contact JoTo PR today to begin assessing the demands of your target market and bringing your business to next-level awareness.