How a product succeeds in the business market depends on how well it meets the needs of consumers. By the same token, consumer tastes and preferences depend upon the targeted market. For example, marketing to millennials and Gen X’ers must be done differently than marketing to Baby Boomers.
Going further with this, there are a variety of sub-niches to be considered. If you are marketing men’s shaving products, for example, you would not generally need to select a demographic of women. Or if you are selling products for people with dogs, you don’t want to focus on reaching non-dog owners who live in apartment dwellings, and so forth. Hence, the need to conduct market research is a must to gain insight on the products that consumers want and need.
Failing to conduct market research before launching a new product is like stepping out on the top of a cliff with a blindfold and no safety equipment. You may land safely in a tree, or you might fall and lose everything.
Launching a new product in the market is not an easy task. Although it might seem like a confusing obstacle, extensive market research is needed. Many new business owners in ecommerce make the mistake of jumping right into the marketing game without completing this step. Yet, the importance of conducting market research cannot be over (or under) stated.
The purpose of conducting market research before launching a new product is to:
- Help a business owner understand the composition of the market. By knowing about similar, competitive products that are leading in the marketplace, you can adapt your products in a way to gain a competitive edge.
- Enable a business to gain feedback from potential customers. Conducting market research prior to a product launch helps a company to gain insight on how well the product will be received (and perceived) by the target audience. This saves the company from incurring losses due to manufacturing a product that does not meet customer expectations and allows the business owner to make product adjustments, if need be.
- Gain new ideas on how to manufacture other products in future.
- Identify the best packaging to use on the product. The feedback gained from the market research will help the company to see which colors, font styles and designs have the greatest appeal.
- Know if the product is desirable to the target audience, as well as which stage the market is.
- Identify the market trends and whether they relate to the product the company wants to launch. Adjustments can be made, if needed.
- Understand the needs of the consumers targeted and subsequently customize the product to meet those needs.
- Identify all potential distribution channels that will be used to market the product.
- Stay ahead of competitors by identifying the optimal pricing strategy that will increase profits for the company.
- Discover any potential problems that may arise when marketing the products and look for solutions to solve them.
- Establish a market segment.
As much as market research is important, it is also expensive. New companies should set aside resources to conduct the marketing research process. Also, companies which have been established for some time, should also consider the purpose of conducting market research before launching a new product to be an investment well worthwhile.
If your company is relatively new or the budget is small, you can utilize the services of freelancers to help you achieve this. For example, the Time, etc. website offers freelance virtual assistants whom you can assign these tasks. Fiverr is another example of gig-based freelancers who can perform one-time projects for small business owners. Find a FIVERR Pro to help you conduct market research, here.
Overall, the cost of conducting market research before launching a new product will be well worth the investment, if not for the fact that it will prove to be more lucrative than launching in an unforeseen world of millions of consumers. Some may call this a niche marketing tactic, while others will just call this good business practice. It can certainly save a lot of time and money wasted.