Market Research Is Vital – But Which Is Better: DIY, or Hire a Pro?

Today’s complex global marketplace makes it essential for every business to collect, analyse and act on the newest information such as market trends, competitive positioning and customer opinions. A company’s strategic goal today is not just profit. It is a complex combination of profit with growth, competitive advantage and customer satisfaction. This means that the business must be in closer touch with its market than ever before: This is where market research and analysis comes in.

Challenges Facing Market Research Teams:

1.       Constant demands from decision makers for insights

2.       The Ongoing Need to Understand Global Markets

a.       Creating Strategies That Overcome Competitive forces

3.       Understanding New Segments such as Gen-X Customers and Expectations

4.       Bringing Information Technology (IT) and Marketing Closer

5.       Using Your Marketing Resources Optimally.

The problem: The cost of a market research team makes it a cost centre. In reality, it is anything but that. Unfortunately, businesses under cost and margin pressure frequently look at direct value-add – the number of leads generated or deals closed, and are therefore cautious about hiring and building a market research team that has no immediate bottom-line contribution.

Market research, however, is core to competitiveness. Large corporations know this, and can afford an in-house team; small and mid-sized companies have the same need but not all can afford the overhead. They need another option – market research, but only when needed.

Here are some of the advantages of contracting out market research to specialists.

  • Specialization – Experienced market research teams typically use high-end tools and the newest techniques
  • Security – Market Research firms provide anonymity to companies who are not comfortable sharing their name with their prospects or customers.
  • Unbiased– An external research agency can give companies reliable and unbiased research results.
  • Access to Diverse skills– Market Research companies work across industry verticals. They develop a broad base of skills that they can leverage, giving you more bang for your buck.
  • Cost savings-A mid-sized company has to manage costs and using a specialist market research company helps – you only use them as needed. You do not have to pay four weeks wages for two weeks of work.

What are your experiences on contracting out market research? Has it been worth it or not?

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