You have streamlined your production, optimized your services, and mastered your specific trade. Now it is time to conduct in-depth market research. Why, you ask?
The answer is this: market research strengthens your brand in a variety of impactful ways. Knowing your target audience allows your business to reach the right people with specialized advertising strategies that speak directly to their values and purchasing trends. Market research also plays a crucial part in knowing which of your new business ideas or brands will succeed.
Read on to learn why market research is one of the best tools you can use to strengthen your brand:
It Enhances Your Outreach
One of the largest benefits of thorough market research is the widened reach of your marketing efforts. A solid understanding of your target audience allows you to reach consumers that you may not have been aware of and vice versa.
The gathering and analysis of consumer data often reveals hidden trends, untapped markets, and unfulfilled needs, all of which can be utilized to provide consumers with tailored services and advertising.
A pre-branding process of thoughtfully prepared and analyzed market research ensures that your brand connects and garners top-of-mind awareness across target markets.
It Reveals Your Audience’s Values
Many businesses make the mistake of becoming so entrenched with their existing products or focus so much on the creative process surrounding their brand elements–logo designs, taglines, and color schemes–that they lose sight of what customers actually want. Oftentimes, this leads to an aesthetically pleasing brand, but one that doesn’t necessarily resonate with target audiences.
In the past, consumers would often buy products based entirely on their function and features. While this is still an important part of the buying process, it has now become necessary for brands to take on personas that emulate certain values. In other words, consumers nowadays want to purchase products and services from businesses whose values align with their own.
Market research allows businesses to have a firm grasp of their target audience’s values. This is important for creating an effective brand, as well as reaching consumers with relevant, personalized content and advertisements.
It Helps You Influence the Buying Process
Not all consumers are created equal. Some are avid buyers of your specific offerings, some are not experienced, and others are somewhere in the middle. In the marketing and sales worlds, this is what is referred to as the sales funnel.
Inexperienced buyers are located at the top of the funnel and require advertising that can assist with their beginner understanding of your products and services. Experienced customers, on the other hand, are located at the bottom of the funnel. They know exactly what they are looking for and require advertising that is much more in depth.
A firm understanding of where members of your target audience are in their buying processes will allow you to diversify your advertisements based on optimizing your unique sales funnel.
It Makes Adapting to Changing Markets Easier
Most markets are not static environments due to the fact that, over time, consumers change their purchasing habits. This is why successful brands are always keeping their ear to the ground by regularly gathering consumer data.
Understanding and reacting to changing market climates allows for businesses to release cutting edge advertising strategies as well as effectively manage consumer opinions through public relations.
Knowing the latest consumer trends through market research and adapting to them makes this area of market research a key factor when building a strong brand.
How to Conduct Market Research
Begin with a Brand Audit
If you have an existing brand that needs a revamp, the first step is to analyze it objectively. Where does your brand stand today and how it changed since it started?
A brand audit typically consists of evaluating the following:
- External Branding: advertising, creative, website, social media, public relations, videos, and print collateral.
- Internal Branding: messaging, brand values, culture, voice, Unique Selling Proposition (USP) and positioning.
- Corporate/Infrastructure: corporate identity and policies, internal systems and sales processes.
Depending on your budget, focus groups, and online surveys of employees, customers, and partners can be helpful tools to identify an existing brand’s strengths, weaknesses, and opportunities. The results of this analysis will provide the necessary direction for your rebrand.
Combine Primary and Secondary Research
For a new brand–be it an original or a rebrand–it is critical to combine both primary and secondary market research methods to produce one that will connect with your target markets. Use qualitative, or exploratory market research methods to ask customers for feedback about your brand or business (or industry-at-large if you are just starting up) via online chats, interviews, and social media.
Conduct secondary market research—information and data gathered by others— by collecting industry-focused information from publications, databases, and associations to assist you in better understanding target market perceptions and any market barriers. This method is also effective in reviewing the current strategies of your competitors; helping you to differentiate yourself in the marketplace.
Along with driving the logo design, this integral research fuels the creation of a unique selling proposition (USP), which serves as a uniform message that articulates why your product or service is the perfect solution for its target markets.
Summarize Your Data
Once the market research phase of your branding initiative is complete, you will have created a comprehensive outline of the characteristics and messaging of a unique and successful brand.
When you feel satisfied with your finished product and you still have the ambition and budget for some extra market research, it is a tried-and-true best practice to test your brand among potential customers and prospects via survey or focus group. Your result will be a brand that prospective and existing customers will embrace, remember, and reward with loyalty.
A successful business is so much more than its products and services. It is a brand that consumers know and love because it speaks directly to them. If your business is ready to experience the advantages of widespread outreach, an in-depth understanding of your target market, an optimized sales funnel, and knowledge of the latest consumer trends, contact Linda Fanaras, President/Strategist of Millennium Agency at www.mill.agency.
About Millennium Agency
Millennium Agency is a nationally recognized, top woman led B2B branding, positioning, and digital marketing firm who knows how to create value that emotionally influences your customer’s buying decision, giving you the competitive advantage. As your trusted partner in B2B software technology and manufacturing, we provide the branding and positioning framework that make an impact – so you can focus on what you do best – run your business successfully. With offices in Boston and New Hampshire, and a worldwide presence, the professionals at Millennium Agency would like to learn more about your business. Visit www.mill.agency or book time here.