A Good Marketer Is Always Researching
The Internet is awash with products and services that offer customers more choices than ever before. This has made the job of differentiating your products and services all the more difficult, which gives credence to the importance of understanding your marketplace, your competition, and how your company can effectively compete.
Knowing the all-importance of developing long-term customer relationships is placing heavy demands on marketers everywhere. This is why the term “market research” should not scare you off, but it is an activity in which you need to regularly engage. By using market research, you can comb through the myriad of factors confronting your company—or possibly confounding it—and pinpoint a clear and focused strategy to drive your entire marketing program.
Researching your market can provide your business with specific snapshots of key insights on how to win more attention and close more deals. That should be reason enough, but here are a few more benefits:
- good market research can let you know what your customers really think about you;
- it can tell you if your pricing is too high, too low, or just right; and
- it can let you know if you need to change any of your products or add new ones.
In our many years of consulting, we have consistently observed that many troubled companies got that way because they didn't want to allocate market research dollars to their marketing spend, preferring to instead invest heavily in awareness building and lead capture. Don't misunderstand, those are good and useful dimensions as well.
Think about it, though. If you don't research your customers, prospects, competition and overall marketplace, isn't marketing a lot like shooting at a flying duck with your eyes closed!
Today, every company is its own publisher and responsible for its content. That fact has shifted the ability to make strategic decisions for the company, lessing the role of marketing firms and industry publishers. The good news is you're in control. The bad news can be—if you're not experienced in strategic marketing and/or publishing—that you are in control!
Tom Marin is the president of MarketCues, a national consulting firm. Tom serves as a senior advisor and change-management consultant with 35 years of experience. He has worked for some of the world’s largest corporations, as well as middle-market firms. Tom's focus is to plan and drive strategy shifts and strategic growth programs in the printing industry and a diverse range of market areas.