Two More Characteristics of Good Market Research

Last week, Marka and the FEI tribe discussed some common characteristics of effective market research programs. This week, she explains two more attributes of good research. Remember, fire = print.

“Good market researchers are able to view the forest and the trees,” Marka began. “They should have the ability to step back from their research and determine:

1) If the information they’re gathering is worth more than its cost, and

2) Are they gathering information in order to discover a new opportunity, not just to determine what’s already been proven?

“These are the concepts we’ll focus on today,” Marka said as she strolled to the whiteboard.

• Good Market Research Weighs the Value and Cost of Information

“We should be trying to estimate the value of the information we’re getting against its cost,” Marka declared. “Research costs are easy to determine, but value is trickier.”

“How valuable research is depends on the reliability and validity of our findings, of course,” Zoot noted.

“Nice, Zoot!” Marka enthused. “Maybe you’ve got a little market researcher in you after all.”

“Uh oh, am I going to have to quit my day job?” Zoot asked with a grin creeping across his thick brow.

“The value of market research also depends on our willingness to accept and act on these findings,” Marka continued. “Good, reliable research that isn’t tied directly to consequent marketing actions is worth little.”

• Good Market Researchers Practice and Encourage Healthy Skepticism

“If market researchers are supposed to think like scientists, this also means approaching existing assumptions about markets with skepticism,” Marka explained. “Doing so will help ensure our research is guided by genuine curiosity, not an eagerness to prove what we already think.”

“Now that we’ve talked about effective market research, next week we’ll talk about factors that can hinder our research efforts,” Marka added.

T.J. Tedesco is a sales growth, business strategy, marketing and PR consultant operating at the intersection of clear vision, compelling content and effective outreach practices. For nearly two decades, T.J. has been an independent consultant and sales growth team leader. Previously, he sold commercial printing, graphic arts machinery and supplies, and finishing and bindery services. T.J. helps North American companies with content development, Web and print design leadership, nurture marketing programs, sales coaching, sales team alignment and business strategy. Since 1996, T.J. has worked with more than 100 clients on retainer, 80 percent in the graphic arts industry. T.J. is author of "Win Top-of-Mind Positioning," "Playbook for Selling Success in the Graphic Arts Industry," "Fire! How Marketing Got Hot," "Direct Mail Pal" and four more books published by PIA. He can be reached at (301) 404-2244 or
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