The means of conducting marketing research have improved over the years. Nowadays, we no longer depend so gravely on ads nor risk profit losses because of bad decisions. Some things never change however, and there are some old-fashioned tactics that are still in general use today. Long before E-bay and Amazon, businesses have been conducting marketing research with the idea that if they could get into their customers’ heads, they could sell better. Overtime, many marketing research techniques were developed, a number of which are still in wide use today. Surveying is perhaps the most widely used marketing research techniques alongside customer-feedback polls. Other marketing research techniques such as brand associative reviews, ad-marketing, and brand comparisons are still in wide use as well.
Sometimes referred to as consumer based or business-to-business based research, marketing research techniques are also divided into qualitative or quantitative categories. Consumer-based marketing research techniques focus on opinions and suggestions given by customers as potential keys for product improvement, while business-to-business research involves outwitting competitive companies. Systematic and objective, marketing research techniques can sometimes be sneaky.
One of the most well-used marketing research techniques is the creation and dissemination of surveys. Personal interviews, online surveys and telephone surveys are just some of the mediums employed. While a lot of people simply ignore surveys, this isn’t much of a loss for companies since surveying is relatively cheap especially since it’s now conducted online.
The second most common marketing research technique is centered at a focus group. Focus groups are a certain niche of individuals to which a product is targeted, and focus group research involves conducting conversations with the hopes of attaining feedback regarding a preferred product. This technique is quite similar to a personal interview.
While surveys and interviews are accurate to some degree, they are not infallible which is why most companies prefer to see consumers in action to better gauge the strength of a certain product or lack thereof. This process is within the range of observational research and field trials. One of the monitoring tactics employed by certain businesses is the subtle monitoring of product choices in malls or supermarkets to ferret out the top sellers from the average products. Other marketing research techniques include field trials, which, as the name suggests is the trial run for an experimental product prior to full-scale production. Marketing research techniques allow companies to make better decisions resulting in sounder business ventures and lesser risks.