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MARKET RESEARCH LIBS 100: Introduction to Information Literacy Bryant & Stratton College Instructor Charlene D. Shotwell, MLS
Public and private sources of statistics, demographics and data:
There are “free” or government-based sources of information that may be used for the purpose of market research. These include the Census of Population, the Economic Census, County Business Patterns, etc.
There are also private, fee-based companies that offer marketing research services, reports and other sources of data. These include Standard Rate and Data Service (SRDS), A.C. Nielsen, Plunkett Research, Claritas, J. D. Power and Associates, Arbitron radio ratings, etc.
“ Free” or government-based sources of information may give insight as to:
Age, gender, ethnicity and income levels of a geographic sector of the population.
Example: You are marketing a service to upper income females with small children, you are marketing a product that appeals to a clientele of a certain ethnicity, you are marketing a service to aging sectors of the population, etc.
Example: You want to start a non profit initiative that is aimed at helping those with lower education levels such as a literacy program.
Numbers and types of businesses in the area.
Example,: You want to open a paint and wallpaper store and are looking to open in an area that is not already saturated with them and/or you want to open in close proximity to home improvement stores in hopes of benefiting from spillover business.
“ Free” or government-based sources of information may give insight as to: Cont’d.
Housing information such as cost of housing and owner versus renter occupied status.
Example: You want to open a home improvement store and/or you want to open an insurance company that specializes in renter’s insurance.
Example: You want to start a non profit initiative that is aimed at providing health education programs in areas where there are high rates of heart disease.
Private, fee-based companies that offer market research services, reports and other sources of data may give insight as to:
Personal hobbies or interests of a geographic or demographic sector of the population.
Example: You want to open a bookstore and you are looking to find a market of avid readers, you want to open a golf supply store and are looking for a market with a large number of golfers.
What brands and labels of products or services are most popular (market share.)
Example: You are a toy company representative and you are looking to do a product tie-in with the most popular brand of children’s cereal.
What trends, media or otherwise, are influencing consumers’ spending habits and other behaviors.
Example: The popularity of the Atkin’s low carbohydrate diet a few years ago spawned a lot of “low carb” types of products. After the diet was proved to be not as healthy as originally believed, the “low carb” trend faded.
Private, fee-based companies that offer market research services, reports and other sources of data may give insight as to: Cont’d.
Outside factors that may influence a geographic or demographic sector of the population’s spending habits and other behaviors.
Example: Many families with children have two working parents and are pressed for time. These families desire healthy meals but do no have time to shop for items or to prepare meals. This has influenced the creation of “ready to make” meal kits available.
Trends regarding new or expanding companies and how those companies are influencing market segments .
Example, how ALDI Food Stores and supermarket private label food brands are currently competing with brand name foods.