Market research for small businesses


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A 2 hour workshop which takes people through a 7 step plan for doing DIY market research

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  • Talk about the Coffee Republic Book here.
  • Talk about the Coffee Republic Book here.
  • Market research for small businesses

    1. 1. Market research Business Start Up Old Broadcasting House 24 February 2010 <ul><li>Rob Greenland, The Social Business </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>
    2. 2. What we’ll do today <ul><li>Look at how to do DIY market research </li></ul><ul><li>Talk about why market research matters </li></ul><ul><li>Look at what you can do - step by step </li></ul><ul><li>Come up with practical things we can all do </li></ul>
    3. 3. I work with social entrepreneurs <ul><li>Training - market research, marketing, social business planning </li></ul><ul><li>Consultancy - social enterprise </li></ul><ul><li>Lots of work with start-ups </li></ul><ul><li>Writing </li></ul>Photo from Ant Smallwood via
    4. 4. Named UK’s top social enterprise blog
    5. 5. DIY market research <ul><li>You’ll never feel like you’ve done enough </li></ul><ul><li>But don’t make the perfect the enemy of the possible </li></ul><ul><li>Someone else might do it better - but at a price </li></ul><ul><li>There’s every chance you’ll do nothing </li></ul><ul><li>So, do what you can, and do it well </li></ul>
    6. 6. Why bother? <ul><li>It can help you to decide whether setting up this business is a good idea </li></ul><ul><li>It can help you to understand your market better - find your niche, identify opportunities </li></ul><ul><li>It can help you to understand your customers - and serve them better </li></ul>
    7. 7. Step 1 - Decide what market you are in <ul><li>Ask what your customer needs. </li></ul><ul><li>In small groups, discuss what customer needs you meet/aim to meet. </li></ul>Picture from flydime via
    8. 8. Why this is helpful <ul><li>Focusing on needs helps you to think more broadly about who your competitors are. </li></ul><ul><li>You might also identify people you could collaborate with </li></ul><ul><li>It immediately focuses your research on your customers - if you understand them, you have a greater chance of success. </li></ul>
    9. 9. Step 2: Agree aim <ul><li>Don’t do research for the sake of doing research. </li></ul><ul><li>Ask yourself: What do I want to find out? What question(s) do I want to answer? </li></ul><ul><li>eg: My aim is to find out as much as I can about how businesses in Yorkshire are helped to reduce their CO2 emissions. </li></ul><ul><li>Estimate size of market, understand opportunities, find my niche, identify unmet needs…… </li></ul>
    10. 10. Step 3: Agree how to keep track of what you find out <ul><li>Although our approach is logical, the way you will find things out won’t be so logical </li></ul><ul><li>A book? </li></ul><ul><li>A research blog (password protected)? </li></ul>Photo from koalazymonkey via
    11. 11. Step 4: Decide how you will analyse your research <ul><li>Is there anyone else you can discuss things with? </li></ul><ul><li>Research on its own has limited value - it’s discussing it - and then taking decisions based on it - that matter most. </li></ul>
    12. 12. Step 5 - Start your research <ul><li>Market as a whole </li></ul><ul><li>Customers </li></ul><ul><li>Competitors </li></ul><ul><li>Collaborators </li></ul>
    13. 13. Your market <ul><li>What would it be useful to know? </li></ul><ul><li>How will I find things out? </li></ul><ul><li>Secondary research </li></ul><ul><li>Primary research </li></ul>
    14. 14. Your market - ideas <ul><li>Mintel, Keynote,…. </li></ul><ul><li>Journals, Magazines, Newspapers… </li></ul><ul><li>How-to books, biographies… </li></ul><ul><li>Springwise </li></ul><ul><li>Other ideas….? </li></ul>
    15. 15. Your customers <ul><li>What would it be useful to know? </li></ul><ul><li>How will I find things out? </li></ul><ul><li>Secondary research </li></ul><ul><li>Primary research </li></ul>
    16. 16. Customers - ideas <ul><li>Mintel, Keynote - customer segmentation </li></ul><ul><li>Journals, Magazines, Newspapers… </li></ul><ul><li>Talk to people! Ask them questions, look at their current behaviour, eg what they buy. </li></ul><ul><li>Questionnaires, online surveys….other ideas? </li></ul>
    17. 17.
    18. 18. Your competitors <ul><li>What would it be useful to know? </li></ul><ul><li>How will I find things out about them? </li></ul><ul><li>Secondary research </li></ul><ul><li>Primary research - eg mystery shop etc </li></ul>
    19. 19. Competitors - think about… <ul><li>Try to think about who may enter the market - as well as current competitors </li></ul><ul><li>Assess your competitors - what do they seem good at - not so good at? </li></ul><ul><li>Where might there be opportunities? Can you identify a niche for your business? </li></ul>
    20. 20. Collaborators <ul><li>Who could we work with to serve our customers better? How could we benefit? What could we offer? </li></ul><ul><li>Who could help us to establish ourselves in this market? </li></ul>
    21. 21. Step 6: Research  Intelligence <ul><li>Review what you’ve found out </li></ul><ul><li>You might find it helpful to do this with other people - can you work with eachother - set up a research circle? </li></ul><ul><li>Try mind mapping it. </li></ul>
    22. 22. Research Mind Map
    23. 23. Step 7: Make judgments, take decisions <ul><li>What are your conclusions, based on what you have discovered? </li></ul><ul><li>What are you going to do as a result of what you have found out? </li></ul><ul><li>Can you answer your original question? </li></ul>
    24. 24. To recap <ul><li>Decide what market your are in </li></ul><ul><li>Agree the aim of your research </li></ul><ul><li>Decide how to keep track of your research </li></ul><ul><li>Decide how you will analyse your research </li></ul><ul><li>Start your research - MCCC </li></ul><ul><li>Turn your research into intelligence </li></ul><ul><li>Make judgments - take decisions </li></ul>
    25. 25. Don’t stop now <ul><li>Research is an ongoing process. </li></ul><ul><li>Keep listening - stay curious </li></ul><ul><li>Your market, your customers, competitors, collaborators, will all keep evolving. </li></ul>From quinn.anya via flickr
    26. 26. Questions and Comments From db*photography via flickr
    27. 27. What will you do next?
    28. 28. @TheSocBiz