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TIPS: Market Research on the Cheap

Update (Oct 28, 2013):  I just found this great online course on Market Research for Small Business/Entrepreneurs.  Best part, it’s FREE.  A definite must see: http://premium.docstoc.com/c/77/ch/483/l/1967/Welcome-to-the-Course

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Romy and I have mentioned many times the importance of talking to consumers (not friends and family) and doing your market research.  Market research informs decisions on product development, packaging, not to mention, it just makes good business sense. One of our readers and rock-star entrepreneur, Antoinette de Janasz of Twooth Timer, shared this great article  from Penny Redlin of Insights Discovered about how to do market research on the cheap (complete with resources and tips!).

Coming from someone whose first career was in market research, Penny is spot on with her tips!  Here are snippets that I thought was particularly insightful to our readers.

The role of market research…

” That said, it is often overlooked either because it’s believed to be too costly or not truly necessary. Truth is, market research is one of the most important activities a company can pursue. It illuminates opportunities. It delineates opinions. It offers direction. Market research for all its benefits is not only necessary but can be done affordably.” 

Talk to consumers and retailers…

“I recommend creating two groups –– one panel of retailers and one panel of consumers.  This will ensure you are getting a well-rounded point of view as it pertains to your competitive environment…”

Link to the the Insights Discovered article:  http://insightsdiscovered.wordpress.com/2012/06/12/market-research-on-the-cheap-2/

Do you have any creative market research techniques to share?

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