Competition is only increasing, so understanding your target market is essential. Marketing teams typically conduct research for past, present, and future markets to develop a marketing strategy. With different markets, including different customer profiles, there is often an array of strategies to consider and implement. We are no longer in a one strategy or one campaign type of market. The reality is that a product, service, or company has the ability to cater to many different types of people. Understanding each and every market seems overwhelming, but that is why leveraging the appropriate research tools is vital.
Thankfully, businesses are no longer relying on traditional (and oftentimes tedious) research strategies. Conducting focus groups and handing out surveys is not necessary, and there are more efficient ways to understand a market. Companies can also utilize market research to detect future opportunities and threats, which has the ability to shift the entire direction of a business. Finding untapped markets can do the same, in which a company will cater to a specific market that is left behind by an industry. Marketers realize that understanding these niche markets have the ability to significantly increase ROI, rather than targeting saturated markets.
We understand why market research is important, but not every business can afford to fund an impressive market research project. However, there are free options that can still transform an organization.
Google Trends: This platform shows you what people are searching for on Google, which is currently the most popular search engine in the world. It has the ability to track the popularity of trends over time. All you have to do is search a term or topic, and will be able to view how many people searched for a specific topic in any time period. There is also a line graph, making it an easy to use and visually appealing platform.
Facebook Page Insights: With almost 3 billion users on Facebook, it is an essential platform to take advantage of. Most businesses have the ability to successfully market on the site, including paid ads or just by creating a business page. This tool shows audience insights, post performance, and page health. Engagement will display who liked your page, why, comments, and likes. By viewing this data, companies can understand how to increase engagement and with whom.
Think With Google: Google is yet again a powerful tool in the marketing world. The platform utilizes its own data and research, which can help with major marketing decisions. Search the platform to understand marketing trends and view consumer behavior with a wide range of statistics. Although it is an easy to use platform, keep in mind that Think With Google is limited to marketing studies.
Living Facts: The Pew Research Center has developed a research-based platform called Living Facts. This site provides an array of American opinions in the form of statistics, infographics, and videos. Understand what Americans think of religion, family, health, work, and other essential topics. This platform receives data from reputable organizations, which each contribute to the wide range of information offered.
US Census Bureau: This may be an obvious market research tool, but is essential in order to understand the United States market. The website allows users to search the website for free, which consists of 130 surveys per year. Filter by age, location, time, income, ect to receive the most accurate results for your research. You can even use your company’s NAICS code to see where and with whom your industry is the most popular, revealing new target markets.
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