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The Importance of Market Research in Today's Market

By Shreya Krishnan, Head of Marketing & Communications, First Advantage

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Shreya Krishnan, Head of Marketing & Communications, First Advantage

India and the global world of business and entrepreneurship is growing in leaps and bounds in terms of its economics and opportunities and as we are exploding into the realm of the digital era. Market Research is becoming the secret weapon that helps with insights and a snapshot of the big picture for businesses.

As a strong backbone of business strategy, market research helps identify and understand the market scenario the business operates in and helps build a framework. In the complex world of business that we maneuver today, it helps gain insight into the target markets, gathers detailed information about the customer and exposes the competition and the competitive landscape. 

Social and opinion research helps elaborate the business purpose and validates the premise and idea in context to the market. All forms of market research aid B2B and B2C companies in their process of learning and understanding the changing dynamics of their businesses with focus on the shifting needs of today’s consumer. Big data and analytics, a more diagnostic approach to research deep dives into breaking down data packets into consumable content for the business to use in implementing effective changes in their lifecycle.

Predictive behavioral analytics, consumer prerequisite information, motivation analysis, choice modelling and product perception testing are some of the new age applications of market research that is setting precedent and making market research a key strategic investment.

Market Research Consultants are crucial today to form a multi-dimensional view of the business and the way it is structured to grow, at every stage of
its lifecycle.

• How has the Market Research Consulting Evolved Over the Period in Indian Market?

Starting with the FMCG wave, market research which helped understand the target audience and what drove a consumer to buy, moved into the MNC era when companies invested in research to help them make better informed business decisions. As the awareness increased, more companies began to adopt research mechanisms both qualitative and quantitative to help aid their strategic investments and drive the business to success.

With the entrepreneurship era and the e-commerce boom, followed by collaborative economy, the world shifted on its business axis into a new age with companies both small and mid-sized becoming empowered to commission research to aid a better outcome. Start-up ecosystems have benefitted massively by deploying market research methodologies.

Research is no more restricted to FMCG brands or retail alone but pans the world of business with B2B, B2C, product and services companies relying on statistics and behavioral patterns to predict and analyze buying patterns.

Market research has evolved over time into a complex mechanism of understanding the personality of every consumer and catering to their specific need. Aided by technology the process has become more efficient and effective and businesses are reaping the benefits of this newfound insight. With technology enablers, there is more reach now than ever before and so is the access to information and hence more exposure.

• What are the Future Scopes for this Industry?

The canvas is unlimited as most businesses are making research an intrinsic part of their plan and strategy. As traditionally observed, the market research industry has grown in terms of industry segments and new businesses adopting this process across all sizes of companies. 

Brand assessment, Sales analysis, sales methods, product management, lead generation, advertising research, syndicated research are all important areas of focus for companies and market research plays a major role in these areas of business.

Market Research can also be bifurcated by business mechanisms like marketing research, competition analysis, client satisfaction, media measurement, industry/space analysis, retail shop floor assessment. Newer age mechanisms of application of research and the big data and analytics world open up an entire spectrum of opportunities in the space.

When done right, market research can solve business problems and point the right direction to be taken and with technology in the digital era, the market research industry is all set to make its next big boom…

• What Success can a Market Research Consulting Bring in to an Organization and How Relevant is its Role?

A research consultant in any organization today is crucial to its strategy and planning. Designing, constructing and executing research projects and deriving the right insights and navigating the data and analytics are critical to the outcome and can make or break the business. Business can be made more competitive, productive and profitable with well-planned research methods that map the plan to the end consumer, find the gaps and fix the problems based on application of the information derived from the research project.

A Market Research Consultant can bring in both external and internal data, qualitative or quantitative in nature and derive insights and analysis from client specific satisfaction matrices all the way to employer brand quotient and maintain a pulse of positioning for the business or organization.

The relevance of this role is unquestionable in the context of the new age of businesses.

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