When first contemplating a purchase of any sort, most people start with: “How much will this cost?” Of course, the answer depends on a variety of factors: “How are you going to be using the product?” “Does it make sense to purchase a top of the line model with enhanced features or will a basic one provide all you will need?” “Will the product be used only once or will it be utilized with regularity?”
When talking about undergoing a market research project, the issues are no different. Multiple elements must be considered before a definitive market research cost can be ascertained. Some of the top things to consider include who you want to survey, how you will connect with them and what will you do with the data you collect?
Simply put, here are the top 6 questions to ask:
Who do you want to survey?
Do you want to target potential customers or existing ones? Usually, companies opt to separate the two in order to avoid bias during discussion. Having more than one focus group, survey, or interview can affect the final cost of the market research project.
Do you already know who you want to target or will the research firm need to compile that list for you?
Having your own contact list will save the market research firm resources and time, and, thus, drive the cost of the market research down.
Where is your target segment located?
If the majority of your intended sample base is local, it might change the way in which the market research firm chooses to connect with them. For instance, similarly regional participants could be interviewed face-to-face or as part of a local focus group. International applicants or those in multiple locations might be better reached by a telephone survey or direct mail campaign.
Is the target segment comprised of members of the general population or of a more senior, professional one?
Talking with and collecting data from college students or stay-at-home moms will differ from surveying a group of CEOs. The questions to ask and type of contact will be based on who you want to reach and how accessible they will be to the market research firm.
Do you want to use qualitative or quantitative measures or a mixture of the two to gather the data?
Qualitative measures like focus groups, interviews, observations and ethnographic reports (those resources which provide a company with better understanding of personal wants and needs and how to provide those to its customers) are frequently more labor-intensive than quantitative research like surveys and polls (which provide more easily mensurable or numerical feedback) and, therefore, likely more expensive.
How will you use the data collected?
Will the information garnered from the project be analyzed and reported within the company internally? Will it need to be distributed to the public? To shareholders? Will it need to be integrated with CRM software or a contact management database? All of these options change the cost of market research.
Interested in learning more about the cost of market research? Contact Communications for Research today to speak with our co-CEO Colson Steber. With 20 years of experience as the top market research firm in St. Louis, Colson can help you ascertain the exact scope and price of your project today.
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