Getting objective feedback for your business idea
Getting objective views and comments is vital to your success so take a scientific approach to finding out what your potential customers think:
- Will they be interested in buying your product? (they need to WANT it, rather than NEED it)
Will they be prepared to pay the price you want to charge?
How far are they willing to travel to get to you?
Would they prefer to purchase online, by post, or in person?
The answers to these questions will give an indication of who your best target customers are - and it may not be who you thought they'd be!
Some ways research your market
Ask for feedback from people you know, prospective customers, wholesalers or suppliers, businesses in related industries, from online forums/networks.
Ask people individually or gather them together as a group - offer cake or lunch to encourage them to come along! Groups are great because they stimulate ideas but keep the numbers small so it's manageable. Create your questions before you start so you get everything you need from the session. You're seeking opinions rather than getting the group to agree with yours, so try to stay impartial.
Do a SWOT analysis
Identify your Stengths and Weaknesses, and the Opportunities and Threats you'll face when you take your product to market. Ask anyone who understands what you're trying to do to contribute.
DO a PEST analysis
Information on how to do a PEST analysis
Find related research and reports
Look for general economic reports and any specific reports on your industry. Search for them online or visit a local library.
Find out where to get free market research data and reports
Check out your competitors
Don’t be afraid to approach your competitors as if you’re a potential customer, or even as a real customer. The best way to find out what you’re up against is to understand what’s good and not so good about your competitors’ business. Then you’ll know how to make yourself better than them!
Formal market research can be expensive, but so can getting your product and business model wrong! So take advice from the experts but have a budget and stick to it, and have a very clear idea of what you do and don't want. The Market Research Society publishes a Directory of trusted Market Research Agencies
who adhere to the Market Research Society’s Code of Conduct.
Online market research
Doing market research online is a cost-effective way to get quick feedback from a large number of prospective customers. Online market research specialist Marketest has 10 years’ experience and over 950,000 panelists. Get a free quote for online market research
to see how cost-effective can be.