In its most basic definition, market research is a prepared effort to collect information about markets or a group of people.  Oftentimes it is viewed as solely that, information used to solve only one piece of an organizational puzzle, but this is not true.  It goes well beyond just gathering statistics. Research findings can provide insight into all facets of an organization beyond just marketing, including human resources, finance, management and its customers.  If I were to tell you that only 19 percent of your customers are satisfied with the services your company provides, there’s a lot more going on behind that statistic.  Market research acts as an essential component to providing relevant insight into all phases of your business.

The process of market research can be broken down into one fundamental action.  That action is asking questions.  Although not formalized, market research happens every minute of everyday around the world and we’re not even speaking about the commissioned projects to market research firms like RMS.  When your friend texts you and asks you how you liked the last episode of “The Office” on NBC? Market research.  Or when you go onto IMDB (Internet Movie Database) to look up the top rated movie in a certain genre?  Market research.  Or even when your significant other cooks dinner for you and asks you how it tastes?  100 percent honest market research.  The only difference is market research is a systematic process for asking these questions.

But the key to good market research is going beyond the statistics.  A good market research firm works in cooperation with your business to develop strategies to enhance your decision-making.  Interpreting the results and providing clients with actionable recommendations is part of the bigger picture.  Market research provides a roadmap to a solution and helps you get there.  Whether at RMS, or any research firm, reporting solely on the fact that only 19 percent of your customers are satisfied with your services should not be the end result.  The focus should be on providing actionable recommendations to convert that 19 percent into 91 percent.

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