If you’re prepared to beat the challenges your next step is research. Research should be thorough and cover a wide range of topics as it will implicate the strategy and tactics you implemented in your business.
Major research topics should include:
- Target audience;
- Who are your customers?
- Where do they come from?
- What are their current habits?
- Market trends;
- What’s happened in the last few years?
- Is the industry stable?
- Is there a large possibility for growth?
- Explore the employment conditions; is there a demand for employees?
- Production process;
- What has worked well for other businesses?
- How can you operate efficiently?
- What are the expenses associated with production/operations?
- Your competition;
- What are they doing?
- What has or has not worked for them?
- What is their competitive edge and how can you address that?
60 second tip: why do market research?
Why do we research?
We conduct research for the same reason we study history; to learn from what has happened in the past. By researching businesses within certain industries you have the opportunity to observe what has succeeded or failed, which areas of business you could excel in and which areas may require more research or planning.
Research also provides a clear image of who your customer will be. You can define their demographics, including;
- Geographic location
- Income range
How to define your target audience
By defining demographics you gain insight into your average customer, providing the ability to effectively target them through sales and marketing techniques. You can discover their reason for choosing your service and focus on these motives in future plans.
The Small Business Development Corporation of Western Australia reported effective research will assist in:
- Targeting customers
- Understanding your customers
- Setting targets
- Developing strategies
- Examining and solving business problems
- Preparing for expansion
- Identifying business opportunities.
Businesses that fail to conduct sufficient research may not operate efficiently and have a high chance of failing. Planning and tactics could target the wrong audience, processes may be ineffective or costs can exceed expectations. If you have conducted effective research, your findings will dictate planning and optimise the possibility of succeeding.
By joining a franchise, the research is likely to already be conducted by the franchisor. They will be familiar with the market and understand trends, processes are already established and the audience is familiar with the brand. Our research is ongoing, it covers our competitors, customers, operations and technology to ensure we remain competitive and effectively provide our service to our customers.
If you are interested in becoming a franchisee, please visit franchise.hotondo.com.au.