Why is market research necessary?

Before we try to understand why market research is necessary, first, we must understand what it actually is. As cheesy as it sounds, it is actually very important to understand the core meaning of what market research stands for; because it is way more than just a simple Google definition.

What is market research?

Simply put, Market Research is the process of gathering, understanding and analyzing information about a market. This includes a particular product or service that would be introduced to the market or already existing goods. Furthermore, this process requires us to dig deeper to better understand and/or predict the sales potential in that market.

It should also include the potential customers, new or already existing and goes deeper to find their spending patterns and habits, always keeping in mind what are the needs of your customers or potential customers. Lastly, knowing your target market and getting to know that industry as a whole. It is always beneficial to know about the competition you might be facing, which already makes the competition to loosen up.

Market research brings a ton of advantages to your company. Therefore, investing in it is a great idea, it proves to be more beneficial than secondary market research. Which means, you collect data from existing market researches done for your industry. Although, it might prove to be handy and convenient but the source of information and the information may not be that valid or might not apply to your business traditions and ways.

Following are the critical benefits your company would gain through market research:

  • Potential customers (understanding who your next customer may be)
  • Existing customer (making them feel heard and satisfying their wants)
  • New strategies & current challenges (pretty self-explanatory)
  • Setting realistic goals (we should shoot for the stars but realistically)

These are just a few of the many benefits you can achieve with conducting proper market research. Moreover, it depends on how greatly you use these benefits for the success of your company. Making the most out of it would prove to be beneficial in ways one could only imagine and would put you at least two steps ahead of your competition.

Happy customer, happy life

Good market research will let you know about how happy your customers are and what updates or future expectations they may be expecting from you. Often companies ignore the wants and needs of the customers, who actually made it possible for them to reach their goals. Regardless, the top-class companies are always open for feedback and will listen to their loyal customers like no one else.

It is almost as simple as listening to your customers and letting them know they have been heard, resulting in long-term loyalty.

A market research helps you determine and predict the ways your competitor will approach and according to that you can strategize your next move carefully. How much to spend on promotion, where to promote, what would be the best price, which target audience all of these strategies can be assisted by proper market research. Moreover, you would already know the likes and dislikes of your customers, accordingly you could plan your approach and prepare your tools.

Furthermore, not only does it help you strategize towards the market, it also helps you correct your strategies within your business. With proper market research, you might stumble upon challenges within your own company. This could include departments that you have been investing a lot into or pressurizing, which do not even affect the market significantly. You might also discover some unnecessary steps that you might be taking in production or in other departments, which could help you cut down costs.

Last but not least, it helps you acknowledge newer opportunities. Markets or opportunities you would have not thought of approaching or hitting in the near future, could seem very well interesting now. Moreover, they may even seem like the next big project that you want to dive right into.

Market research is very vital for your own company. Although, there are tons of market research already available and done for different sectors. It could prove to be useful but it is very arguable how beneficial it could be for your particular company. Market researches done on a general level are ofteen not very beneficial compared to personalized market research.

Author: Syed Bukhari

Find out more about our market research services www.katrium.eu/research

5 Key Insights into GDPR, an interview with Juha Oravala, Managing Partner of D-fence

D-Fence is a Finnish company that provides companies of both small and medium size support services in making sure their company is GDPR complaint. Many companies are facing problems with becoming GDPR compliant, by using the services of a company like D-Fence they can avoid problems and fines in the future.

In order to take a closer look at the new GDPR law made by the European Union  we asked Juha Oravala, managing partner at D-Fence for an interview and asked him some key questions about the General Data Protection Act. (GDPR)

  1. “What is in your opinion the most important aspect of the new GDPR law?”

– Juha Oravala: “Increased safety of all registrants i.e. people in the European Union. Including companies and protecting all, private person or whatever entity. On the other hand, many organizations, small business especially think it costs a lot of extra work for them, if not handled cleverly and agile. At least here in Finland, a lot of companies think GDPR is denying work or restricting it, this is due to the lack of information. This causes confusion and miscommunication and miscalculation, that’s the bad side to it.”

  1. “Are you confident that businesses will be willing and able to comply with this regulation?”

– Juha Oravala: “Yes, I am, there is no other choice. I believe the demand doesn’t come from fines but from the clients and partners. Such as having a wide range of network might help you get to a pool of right consumers for your product or service.”

  1. “What tools does your company utilize to help make customers GDPR compliant?”

– Juha Oravala: “We have an easy GDPR service to take control of all the GDPR requirements easily and cost-effectively. Everything is already done, templates already filled in, all they have to do is walkthrough the data flow. There is a customer register they open it and there are clear instructions for them. First, they simply get to understand the regulation or ACT, you can’t follow if you don’t understand. Through our service they easily understand what’s it about, fill the required information if not filled earlier and it’s that easy. That’s why it’s called easy GDPR cause it’s easy, doesn’t take a lot of time and easy to keep up with the requirements.

One of the reasons why it’s popular is because it is easy to use, we got 500 clients this Spring itself. We also offer expert support other than GDPR, assistance to questions such as what should they do for marketing campaigns and so on. The price depends on the company so for a company with 50 employees it would cost 1,200€/year while a company with 200 employees would cost 2,500€/year, relatively a small price for the services you get.”

  1. “Does the GDPR affect companies differently in different EU countries?”

– Juha Oravala: “ guess more or less its same, but does it affect the same way. Maybe there are national habits how you follow certain laws, some countries follow it very accurately, others less accurately, so it’s hard to say. I think it’s more like risk-management, if you are an entrepreneur you will confront risk everyday in business as well as on a larger scale. Why take more risks, since less risk results in better sleep.”

  1. “What challenges does GDPR present and what do you think the future will bring with these new regulations?”

– Juha Oravala: “It will escalate in long-term to the global policies regarding data security. The rest of the world looks upon Europe, we are an example for others. So, if all goes well the rest of the world will follow us, since data is the new oil and is very important. This would ensure safety and would benefit everyone not the criminals but since there have been cyber threats and big amount of money has been lost to criminal acts, in long-term it is in everyone’s benefit. I think it will escalate and the rest of the world will follow us with a few exceptions of the tax paradise, those might not follow. However, in short-term, there will be a lot of hassle going and when the first fine is given, rest of the companies would open their eyes and put everything together, there are always some companies that would do it only when it is really necessary.”

We would like to thank D-Fence for the interview, please visit https://www.d-fence.fi for more information.

If you are interested to hear more about out international market research services please click here.

Why consider multiculturalism at work?

“Monument to Multiculturalism” by F. Perilli. Located in Toronto. Photo by S. Meritt.n

During the last few decades, the world has become significantly smaller and flatter. Rapid technological development has made traveling and international communications easier and more affordable. Integration and globalization heavily affect both individuals and businesses. Now organizations are able to be involved in international activities, regardless of the company size and field of business. Among other changes, globalization has made companies consider multiculturalism at work as a necessity or a good way to make international business activities more acceptable and reachable.

Who needs multiculturalism at work?

Globalization affects businesses of all sizes and fields. If global corporations’ have clear reasons to adopt multiculturalism, then with small and medium-sized enterprises the situation is less clear.

According to the study of the European Commission, the majority of SMEs have reported cultural awareness and diversity to be as important for them, as it is for the global corporations. Indeed, even if the company’s area of operation covers only local market, it is still a stakeholder at the global market, which is a multinational structure. If multiculturalism in the international market is a necessity, not a matter of choice, it is that also in the local market.

Despite the acknowledgment of the importance of diversity, only some SMEs have adopted the concept, due to the lack of effective management or the risk of failure being too high.

However, even if multiculturalism adoption feels like a doubtful move for a small or medium size enterprise, it can be worth taking a risk. Surely, in the modern world, “one of the biggest risks is not taking risks”.

Why take a risk?

First of all, within an international team, members learn how to deal with different people. It is challenging but beneficial to a company, as it gives a broader access to potential customers and suppliers in the domestic region, if not in international markets. Diversity at workplace can give a possibility to differentiate better connection with, for example, cultural and linguistic minorities.

Importantly, cultural diversity can be a company´s lifesaver. The international characteristics of the team allow its members to receive diverse experience, as well as knowledge about potential solutions to various problems. People from various cultures can arise with the best solution, as they look at a problem from different angles. It can be an advantage for the company, as the problem-solving process turns more thorough.

Multicultural environment can increase the productivity of the team. Increasing productivity is always a big goal and challenge for management. There is always the place for improvement. However, pulling together all the strengths of individual workers, who are related either to their cultural backgrounds or their personalities, can significantly strengthen the ability of the team to solve various tasks faster and more effectively.

Three basic steps to effective multiculturalism

One important question is: how to get there? We have analyzed different strategies and approaches and picked up three to try at first.

The first important step is to ensure strong support from the CEO. In this case, support does not mean a top-down decision making but mentoring the whole process.

However, CEO alone does not define the whole corporate culture. For the whole organization to truly change, involving every single member is required – from the top manager to each employee. The CEO, nevertheless, has to have a strong vision on opportunities, to gain the credibility about the idea among the employees.

As mentioned before, it is important to take a risk. However, taking a risk does not mean to be exuberant. There is no need to start with such a change that requires solid investments and, thus, can lead to a huge loss. The establishment of diversity can start with small experiments at the lowest level.

Last but not least, focusing on the strengths that each employee can bring to the table is crucial. It is wise to take time and dig deeper, to understand how workers with different backgrounds and communication abilities can give to the working process. The downside to remember is that all employees are individuals, who do not have to necessarily reflect all the qualities common for their backgrounds.

To conclude, nowadays it is important to take risks and try to expand horizons, also in business. Multiculturalism can positively affect the performances and reputation of a company, in the regional market and globally. Thanks to the CEO, new opportunities can rise and ready to catch, as long as they do not affect the company´s safety. Moreover, new international employees can bring high value to the company, keeping in mind that every person is individual, regardless the nationality and background.