The Pros & Cons of Market Research
23 Aug 2021

Market research is an essential part of what makes brands successful. Analyzing consumer behavior and market trends allows companies to capitalize on the main factors driving consumers to purchase their products. They can then optimize their strategy accordingly. Three of the many key questions market research aims to answer include: who is the target audience? What makes them buy a certain product? And, how can brands take advantage of trends to increase sales and brand awareness? In this blog, we will take a look at the pros and cons of market research as a whole.

The Pros of Market Research

Trackable Return on Investment 

The valuable insights that come from market research can allow a company to gain information about the market and make their product successful. For instance, knowledge of customer satisfaction, consumer behaviors, and competitors lead to informed strategic decisions. In the long run, brands can arm themselves with this research. 

Improved Sales

Market research allows a company to see their buyers’ wants and needs and adjust their product to meet those needs. Combining this with an increased awareness surrounding current trends and viral fads empowers a company with all the information they need to optimize their product, advertising, and business plan. Actionable strategy can lead directly to a large uptick in sales.

Increased Brand Awareness 

Knowing what people think about a brand and which audiences are aware of it is valuable information. With awareness research, brands can make decisions to increase awareness in certain target audiences and broaden the company’s reach as a whole. As a result, brands can take full advantage of tapping into markets they may not have known about previously. This can take the shape of anything from a small tweak in a company’s branding and advertising to a full-blown rebrand. Read more about brand awareness, the different kinds, and their benefits in Provoke Insights’ blog post about it.

The Drawbacks of Market Research

High Cost

Every rose has its thorn, and market research is no exception. The knowledge and insights it provides come at a cost. A market research campaign is pricey. This price tag comes from compensating researchers for the time spent researching, writing reports, and developing insights. The knowledge of target markets and trends gained from market research typically saves companies time and a lot of money in the long run. Due to this, many are willing to budget for market research firms’ services.

DIY Can Be Misleading

Market research doesn’t help a company achieve its goals if it doesn’t produce accurate results. Firms who try to do internal or ‘do-it-yourself’ market research often get faulty insights. This is usually due to a lack of experience and savvy in the field. DIY market researchers lack the necessary experience in several areas that can compromise their ability to conduct market research successfully. For example, a lack of questionnaire development expertise may lead to questions being designed improperly. Incorrectly programmed surveys can produce skewed or incorrect results. In addition, inexperience with sample selection and failure to test properly for validity and reliability of results can lead to biased conclusions. Hiring a market research firm with trained professionals is an easy way of avoiding this.

Final Thoughts

Though there are certain drawbacks with market research, including cost and technicalities surrounding DIY research, the benefits are undeniable. When looking at the pros and cons of market research, it’s clear that brands should outline their needs and goals first. Ultimately, hiring a market research firm can set brands above the competition, better identify targets, and result in short-term and long-term ROI.

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What’s the Difference Between Unaided and Aided Brand Awareness?
18 Aug 2021

As retailers all over the world gear up for the post-pandemic surge in consumer spending, many are taking advantage of the wide variety of benefits market and branding research have to offer. Two of the most important aspects of branding research are competitive intelligence and brand awareness. In particular, analyzing consumers’ ability to recognize your company, product, or advertisement in comparison to key competitors is a strong indicator of how well-positioned your brand is. Aided and unaided brand awareness research both produce well-developed metrics for gaining a competitive advantage. Though they differ, the benefits of both are undeniably valuable at any stage of brand strategizing.

Unaided Awareness

Unaided awareness is the percentage of respondents aware of a product, brand, or advertising top-of-mind without assistance. This open-ended question asks respondents generally what brands they are familiar with in an industry. For example, an unaided awareness question asks,  “Which brands first come to mind when you think about clothing?” and gives participants the opportunity to input, unprompted, which brands they are most familiar with. This method of questioning measures brand recall.

Aided Awareness

Aided awareness evaluates prompted knowledge of a brand. Respondents are shown a list of brands and asked to mark down which ones, if any, they are aware of. This tests brand recognition. Aided awareness must always come after unaided awareness in a survey to maintain the integrity of awareness without prompting. It is also important to randomize the list of brands for each respondent in order to prevent sequence bias, which leads to the top choice being selected more often simply because it’s listed first.

Depending on the type of research a brand takes on, companies might seek out different insights. For example, brands seeking brand tracking research may evaluate region specific brands by adjusting survey options based on where a given respondent lives.

Two Sets of Data Are Better Than One

Total brand awareness is a valuable metric for companies to have. Adding the percentage of respondents that recalled a brand in unaided awareness with the respondents that recognized a brand in aided awareness (while removing duplicates) is a way of measuring total awareness.

Building brand awareness is crucial because 59% of consumers first check familiar brands when setting out to buy a new product. Furthermore, consumers cannot consider products they are unaware of. The more aware of a brand a consumer is, the more comfortable and the more likely they are to try it when browsing through the market.

Brand awareness research not only produces valuable information about how a brand stacks up against the competition, but also can acquire data that has the power to help drive sales, improve brand perception, open new channels, platforms and points of access to target audiences and more.


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