Update your market research, Tech firms

Posted on June 24, 2009. Filed under: business, information search | Tags: |

There’s more to research (and staying in business) than technological R&D.  There’s market research – and it needs to be updated.  Regularly.

The “Market Research” column by Betsy Gillette in the current issue of Innovation (June/July 2009) addresses this topic in a piece titled “Updating Your Research“.   It opens with “When you started your technology business you probably spent hours doing market research  [which] helped you determine the best market, define it, develop go-to market strategies, and position yuour product against your competition.  And now you’re successfully in the market … what’s next?”  The answer – continue doing market research! 

Major categories of  information that need frequent attention are: the industry, competitors, customers, and techology.  What are some of the things you’ll want to keep an eye on, according to Betsy?

Industry: new/revised regulations; issues driven by the economy and/or customers; collaborations that could impact your business; other changes.

Competitors: who are they? how are they perceived? competitive intelligence such as marketing practices, product prices, major customers; and more.

Customers  (yours): numbers; financial situations; needs; market positions; other information.

Technology: what technological innovations are occuring that may represent an opportunity or a threat to your business?

The column offers suggestions on how you can do some of this research yourself.  It’s an easy read; I won’t duplicate it here. 

However (to plug my own profession) this kind of ongoing market scan can be handled expertly by in-house research librarians if you’re lucky enough to employ them).  It’s also the kind of research and project that’s right up the alley of  many members of the Association of Independent Information Professionals, AIIP. ( Full disclosure, I’m a member.)  The Society of Competitive Intelligence Professionals also has some members who offer contract services, and there are other sources as well, I’m sure.

Whether you do the research yourself, or whether you contract with others to do it (leaving you free to act on the data),  be sure it gets done. –nks

Need more information?  Perhaps I can help.


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