“You are uniquely unqualified to talk to your customers. You simply don’t think they way they think.”
Jay Ehret caught my attention with this very strong statement. I don’t entirely agree with him – everyone MUST talk to their customers! But there is an important truth here, which highlights the importance of a formal market research methodology and the key role a good market researcher can play in establishing better communication with your customers.
The problem is that when you are so close to your product, to your company’s initiatives, and to what you think about your product, you may miss what your customers are trying to tell you. Because, as Jay says, you KNOW TOO MUCH, TOO WELL.
In this all-too-common situation, a good market researcher can offer a valuable outside perspective on your company and on your product.
I recently got an email from a client after presenting a report. It perfectly captures the value of Dimensional Research:
“I must admit that I was very surprised at how good the results of this project were, especially since you hadn’t worked directly with our solutions or this specific target market previously. In the course of this project, you learned what’s going on with our market well enough that you articulated what’s happening better than we have been able to ourselves. Thank you.”
Of course, I appreciated the feedback, but I wasn’t surprised. A good market researcher quickly figures out what’s going on, in part because they don’t know as much as you do. External perspective can give important insights, not because you don’t know the information, but because you know so much MORE than the basics, that the really key information can get hidden.
Applying a formal market research methodology can bring important information about your business to light and provide valuable clarification. You can then act on that information, combined with your deep knowledge of the product, to drive business results.