Market Research vs. Marketing Research
Posted on: Tuesday, September 27th, 2011
|The terms “market research” and “marketing research”, while related to and inter-connected in the field of marketing, are two very different forms of work in determining what a business should be doing in introducing a new product or service to a potential customer segment.
The American Marketing Association has two formal definitions for each activity, and these are:
Market Research: The systematic gathering, recording, and analyzing of data with respect to a particular market, where market refers to a specific customer group in a specific geographic area.
Marketing Research: The function that links the consumer, customer, and public to the marketer through information–information used to identify and define marketing opportunities and problems; generate, refine, and evaluate marketing actions; monitor marketing performance; and improve understanding of marketing as a process. Marketing research specifies the information required to address these issues, designs the method for collecting information, manages and implements the data collection process, analyzes the results, and communicates the findings and their implications.
If you are like me, your eyes probably glazed over when trying to digest each of these definitions. Yet understanding the meaning and difference is key, especially if you are a small business preparing to make an investment to gather quality information to confirm your product’s viability and how to reach a target customer. So let’s simplify:
Market research is, quite simply, research into a specific market for a specific product. The over-riding question that is answered in detail is: “Is there a type of customer in this geography that will buy my product?” Market research establishes whether the answer is yes or no, and also looks at the spending habits of the target customer as well as analyze your competition (among other things). Market research shows whether a connection is possible between the product and the customer.
Marketing research is about researching the marketing process that will make that connection. What is the product’s message that will appeal to the target customer? What are the avenues of communication (traditional advertising, internet marketing, events etc) to let your future customer know that your business and your product exist? And, what will make your product stand out from your competitors?
Market research establishes whether a specific product will meet a customer need. Marketing research shows the best ways to make the customer aware of the product and why they need it. Both types or research are necessary to support your success in delivering your product to market.
To find out more on how OnTarget’s market research and marketing research can help your business, contact Louie Pateropoulos at 416 219 0905 or email me.