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Marketing Research Study Material

In order to being able to successfully plan and monitor your marketing activities you have to start by doing some kind of market research. Knowing your market, its needs and what drives it is an absolute necessity if you want to sell your product or service to a broader audience. Market research can be undertaken in a huge number of ways, and be more or less structured.

The Gut Feeling

If you know your business and are successful in your field, you might have the right gut feeling already for what works and does not work. Your gut feeling can be correct, but that does not mean that you should avoid doing the research as well. How big is the market? Who is your primary and secondary target audience? How much could you charge for your product in comparison to your competitors? Could you improve your product or service in some way to increase customer satisfaction and demand? How much more will I earn by making certain changes as suggested by the insights coming from the research study? These are questions that needs to be answered.

Do it Yourself or Hire Somebody?

It is almost always a good idea to hire professional help when it comes to planning your marketing. You are often tempted to “go native” when it comes to your own business. The problem is that you know your product so well that it is hard to make an honest evaluation of what should change in order to drive more and better business. An outside view is often worth its weight in gold, and will make you way more money than you might spend on a marketing consultant. And you will get the expert’s experience in other fields “for free”.

The Literature

The best place to start is by reading some Philip Kotler, who has written the standard book on marketing and the marketing mix (you should know of the 4Ps: product, price, promotion, place). Kotler’s book is a huge one, but there are some great summaries you can find online if you do not want to read all of it.

After reading Kotler, recommended further reading would be, for example: Strategic Market Research: A Guide to Conducting Research that Drives Businesses, by Anne E. Beall; Sun Tzu’s classic The Art of War, and some introduction to the art of social media marketing and data driven research, like Mark Penn’s Micro Targeting, which is less of a book about how you tweet, and more of a book about why you should tweet.


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