It is always worth taking time to think about your customers and collect as much information as you can without harming the customer experience. Here is a good way to structure information so you can understand what you do know and what you need to find out.
A couple of years ago, I (along with Andy Madeley of Swiss Peaks) asked local business in Staffordshire how much they would spend on various elements of the marketing mix if they had a £10,000 budget. The result for market research was around £500 or 0.5% which is probably more realistic for most firms than the 1% of turnover that is often cited.
In fact if you had a budget of £5,000, I would recommend spending £500 on market research and in most cases that figure would not change if your budget was £20,000.
But what does £500 (+VAT) get you these days?
The simple answer is whatever information you need to create an evidence-based marketing strategy or business plan. You can do a lot of this yourself – a good researcher may be quicker in knowing where to find information, but once you have the framework you can…
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