Defining Market Research Problems | xoxoday (2023)

Market research can only be useful when respondents are engaged and honestly answer customer questions. Understanding the problems when conducting market research and the methods to overcome them leads to better results.

Good market research data helps the customer to make the right decisions. Optimal respondent engagement is vital to getting good quality market research responses. Framing the market research problem well ensures that the client gets the data that answers their questions.

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Problems in carrying out market studies

Market research is a vital method by which companies listen to what their target audiences have to say. If companies don't conduct market research, the only feedback they will get from their customers will be negative feedback. This is because people are more likely to contact a business to file a complaint than for any other reason.

Market research is also a means of evaluating the opinions of potential customers and the target audience. It guides marketing and product development in an organization.

"Marketing without data is like driving with your eyes closed." -Dan Zarrella

1. Get access to survey participants

The interviewee must be focused and interested in the questions being asked. Responses must be accurate and timely. This focus, interest, timeliness, and accuracy is called participant engagement. It's what keeps the respondent from randomly clicking on answers instead of answering them. The good participation of the participants is vital for the quality of the data collected in a research.

One of the most common ways to measure participant engagement is to measure the time it takes to answer questions. A participant who expands on questions earlier than necessary to read the question is not optimally engaged. A participant should take enough time to read and understand the question before answering.

2. Interviewees who make sense for the investigation

Market research is only useful when the people surveyed have the right demographics. Defining the target audience correctly is a market research problem that can be solved with foresight.

A market researcher needs to define the attributes of the target audience, such as age, gender, location, income, education, job, marital status, ethnicity, etc. The market research strategy must be tailored to target the right audience. When the respondents that market research attracts are from an irrelevant demographic, it defeats the purpose of the entire exercise.

"Win who understands the customer better." -Mike Gospe

3. How to choose what's important and what's not

Market research is meaningful only when the market research company uses multiple and holistic data sources. Data must be in the proper context and have meaning for the study. Often the problem in market research is too much data in response to "What is the market research problem you are facing?"

When you have a lot of data, the quality and relevance of the data is called into question.suitable research projectThe processes and methodology for managing, analyzing and visualizing big data are essential for a market research company.

"The objective is to transform data into information and information into knowledge." -Carly Fiorina

4. Access

Digital transformation has changed the level of interaction between a client company and its customers. Businesses interact with their customers on social media, apps,Customer supportand online communities. They have direct access to customers and their ongoing relationship builds trust. This is a personal relationship as opposed to a market researcher's impersonal approach to target audiences.

Market research requires the researcher to have access to the target group. It implies an impersonal relationship that maintains privacy. It is increasingly difficult for market research companies to have the same level of access and engagement with a company's customers or target customers.

Market researchers need to find a way to engage and stimulate their target audience so that they are relaxed and willing to share the necessary answers to the questions. They must build a pleasant rapport to have a willing and committed group of respondents.‍‍

Managing market research challenges

To increase participation levels in market research, market research companies have come up with new strategies to attract and retain an audience. This includes creative surveys, rewards and the use of technology to combat market research problems. An example of a market research problem might be figuring out what rewards the target group prefers.

1. When it comes to variety, more is better

The fact that people like variety applies as much to ice cream as it does to market research. When questions are similar and monotonous, it can cause disinterest. Making the question format varied is a simple but effective way to keep the respondent interested. You can also add some humor to the questions. Make them more informal and out of the way for maximum impact. The more creative and engaging the survey, the better your response will be.

When a survey is memorable and interesting, the respondent will be willing to take more surveys from the same market researcher in the future.

2. Think big with a short attention span

Attention spans are getting shorter. Search as short as possible. The fewer questions asked, the better the attention and connection with respondents. Market research must carefully weigh the need for each question that is asked.

Too many irrelevant questions stress respondents and do not add meaning or value to the marketing research problem. The less time it takes to answer the questions, the less respondent fatigue the survey will address.

3. Optimized search is awesome

Most of the surveys being carried out now are through the digital modality. People use smart devices more than ever before. Therefore, your survey must be equally attractive on your computer screen as well as on your phone or tablet screen.

Search optimization can also be visual to engage the people being asked. This includes colors, images, language and mood that are specific and relevant to the target group.

4. Rewards are the real game changer

Rewarding respondents for their time and effort is on the rise. This is to encourage people to be more willing to respond to a survey. The rewards that are given can be monetary or non-monetary. They are usually tailored to the target audience's preferences. It is vital that the offered reward is attractive and relevant to the target group.

For example, a music-related search might offer discounts on music or free products directly related to the type of music they prefer. While physical gifts and keepsakes may be given, they also include the cost and logistics of delivery. Coupons and vouchers are easier to hand out to respondents.

One of the easiest and most attractive incentives is to use a platform like Plum, which offers a range of options. You can offer a basket of different incentives that appeal to many different types of people. The type and size of incentive offered should be decided based on the difficulty of the questions and the time and effort required to answer them.

The incentive must be compelling and relevant to the search. Consistency in the reward pattern will ensure that respondents are confident in the benefit they will receive following the survey. Instant and easy to redeem rewards are the most memorable and preferred.

5. Stack the right technology

Many tools are available and many are being released. A market analysis company must be up to date on the latest advances in available technology. Not all technological tools fulfill their marketing.

A market research company must be able to select the right technology and tools for the right job. The right reward programs must also be chosen for best results. Market researchers can use technology to automate and customize their rewards and incentives programs.

6. State the problem and objectives of the investigation

The quality and usability of a market research report depends on the correct statement of the market research problem. The marketing research problem statement guides the research objectives as well as the direction and flow of the market analysis. It must be unambiguous.

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Market research problem statement

What is a market research problem?

The market research problem is the reason why the market research process is carried out. It defines the objectives of the research, how the study will be carried out and the conclusion that is expected as a result of the market research study. When the marketing research problem is vague or misunderstood, the entire study of marketing and its results will be an exercise in futility.

"Listening is listening to the customer's needs, understanding those needs, and ensuring the company recognizes the opportunity they present." -Frank Eliason

Definition of the market research problem

The first part of defining the marketing research problem is establishing the context or background of the problem. This helps to understand the need for the research and the questions that drive it. The next step is to clearly and unambiguously define the market research problem and justify the need for market research. The third component of a good marketing research problem suggests the methodology and types of data and sources that will be needed.

The scope of the market research problem predicts the desired outcome of the study and how the results can be actionable. Many problems in conducting market research will be avoided if we understand correctly what a market research problem is. Defining the problem statement and research questions is vital to the success of the research challenge and market research.

Example of a market research problem

Some sample questions for market research problems are:

  • What is the market size of a target market?
  • I am planning to open a store in XYZ location. How many other competitors are within walking distance of this area?
  • What are the most popular products or services in the XYZ category?
  • What should be the color of our company's website?
  • What is the most sought-after feature in my product or service category?
  • Would my best-selling product or service work well in a particular region or country?


Find out why our customers usePlum for marketing incentive programs


It's a big challenge to keep up with the latest trends and improvements in technology. However, this can be resolved by identifying accurate problem statements and choosing the right metrics for market analysis, ensuring that customer questions are answered accurately.

As for the problem of finding the right respondents and keeping them engaged, rewards and incentives are effective in getting quality results out of the activity. Incentives can be monetary or non-monetary and should be quick to redeem, flexible and attractive, leading to an engaged search base and high quality data for your next marketing campaign.


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