The Importance of Market Research for the Valley Yellow Pages
Whenever a company has a new product or service it would like to offer to the public there are always questions it needs to answer and analyze first. For instance, who is the target market or markets we want to appeal to? Is the market receptive to a new entry or are the products or services already there sufficiently entrenched barring any successful new release into the market? How well will our product or service address the wants and needs of our customers? The answer to each of these questions requires this firm to conduct research, specifically market research, to gain the knowledge they seek. Using the Valley Yellow Pages Company as an example, this paper will define market research, identify the different types of marketing research used, and describe the importance of this research to the organization.
Marketing has been defined as “the process of planning and executing the conception, pricing, promotion and distribution of ideas, goods and services to create exchanges that satisfy individual (customer) and organizational objectives." One of the key aspects of any marketing strategy is research. Research is the way in which a firm gathers information so they can make intelligent business decisions. One company that utilizes market research is the publisher of the local print telephone directory, the Valley Yellow Pages. For a business like Valley to succeed with its marketing plan, they must be able to locate, satisfy, and retain customers while making a profit. In addition, they need to know who their key demographics are and what the public’s perception is of the print yellow pages ("Morebusiness.com", 1998-2011).
What is Market Research?
This is where market research comes into play. It begins with a plan that charts how relevant data is to be collected and analyzed so that the results are useful and relevant for making marketing decisions. Then it collects this relevant data for the company using various research methods, such as survey questionnaires, in-person and telephone interviews, observations, focus groups, and case studies. An analysis of this data can reveal a tremendous amount of information that they may not have known. For example, responses to their surveys may indicate that their customers have a poor initial perception of the company’s products or services, a lower-than expected opinion of the company itself, or a belief that the product or service is overpriced. This data provides a solid foundation for a company’s marketing strategy by reducing uncertainty, facilitating decision-making and highlighting any consumer problems that may exist. This is what is at the core of what market research is all about ("Morebusiness.com", 1998-2011).
The Valley Yellow Pages has been an independent publisher of print telephone directories in Northern California since 1987 when three executives from Pacific Bell, the utility company that...