Magazine article Management Today

MT Masterclass: Market Research

Magazine article Management Today

MT Masterclass: Market Research

Article excerpt

- What is it?

Markets can be divided into different customer segments. Smart firms do not necessarily try to target every possible customer in every segment Instead, they get to know members of different segments as well as they can, a happy state of affairs known as 'customer intimacy'. This is what market research is for: finding out who the customers might be, what they want, and what they are prepared to pay. Hence the focus groups, the opinion polling, the hassled-looking people in the high street with clipboards, all looking for precious customer information.

- Where did it come from?

As business developed in the early 20th century, with a steadily larger and more varied customer base emerging, it became obvious that simply treating all customers the same no longer made sense. Henry Ford may have said that people could have any colour car they wanted, 'so long as it's black', but that view faded away. So market research was born - and with it too, arguably, the end of privacy. …

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