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Approaching Market Researchers
2005-4-1 0:14:38
Being asked to do a survey on the street happens every day in our life. But trying to make money out of the ¡°survey¡± business, is not immediately accessible for ordinary people.

It is a career that you will always act as a professional data collector and analyst. The industry is increditably young, simply because it entirely relies on the existence of ¡°market¡±, a concept and reality that was unavailable until mid-80s last century in China. Like other ¡°new industries and services¡±, market research is transplanted from the western society. When the foreign companies knocked on the door of the Chinese market, they first looked through a list of market report and analysis. Such business model was soon adopted by other Chinese businesses. They gradually realized that market research is a must to rationalize their cost-effect control. Without the information of market research, there would be great risk ahead.


Currently, there are about 3,000 big and small market research companies in China. It is regarded as one of the fastest growing industries and the its annual growth rate could reach 100%. But the main players are still those big international brands like AC Nielson and Gallup. Domestic market research agencies are still weak in terms of human resource, capital and professional techniques.


It is not hard to imagine that if you learn the model from the western market research companies, and employ several personnel to actually conduct the survey and put the data in to the computer software, you can see the result. However, what clients demand is always the reliability of the results. Without reputation in certain area of market research, chances are less for the companies to survive.


The influence of reputation can be reflected through a research project produced by a company. Just take AC Nielson for example. Its survey on global sleeping habit shows that one fourth of the Chinese fall into sleep after midnight, while two third of the Chinese surveyed get up before 7 in the morning. Such statistics maybe a bit silly, but it has demonstrated the strength of the company. Nielson¡¯s survey covers 28 markets in Asian, European and American countries and 14,000 respondents. Domestic companies, even the top one, can¡¯t have the global resource as many as that of AC Nielson¡¯s.


But the Chinese companies don¡¯t need to be global to compete with these international giants. The domestic market has an increasing demand for the service as China is fulfilling its WTO commitment. Localized and lower cost of market research service will benefit lots of domestic small- and mid-sized enterprises. All the domestic players should do is to be more self-regulated and more professional in a particular field.


(By Biz Channel Editor Dandan Chen)

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