By Stacy Zemon, Publisher & Chief Scribe
Marketing research can give your DJ business a picture of what kinds of new products and services potential clients want, and can bring in extra profit.
It can also tell you whether you are better off packaging your offerings versus upselling them independently.
By researching the answers to specific questions, you can learn whether or not you are meeting or exceeding your clients’ needs and expectations.
A good market research plan indicates where and who your prospects are, and when they are most likely and willing to book your DJ services.
When you conduct marketing research, you can use the results either to create a business and marketing plan or to measure the success of your current plan. That’s why it’s important to ask the right questions, in the right way, of the right people. Here are some market-research basics that can help get you started and some mistakes to avoid.
Types of Market Research
Primary Research: The goal of primary research is to gather data from analyzing current sales and the effectiveness of current practices. Primary research also takes competitors’ plans into account, giving you information about your competition.
Collecting primary research can include:
- Interviews (either by telephone or face-to-face)
- Surveys (online or by mail)
- Questionnaires (online or by mail)
- Focus groups gathering a sampling of potential clients or clients and getting their direct feedback
Some important questions might include:
- What factors would you consider when booking a DJ service?
- What do you like or dislike about most mobile DJs and DJ companies?
- What is the appropriate price for four-hour party and a four-hour wedding that includes (fill in the blank)?
Secondary Research: The goal of secondary research is to analyze data that has already been published. With secondary data, you can identify competitors, establish benchmarks and identify target segments. Your segments are the people who fall into your targeted demographic – people who live a certain lifestyle, exhibit particular behavioral patterns or fall into a predetermined age group (e.g., upper middle class brides in their late twenties).
No business can succeed without understanding its clients, its products and services, and the market in general. Competition in our industry is fierce, and operating without conducting research may give your competitors an advantage over you.
There are two categories of data collection: quantitative and qualitative.
Quantitative methods employ mathematical analysis and require a large sample size. The results of this data shed light on statistically significant differences. One place to find quantitative results is in the web analytics section of your website (available in Google’s suite of tools). This information can help you determine many things, such as where your leads are coming from, how long visitors are staying on your site, and from which page they are exiting.
Qualitative methods help you develop and fine-tune your quantitative research methods. They can help you define problems and often use interview methods to learn about clients’ opinions, values and beliefs. With qualitative research, the sample size is usually small.
Many mobile entertainers, often strapped for time and money, may take shortcuts that can later backfire. Here are three pitfalls to avoid.
Common Marketing Mistakes
- Using only secondary research. Relying on the published work of others doesn’t give you the full picture. It can be a great place to start, of course, but the information you get from secondary research can be outdated. You can miss out on other factors relevant to your business.
- Using only web resources. When you use common search engines to gather information, you get only data that are available to everyone and it may not be fully accurate. To perform deeper searches while staying within your budget, use the resources at your local library, college campus or small-business center.
- Surveying only the people you know. DJ business owners sometimes interview only family members and close colleagues when conducting research, but friends and family are often not the best survey subjects. To get the most useful and accurate information, you need to talk to real clients about their needs, wants and expectations.
Knowledge is power, my friends. That’s why you need to KNOW and not ASSUME the answers to vital questions that can help your business soar with the eagles or swim with the fishes.