In my experience, trying and bringing your market research in-house is a mistake. Unless you have people in your company who are genuinely coached in the art of market research in the UK, you are taking a massive risk. And I do mean massive. Why? Because market research is more than just building a ‘client profile’ for who you will target.
There is far more to this process than you might first assume. If your business is going to try and be as successful as possible, your market research should always be outsourced to a market research firm. The simplest reason is that your market research determines everything you do. If I could get back the hours I lost targeting the wrong kind of people due to poor in-house research, it would still be 2012!
It will help if you start looking for a company you can trust to do the job. Someone with experience and with a genuine approach is very important. Many market research companies hide their inadequate output behind grandiose images and fancy terminology. Look for a company that is honest with you. Open communication is important because you trust these researchers to give you an honest appraisal of who you should target as a company.
The best bit of advice I can give you is to outsource everything that you do not have a specialist in-house for. If you are someone who feels like your company can do everything on its own, you are going to run into problems. If your market research is slightly wrong, you could waste valuable months – years, even – trying to chase the wrong kind of client. So, yes, outsource it!