According to industry leaders MRS, market research is the ‘collection and analysis of information about markets’. Put simply, it means gathering information from prospective customers and working out what that all means for your business.
Perhaps you have a choice of two venues: a large city centre based gym, well positioned but with a lot of competition from other fitness centres, and a smaller, less central community centre with no other health facilities for miles. Which should you choose?
There is a myth that an entrepreneur would just go with their intuition and risk making the wrong choice, but most successful business owners believe in calculated risks, not recklessness.
Market research is the only way to test your ideas for viability and is an important tool in a Street Fit® Instructor’s kit.
Isn’t Market Research Expensive?
Professional market research is pretty costly, usually reaching into four figures. That’s testimony to how important it is to know exactly what your customers want. However, for all but the most serious, established Instructors, the cost is simply too great. Professional market research is really for those with huge budgets at stake, where a 1-2% variation in the market demand can make or break a product.
The simple alternative, suitable for the new business owner, is to do it yourself. With a bit of basic grounding, there is no reason why you can’t get all the information you need to set up a profitable operation.
Two Types of Research
The first distinction to be aware of is that between primary and secondary research.
Primary research is conducted directly with the market. It comes from tools such as face-to-face interviews; telephone or internet surveys and focus groups (small structured groups focused on one issue/topic).
Secondary research comes from reading the results of previous market research studies, including those compiled by government agencies and interest groups.
While secondary research is easy to come across, and is usually nicely summarised, it is wise to remember that the goals of pre-existing studies would probably have been different to yours, and that the information is likely to be dated. Secondary research can also be misleading if it has been conducted on a different demographic group from your local one.
Primary research is often more time-consuming and requires more effort but, as with most things, the results are worth the extra work as you will be collecting data that is fresh and relevant.
How to conduct market research
A great way to carry out effective market research is to get out and among your potential members. Not only will you be able to gauge interest on the street, you can also combine it with PR, generating a buzz in your local community.
Creating your own focus group is easy too. All you need is a free or reasonably priced venue to host it, some refreshments and a list of discussion points.
The advent of social media has made peer surveys a lot easier to conduct. Simply spread the word via your favourite social network and ask for feedback. Some networks even enable you to host free polls which are ideal for simple either/or decisions (e.g. would you prefer a morning or evening class?)
Whatever method, or combination of methods, you choose, ensure you include as many people as possible (maximise your sample size), and try to contact a variety of different people within your target market.
Be Creative With the Results
Market research should rarely be used as an excuse to give up on a cherished idea. Instead, try to use the results to fine-tune your plans.
For example, if hardly anyone is interested in your evening class, because they’ve got children, consider providing a crèche facility.
Finally – Don’t Ask the Family
While it is fine to ask family members for their opinion and support, it is unwise to base your business decisions on their advice (unless one of your parents happens to be a successful entrepreneur).
Most parents fall into one of two categories: those who will say anything to please you, and those that will be overly sceptical because they don’t want you to be hurt by failure.
By carrying out your own market research, you will have given yourself the best insurance against that risk, and started building the foundations of a successful street dance fitness business.
Street Fit Online Members
Becoming a Street Fit Online member will give you the confidence and backing of Street Fits Marketing might! If you are looking to have a helping hand or get ahead of competition becoming an online member will really give you the boost you need!
Street Fit online members are the most dedicated and prepared of all Street Fit® Instructors. Some of the benefits include the following:
- Latest Street Fit music
- New choreography received every quarter
- Training via the online members’ area of SFTV, the member-exclusive online video platform that
provides an array of choreography, music and marketing tips to support and enhance
instructors’ skill sets.
- Marketing and class templates – letters to clubs and clients, waivers, health & safety forms, letterhead/business card templates, speciality logos and more.
- Strategic marketing support from one of the largest fitness companies in the world.
- An online community-oriented forum featuring round-the-clock support, feedback, tips and
leads from fellow Street Fit members around the world
- The ability to have your own ‘Street Fit’ web address
- Discounts on attending Street Fit Events
- Discount on future training and products
In addition to the existing course materials we will now pass on what we have learned from taking extensive courses on SEO and Online Marketing:
- How to grab an extra income every week
- How to make sure you get paid whether your clients turn up or not
- How to attract new members that you have never met or talked to
- How to give your clients fast results they need quickly and easily
- Learn to make money while you sleep
- Priceless shortcuts and online information that would take you YEARS to figure out by trial and error
Just as importantly, the monthly online membership keeps you in touch with other Instructors and the Street Fit team, expanding your network and helping you feel supported and well-connected.
All this additional support is provided for one reason: to make it easier for you to promote yourself and earn more money.
If you have yet to attend one of our compulsory Street Fit Instructor Training Courses, you will have the opportunity to sign up for club membership on the day. If you are already a certified Street Fit Instructor, just give us a call and we will be happy to upgrade you.