Secondary research is knowledge obtained about your subject of interest by other individuals. A significant start to collecting marketing research is the conduct of secondary research. The trick is that with your own primary research, you need to find credible sources for the data, understand whether or not they have an agenda outside of spreading the facts, and then validate the information.
You need to know where to get the details from before you even get started. You want to find reliable information sources that are going to work with your needs. Places that are divisions of government, education, and business work well.
Be careful about sources with a particular agenda because they may twist the information to match their own needs.
To build a start for the secondary research you are doing, you will collect public data and other information from organizations and industry. It’ll be easier to decide what to hold if you ask yourself what you want to find out and then gather data that addresses that question.
Often, from various sources, you can find contradictory facts. Take a careful look at the information to make sure that in terms of what was actually gathered, the interpretation you find is correct. You may need to throw out certain sources that you find more credible in favor of others.
You should bring it together in a way that is easy to understand once you have decided that the data you have obtained is reliable, fair and representative of your sector. The best way to make the data clear is always to use words, plus graphics and images. What’s more, you’ll want to determine whether you’re putting the data together for yourself or for your audience to use internally.
Understand the benefits and disadvantages of secondary research
Secondary research has the benefit of being a fast, cost-effective way to quickly collect information, and it has a high level of value.
But often it’s very general, and not really indicative of your targeted audience’s wants and needs. You’ll have to do primary research to make sure it’s accurate.
Using Technology to Assist
You can use technology to support you today, such as accessing different online sources such as the US Census over the net, so that you can only download the data. Now that you can do it online, it’s incredible what’s out there if you know where to look.
Sources and Tactics
If you’re not sure where to start, a government agency that gathers and publishes data about different audiences is the best location. Next, look for trade papers, academic studies, and experts from the industry. Before you get started, you can also ask your colleagues and partners for help with brainstorming.
They say that it doesn’t exist if you spend more than 10 to 15 minutes trying to find something online. But, you may not be using the correct words for the quest. Prior to beginning your search, brainstorm at least ten to twenty search words for your subject matter. Do not waste too much time looking, however, because you have to spend more time analyzing.
Before you get hung up on any sort of data you collect, follow leads and check for information in public areas such as libraries, government departments, trade journals, and other reliable places when you do secondary research.
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