Template for briefing market research

This is a useful guide for thinking through information needs and briefing suppliers (or internally). It's a good discipline to follow and focuses the research process.

1. Background

  • Outline of the market, business and competitors
  • Marketing landscape, context for this business/product
  • General challenges in the market, and specific issues for the business
  • Relevant research previously undertaken
  • Why this research has become important at this point in time

2. Business reason for research

  • What are the business goals, and how will research information help to achieve these goals

3. Marketing Objectives

  • What the marketing function needs to know to achieve the business goals
  • Hypotheses about ‘what’s going on’

4. Research Objectives

  • What should the research specifically investigate to assist/inform marketing objectives
  • May include objectives about (among others):
    • Consumer characteristics
    • Current and past behaviour
    • Attitudes to product/category
    • Competitors
    • Brand perceptions
    • Customer experience/interactions
    • Needs/desires
    • Products and services
    • Communication/information
    • Brand a n d product usage

5. Action standards (if applicable)

  • What standards need to be achieved to make the decision (eg. 50%+ must strongly like the idea). What might be considered a good, surprising, high, or low result?
  • Action standards do not apply in all research projects.

6. Target group

  • Is a particular consumer or customer to be the subject of the research, or the general population?
  • Different stakeholder groups; internal, government, residents, community organisations, funding stakeholders

7. Methodology

  • Are there any thoughts about the methodological approach – did you have a fixed view, or are you open to suggestions?
  • Who is the end audience (internally), what sort of information will they require to be confident in the information (eg. quantitative or qualitative).

8. Materials

  • What, if any materials will be included in the research, and what form are they in (eg. Digital, storyboard, product/pack mock ups)

9. Budget

  • If a budget has been allocated it is best to advise so the project can be maximised to budget.  If the budget is flexible or you are unsure how much it will cost, provide a range or indication of budget.

10. Contact

  • Your contact details. Allow the research agency to contact you to discuss the research as they are preparing the proposal.  These discussions will help to clarify the project for ahead of it commencing, and ensure a more relevant proposal is provided.