Some useful tips for writing a research brief
If you haven’t written a market research brief before, don’t worry! We’ve outlined some ideas below which should help you prepare your thoughts. But if you prefer, just pick up the phone and we’ll be glad to help you and prepare a research proposal for you.
1. Background About your Company
It always helps to provide a brief introduction to your company which will help research agencies better understand your market and your customers. Rest assured that we treat everything you tell us in confidence. Your background section should include:
Include details such as:
- Company name and website
- Your industry sector and market trends/conditions
- Details about your products and services of interest
- Any other organisations involved in the project (e.g. advertising agency, branding, packaging company or consultant).
- Background information about your customer and target market
3. Target Customer
Your research objectives should also indicate who you feel the research should be involving.
Is it your current customers or broader target market, lapsed users or even non-users? You should try to describe your audience in as much detail as possible, such as; age, gender, income, occupation, location, company size, buyer behaviour, etc.
Other things to consider about your target audience are:
- Who you want to include within the research (and minimum sample size if known)
- Specify if you are able to provide contact details (or whether you need the research agency to provide these).
- Highlight if there are any specific segments or target groups you want to include or exclude
5. Timescales & Outputs
Research is often considered late in the business planning process – so we are used to turning around research projects very quickly.
But also consider internal milestones and deadlines that impact on the research process and decision-making deadlines. Also give some thought to what outputs and deliverables you need such as a presentation/workshop etc.
Include the following:
- Timescale for the procurement process and when you will make a decision to commence the research.
- Deadlines such as when you want the findings and when business decisions are being made
- Whether you want to receive top-line findings in advance of the main findings or any other updates during the course of the research
- How you would like the findings in a written report format or as a presentation (face to face or online).
Ideally both you and the research agency should be as transparent as possible and that openness & honesty is the best policy. With an understanding of your budget, it is a lot easier to find the right solution that works for you. We often offer a few cost options so that the decision is always yours!
7. Other Information
Please provide any other details you feel is relevant – at the end of the day we are here to help! If it is a formal tender process and there are certain requirements to be met then please specify these in your brief.
- Provide names and contacts of key contacts on the project team.
- Who should we contact if we have any queries regarding the brief if not yourself?
- Do you have any payment terms we need to be aware of?
Thank you for taking the time to read this guide to writing a market research brief. We hope you have found it useful and look forward to hearing from you at some point. If you would like any more information about your research needs, please call us on 0151 945 0150