Do you know the type of wine club your customers prefer? The social media channels they visit daily? Do you know what radio stations your customers listen to? Read the top 4 reasons why your brand should use market research.

This past year we have worked with several wine, spirit and food brands on gathering market research through online surveys.

We also worked with Knowledge Corporation Index, a marketing company who assists Japanese clients in entering the U.S. market, and their clients – both Shirataki Sake and Maruhon Sesame Oil. Their goals? To find out how how Americans perceive sake. For Maruhon Sesame Oil, we created surveys and used the results to determine final packaging design, bottle closures, flavor preference (dark, medium brown or clear) and pricing.

What is Market research?


“The process of gathering, analyzing and interpreting information about a market, product or service to be offered for sale in that market, and about the past, present and potential customers for the product or service; research into the characteristics, spending habits, location and needs of your business’s target market, the industry as a whole, and the particular competitors you face .” – Entrepreneur.com


In a nutshell, we love market research because it helps focus the design and marketing recommendations we make.

Top 4 reasons to do Market Research:

Identify your demographics

  • If you know your target demographic for your wine, spirit or food brand, it will help you know where to advertise and what social media channels your brand should be on. Are most of your consumers Millennials? Then being on Instagram is a must, as well as having innovative events.
  • Knowing your demographics can also help you know which radio station to advertise on and which magazine to appear in. All media rep’s will be able to tell you exactly which demographics (age, male/female, zip codes, etc) listen to their radio station or read their magazine.

Guide your communication with current and future customers

  • Through Market research you can determine how your customers prefer to be communicated with. Weekly or monthly email? Social Media? Snail Mail? More information on your website? All of these things can easily be determined with market research.
  • Knowing who your customer is, helps you write in the correct tone of voice.
  • Market Research is particularly important in crafting your yearly marketing plan.

Identify opportunities

  • One wine brand we worked with found out that their most loyal customers had wine club memberships elsewhere, which lead them to start their own wine club.
  • Our client, Shirataki Sake, found out that many Americans don’t realize that sake can be paired like wine, which lead to more educational posts on social media and in their email newsletter.

Helps you minimize risk

  • Are you planning on importing your product into the US? Market Research is a great tool to find out the preferences of the people in the cities you plan to launch in.
  • For both Japanese companies, Maruhon Sesame Oil and Shirataki Sake, we developed questions to determine which flavors, bottle closures, buying behavior trends, plus key selling words like “100% pure” and bottle styles that consumers preferred.
  • Want to find out if your customers are interested in trendy wines, like rosé, or a new wine varietal? Surveys are a great way to find out this information. Plus, since online surveys can be filled out anonymously, your customers are more likely to be honest.
  • Which is easier – paying money up front to figure out preferences or launching a product that doesn’t sell?

How can you do market research?

Surveymonkey.com is a great free online resource to build your survey. Not sure what types of questions to ask? Schedule a free 30 minute chat with owner, Rebecca Ritz.