Located nearby Washington, DC’s technology corridor, Shugoll Research has extensive experience working with a host of technology providers. We have a proven track record of conducting strategic research with both consumer and business-to-business markets in virtually every technology sector, including wireless communications, cellular products and services, long distance and local telephone service, online and Internet-based products and services, and computer software and hardware-related products.
A large part of our business is answering critical questions and providing actionable direction. Here are some of the questions Shugoll Research has helped Technology clients answer over the years:
In a rapidly growing industry where new providers are continually entering the market, it is increasingly important for companies to maintain their current customer base. To help technology clients retain their competitive edge, Shugoll Research conducts our “Customer Sat Tracker” to identify areas of strength in services delivered and areas of weakness that need to be improved before customers are lost. Using regression analysis or gap analysis we measure customer satisfaction in selected areas and the relative importance of each of those areas on customers’ overall satisfaction with the company.
When gap analysis is performed, importance/performance scores are developed and graphed on a quadrant. The location of each attribute/measure in the quadrant indicates the type of action that should be taken by the client such as areas for improvement, high leverage attributes, attributes on which no action is required and areas in which resources need to be repositioned or reallocated. Using these results, Shugoll Research has directed technology companies to a better understanding of their areas of opportunity for better service/product delivery and areas where changes are needed to improve customer service. Research results have also been used to assist clients in monitoring improvement of customer satisfaction over time and establishing performance measures for setting staff/service department goals and compensation.
Development and launch of cutting edge new products is a very expensive but necessary process for technology companies in an extremely competitive and fast-paced market place. Projecting the potential success of new products in the pipeline is a crucial element in product development activities. In order to assist technology clients make marketing and business-planning projections for new products, Shugoll Research uses our proprietary technique Product Opportunity Forecaster. Using this technique, we develop a model to project expected market share and revenue streams for new product options. A new product concept is evaluated first on its own and then relative to competitive offerings to identify attributes of the new product that are competitive or superior to other products in the market. The modeling program is then used to determine the impact of new product offerings on purchase behavior. Shugoll Research's Product Opportunity Forecaster develops demand estimates of clients’ product concepts under current and likely future competitive scenarios so clients can have a better idea of the potential success of their new products.
With the increasing use of integrated solutions in the technology industry, companies are facing the need to keep their sales forces motivated during the longer sales cycle associated with selling these products and services. This is especially important for sales professionals who are compensated on a heavily commission-based salary. Using our Decision Tree Insights proprietary product, Shugoll Research conducts in-depth interviews with current and prospective customers and sales professionals to better understand their purchase decision criteria and the obstacles for sales professionals selling in this environment. Qualitative research is followed up by survey research with client customers and sales professionals to develop measures of best practices that the sales force can use to more successfully sell integrated solutions. Shugoll Research also has used research results to help technology clients develop promotions to assist sales professionals in selling integrated solutions and developing a compensation structure more appropriate for the longer sales cycle needed for selling these products.
Given the highly competitive nature of the technology industry, companies are under increasing pressure to ensure that they are appropriately positioned and differentiated in their market, especially when competitors are more likely than not to be marketing commodity products. Shugoll Research uses several sophisticated research and analytical techniques to determine the image and reputation of client products among customers and prospects and identify major strengths and weaknesses vis-à-vis competitors through ratings of key image attributes. Our positioning analysis provides rich insights into how client products and competitive products (including commodities) are viewed relative to each other and in the market as a whole. One outcome of this analysis is to develop positioning maps that plot client products based on their ratings on each attribute relative to all other competitors. Shugoll Research has used the results of these positioning studies to help technology clients develop strategies to market and communicate their services effectively against competitors. Shugoll Research also conducts these studies over time for clients to determine the impact of marketing/communications activities on target market awareness of and attitudes toward the company and its products compared with the competition. Studies such as these assist technology companies in continually keeping abreast of how they stack up in a challenging and rapidly changing market.
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