Market Research & Polling Services
Companies in this industry gather, record, tabulate, and present marketing and public opinion data. Major companies include Gallup, Gartner, Forrester Research, and Westat (all based in the US); Nielsen and Kantar (both in the UK); as well as Gfk (Germany), Ipsos (France), and INTAGE (Japan).
Worldwide, the market research industry generates about $49 billion in annual revenue, according to ESOMAR and BDO. The US and Europe dominate the industry. Countries with growing middle classes are seeing rising demand for market research services.
The US market research services industry includes about 5,000 establishments (single-location companies and units of multi-location companies) with combined annual revenue of about $18 billion.
Demand is driven primarily by the health of the economy and corporate profits. The profitability of individual companies depends on managing costs and maintaining a steady flow of work. Large companies have advantages in providing a variety of research and ancillary services to large customers, and in achieving economies of scale in marketing and computerized operations. Small companies can compete successfully by specializing in a research methodology or in emerging niche knowledge areas. The US industry is concentrated: the top 50 companies generate about 55% of industry revenue.
Competitor industries may include online or print publishers of business information, as well as marketing firms and business consulting firms. Market research companies may also face competition from the internal marketing staffs of current or prospective clients that choose to conduct research in-house.
Products, Operations & Technology
Major services are marketing research, which accounts for about 90% of industry revenue, and public opinion polling. Other services include media monitoring
Sales & Marketing
Finance & Regulation
Regional & International Issues
Also includes the following chapters:
Quarterly Industry Update
Trends and Opportunities
Call Preparation Questions
Glossary of Acronyms