Steve Jobs of Apple will tell you that market research is meaningless because people don’t know what they want until he shows them what’s possible. He’s usually right.
Gerber Baby foods didn’t figure they needed any market research when they opened Africa as a market. They were dead wrong. Turns out consumers there assumed that the picture on a jar of food represents what’s inside. Fresh baby anyone?
When we were trying to make the decision whether or not to introduce the PerfectWave DAC and transport series, market research showed us DACS and transports weren’t selling. We relied on our instincts and went forward because the market had not seen a network connected high-end DAC. Now it’s our biggest seller.
Market research and committee decisions for emerging technologies probably restricts brilliant products from emerging and should be avoided.
Commodities probably benefit from committees and research.
The high-end is not about building commodities.