In today’s continually evolving business world, no successful business can afford to stand still. With industry trends and practices ever-changing, market research companies can be invaluable partners to brands looking to cement their proposition and grow their reach. Let’s look at how to set up your own market research company and the tools you’ll need to succeed.

Businesses need to obtain specific industry data before releasing a new service or product into their marketplace; that’s where innovative market research companies come in. Innovation is key for any new market research business. With a huge industry brimming with agencies of all shapes and sizes, it’s vital that new brands have strong USPs to make their mark.

Although the market research industry is not as dependent on the success of the wider economy – due to the fact that businesses will always need to collect relevant market data to operate efficiently even in a recession – make sure you read our top tips for consideration to help your start-up market research agency flourish.

Offer something hugely different

It’s much harder to succeed in business by blending into the background. If you really want your market research start-up to make an impression, consider offering something drastically different to your competitors and work to specialise in that niche. For example, you might choose to specialise in mobile-based market research and become the go-to agency that helps businesses better understand the success of new product launches by interacting with customers via smartphone devices.

Never assume you know it all!

Even if you’d worked in market research for many years before setting up your own agency, it’s important to acknowledge that there’s always more to learn. Market research as an industry is evolving all the time thanks to technological advancements and you need to keep pace with it. That doesn’t necessarily mean you have to head to the library and read for hours on end, it simply means you should always keep your eyes and ears peeled for developments and observe the news around you.

Build your industry authority

Another hugely effective way of improving your agency’s standing and reputation is to put pen to paper and start online conversations with your peers. Whether it’s a branded blog, a downloadable whitepaper or a thought-leadership talk at an industry conference, any air time is good air time. It enables you to position your agency as an authority and one which is at the cutting-edge of market trends that may just win you some new clients.

Develop a network of professionals you can trust

When you start up your agency it can seem like a lonely place. There’ll be countless times when you could do with someone to use as a soundboard for your issues. It’s therefore important that you surround yourself with a select group of people you can trust with the experience and know-how that you lack. They don’t necessarily need to have a controlling interest in your business; if they are friends or colleagues they may simply offer you professional advice and guidance for free.

Alternatively, when you’re at the concept stage of setting up your own market research agency you may explore the possibility of finding a business partner to come on board with you. If it’s someone with existing market research experience they may be able to bring their own clients, contacts or funding with them!


If you need business funding to give your market research start-up a helping hand, Workspace partner, Informed Funding can offer a wealth of alternative finance solutions that can grow your business without needing to go via the high street, as well as free one-to-one consultations from an independent financial expert.

Consider your business location

If you’re planning on hiring staff from the word go and meeting with clients and consumers, you’ll need to think carefully about the best location for your market research business. In an ideal world, you’ll require a business centre that’s centrally located, feature-laden and easily accessible for clients and consumers to reach you.

At Workspace, our diverse portfolio of office and studio space gives ambitious start-ups the chance to really make their mark in the capital. If your market research business demands exposure and the ability to network with a raft of potential clients, Workspace’s network of 4,000-plus New and Growing Companies is on-hand to tap into, with ample networking opportunities throughout the year’s free workshops and seminars on offer.

By selecting a Workspace office, your market research business can be equipped immediately with high-speed telecommunications that’s essential to liaise with clients and conduct market research by phone, online and video conferencing.

With Workspace, there is another way your market research agency can benefit. Our One Sixty Fleet Street business centre features a purpose-built Observation Room that’s tailor-made for market researchers to conduct focus groups and one-to-one sessions. The room is capable of hosting up to 16 people and features seamless communications technology to record group audio and present to people via the 80” LED screen.

Observation RoomFeature-laden market research space at One Sixty Fleet Street


While the above tips are by no means an exhaustive list, they hopefully add some colour to your start-up plans and give you some reassurance that it’s possible to establish a new market research agency with the assistance of a network of people you can trust and professional research facilities such as our Observation Room.