10 Best Market Research Agencies in Charlotte

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Market research has grown rapidly in recent years as online businesses require valuable data about their target audience behavior, interest, age, gender, locality, and demographics to create products and services that resonate with their customers.

There are plenty of market research agencies that help businesses collect information about their target audience by conducting workshops, surveys, questionnaires, polls, interviews, feedback, and focus groups.

Charlotte has a handful of market research agencies with great experience and reputation in providing market research services for businesses in various industries. These agencies specialize in carrying out market research campaigns to boost brand visibility, sales, and revenue.

If you’re looking to work with a market research agency, check out our list of reputed market research agencies in Charlotte. They can help in gathering and analyzing information about your customers, competitors, vendors, and distributors.

A market research agency is a specialized firm that helps businesses gather, analyze, and interpret data about their market, customers, competitors, and overall industry. These agencies use various methodologies to provide insights that guide strategic decisions, marketing efforts, product development, and more. By understanding market trends, consumer behavior, and competitive dynamics, businesses can make informed decisions to drive growth and profitability. Market research agencies offer services such as surveys, focus groups, data analysis, and competitive analysis to deliver actionable insights.

A market research agency provides comprehensive services to help businesses understand their market, customers, and competition. Here are the primary functions:

  1. Market Analysis: Agencies conduct in-depth analysis of the market landscape, identifying trends, opportunities, and threats.
  2. Consumer Research: They gather data on consumer preferences, behaviors, and attitudes through surveys, interviews, and focus groups.
  3. Competitive Analysis: Agencies analyze competitors to understand their strategies, strengths, and weaknesses.
  4. Data Collection: They use various methods such as online surveys, phone interviews, and face-to-face interactions to collect relevant data.
  5. Data Analysis: Agencies analyze the collected data using statistical tools to extract meaningful insights.
  6. Reporting and Insights: They provide detailed reports and actionable insights to guide business strategies and decision-making.
  7. Product Testing: Agencies conduct tests to gauge consumer reaction to new products or services.
  8. Brand Research: They assess brand perception and awareness among target audiences.
  9. Market Segmentation: Agencies identify distinct market segments to tailor marketing efforts effectively.
  10. Customer Satisfaction Studies: They measure customer satisfaction and loyalty to help improve products and services.

Understanding the cost of hiring a market research agency can be crucial for budgeting and making informed decisions. Here’s a breakdown of what you can expect when it comes to the costs associated with market research services:

Common Pricing Models

  1. Hourly Rate: Ideal for smaller projects or businesses with limited budgets, hourly rates can vary widely based on the agency’s location and expertise. Expect rates to range from $100 to $300 per hour.
  2. Project-Based Pricing: This model provides a fixed price for specific research projects. It’s suitable for well-defined tasks and offers clarity on costs upfront. Typical project-based fees can range from $5,000 to $50,000, depending on the complexity and scope.
  3. Retainer: For ongoing research needs, agencies may offer a retainer model where clients pay a monthly fee for a set number of hours or services. Retainers can range from $2,000 to $10,000 per month, depending on the services included.
  4. Performance-Based Pricing: Some agencies may offer performance-based pricing, where fees are tied to specific outcomes or metrics. This model can be beneficial for clients as it aligns the agency’s incentives with the success of the campaign, but it is less common and can be more complex to manage.

Factors Influencing Costs

  1. Project Scope and Complexity: Larger and more complex projects require more resources, expertise, and time, leading to higher costs. A simple survey might cost a few thousand dollars, while an in-depth multi-phase research project could reach up to $50,000 or more.
  2. Research Methods: Different methods come with different price tags. Online surveys are generally less expensive than in-depth interviews or focus groups. Adding AI-driven insights or advanced analytics can also increase costs.
  3. Sample Size: The number of participants or respondents needed for your research impacts the overall cost. Larger sample sizes typically require more resources and can significantly raise the price.
  4. Geographic Location: The location of the market research agency can affect pricing. Agencies in major cities or high-cost regions may charge more to cover their expenses. Offshore or nearshore agencies might offer more competitive rates.
  5. Agency Reputation and Experience: Established agencies with a strong track record and specialized expertise often charge higher fees. While smaller or newer agencies might offer lower rates, they may not have the same level of experience or resources.

Average Costs

  • Simple Online Surveys: $5,000 – $15,000
  • Focus Groups: $10,000 – $30,000
  • In-Depth Interviews: $15,000 – $40,000
  • Comprehensive Market Research Studies: $20,000 – $50,000+

Additional Considerations

  • Ongoing Maintenance and Support: Some agencies offer ongoing support and updates, which can add to the overall cost. This might be part of a retainer or an additional service.
  • Custom Reporting: Tailored reports and presentations that provide detailed insights and recommendations can also increase the cost.

Understanding these cost structures and factors can help you budget effectively for your market research needs. By choosing the right pricing model and clearly defining your project scope, you can find a market research agency that fits your budget and delivers valuable insights for your business.

Hiring a market research agency can be a game-changer for your business. Here’s why:

  1. Expertise and Experience: Market research agencies have specialized skills and extensive experience in gathering and analyzing data. They know the best methodologies to use for different types of research, ensuring you get accurate and actionable insights.
  2. Objective Perspective: An external agency can provide an unbiased viewpoint, which is crucial for obtaining reliable data. They are not influenced by internal company politics or preconceived notions.
  3. Time and Resource Efficiency: Conducting market research in-house can be time-consuming and resource-intensive. Agencies have the tools and manpower to handle large-scale research efficiently, allowing your team to focus on other critical business activities.
  4. Access to Advanced Tools and Techniques: Market research agencies have access to the latest technologies and methodologies for data collection and analysis. This means you benefit from cutting-edge insights without having to invest in expensive tools yourself.
  5. In-Depth Analysis: Agencies provide comprehensive analysis and detailed reports, helping you understand complex data and make informed decisions. Their expertise in interpreting data ensures you get the most value out of the research.
  6. Competitive Advantage: Understanding market trends, customer preferences, and competitor strategies gives you a significant edge. An agency can help you identify opportunities and threats, enabling you to stay ahead in your industry.
  7. Customized Research Solutions: Market research agencies can tailor their services to meet your specific needs, whether you need a detailed competitor analysis, customer satisfaction survey, or product feasibility study.
  8. Cost-Effective: While there is an upfront cost, the insights gained can lead to better decision-making, which can save money and increase revenue in the long run. Avoiding costly mistakes and capitalizing on market opportunities can more than justify the investment.
  9. Global Reach: If your business operates internationally, agencies have the capabilities to conduct research across different markets and geographies, providing you with a global perspective.
  10. Focus on Core Business: By outsourcing your market research, you can concentrate on your core business activities, improving overall productivity and efficiency.

In essence, a market research agency can provide you with the insights, expertise, and strategic direction needed to make informed decisions and drive your business forward.

Choosing the best market research agency for your needs can significantly impact the quality and relevance of the insights you receive. Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you make the right choice:

Define Your Objectives:

  • Clearly outline what you want to achieve with the market research. Are you looking to understand customer preferences, explore new markets, or evaluate a product’s feasibility? Knowing your goals will help you find an agency with the right expertise.

Identify Your Budget:

  • Determine how much you’re willing to spend on the research. Having a clear budget in mind will help you narrow down your options and ensure you get the best value for your money.

Evaluate Expertise and Experience:

  • Look for agencies with a proven track record in your industry. Check their portfolio, case studies, and client testimonials to gauge their experience and success in handling similar projects.

Check Methodologies:

  • Understand the research methodologies the agency uses. Ensure they employ both qualitative and quantitative methods suitable for your research objectives. The right mix of methodologies can provide comprehensive insights.

Assess Communication and Reporting:

  • Effective communication is crucial. Ensure the agency provides regular updates and detailed reports. Ask for sample reports to see if their presentation style matches your preferences.

Consider Technological Capabilities:

  • Ensure the agency uses advanced tools and technologies for data collection and analysis. This can significantly enhance the accuracy and depth of the insights.

Verify Credentials:

  • Check if the agency has any certifications or affiliations with professional organizations. This can be an indicator of their commitment to high standards and continuous improvement.

Request Proposals:

  • Ask for detailed proposals from shortlisted agencies. Compare their approaches, timelines, and costs. A well-detailed proposal can give you a good sense of how they plan to tackle your research needs.

Evaluate Flexibility and Customization:

  • Ensure the agency is willing to customize their approach to meet your specific needs. They should be flexible and open to adjusting their methodologies and processes based on your requirements.

Review Client References:

  • Speak to past clients to get firsthand feedback on the agency’s performance, reliability, and quality of insights. This can provide valuable insights into what it’s like to work with them.

Check for Cultural Fit:

  • Ensure the agency understands your company’s culture and values. A good cultural fit can lead to better collaboration and more meaningful insights.

Consider Location:

  • Depending on your needs, you might prefer an agency that is local or has a strong understanding of your target market’s geographical nuances. However, many agencies can work effectively remotely, so weigh the pros and cons.

Understand Their Analytical Approach:

  • Inquire about how the agency interprets data and derives insights. Their analytical approach should align with your expectations for depth and relevance.

Evaluate Their Problem-Solving Skills:

  • Discuss potential challenges and how the agency plans to address them. Their problem-solving abilities can be a good indicator of their expertise and reliability.

Consider Long-Term Partnership Potential:

  • If you foresee ongoing research needs, evaluate the agency’s potential as a long-term partner. Consistency and understanding of your business can lead to more valuable insights over time.

By following these steps, you can choose a market research agency that not only meets your immediate needs but also provides strategic insights to help you make informed business decisions.

When hiring a market research agency, asking the right questions can help you assess their capabilities, methodologies, and fit for your project. Here are key questions to consider:

Relevant Background

  1. Experience in Your Industry:
    • Have you conducted research in our industry before?
    • Can you provide case studies or examples of similar projects?
  2. Client References:
    • Can you provide references from previous clients?
    • What kind of feedback do you typically receive from clients?

Company Services and Processes

  1. Research Methodologies:
    • What research methodologies do you specialize in?
    • How do you decide which methodologies to use for a project?
  2. Technology and Tools:
    • What tools and technologies do you use for data collection and analysis?
    • Do you have access to any proprietary tools or databases?
  3. Customization and Flexibility:
    • How do you customize your research approach to meet specific client needs?
    • Can your methodologies be adjusted based on our evolving needs?
  4. Reporting and Insights:
    • How do you report your findings? Can we see a sample report?
    • Do you provide actionable insights and recommendations based on the data?

The Project

  1. Project Timeline:
    • What is the typical timeline for a project like ours?
    • How do you manage deadlines and ensure timely delivery?
  2. Team Expertise:
    • Who will be working on our project, and what are their qualifications?
    • Can we meet the team members who will be involved in our research?
  3. Communication and Updates:
    • How frequently will we receive updates on the progress of the research?
    • What communication channels will you use to keep us informed?
  4. Data Privacy and Security:
    • How do you ensure the privacy and security of the data collected?
    • Are there any certifications or protocols you follow for data protection?

Costs and Contract Terms

  1. Pricing Structure:
    • What is your pricing model (hourly, project-based, retainer, performance-based)?
    • Can you provide a detailed breakdown of the costs?
  2. Budget Flexibility:
    • How flexible are you with adjusting the scope of work to fit our budget?
    • Are there any additional costs we should be aware of?
  3. Contract Terms:
    • What are your standard contract terms and conditions?
    • How do you handle potential changes or extensions to the project scope?

Performance and Results

  1. Success Metrics:
    • How do you measure the success of a research project?
    • What key performance indicators (KPIs) do you use?
  2. Post-Project Support:
    • Do you offer any post-project support or follow-up services?
    • How do you handle requests for additional analysis or insights after the project is completed?

By asking these questions, you can better evaluate the market research agency’s ability to deliver high-quality, actionable insights tailored to your specific needs.

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Our Rating Guidelines

AAA Rated Agencies only get this rank if we have sent a client previously and the client has given us positive feedback.

An AAA-rated digital marketing agency demonstrates exceptional expertise, innovation, and results in the field of digital marketing. The agency consistently goes above and beyond to exceed client expectations and industry standards. To achieve this top rating, an agency must exhibit:

  1. Strategic Excellence: The agency devises comprehensive and customized digital marketing strategies that align with clients’ business goals. Strategies show deep understanding of the target audience, market trends, and competition.
  2. Innovative Approach: The agency consistently adopts and implements cutting-edge digital marketing techniques, leveraging emerging technologies and platforms to stay ahead of the curve.
  3. Proven Results: Demonstrates a track record of delivering tangible and measurable results, such as increased website traffic, engagement, conversions, and ROI for clients.
  4. Clear Communication: Maintains transparent and open communication with clients, providing regular updates, performance reports, and insights into ongoing campaigns.
  5. Multi-Channel Mastery: Exhibits proficiency across various digital marketing channels, including but not limited to SEO, SEM, content marketing, social media, email marketing, and influencer collaborations.
  6. Adaptability: Has the ability to adapt strategies quickly in response to changing market conditions, algorithm updates, and client needs.

An AA-rated digital marketing agency demonstrates excellent capabilities and consistently delivers strong results for clients. The agency excels in multiple areas of digital marketing and exhibits qualities such as:

  1. Strategic Proficiency: The agency develops effective digital marketing strategies that align with clients’ objectives and show a good understanding of target audiences.
  2. Effective Implementation: Successfully executes campaigns across various digital channels, showing proficiency in both paid and organic techniques.
  3. Measurable Outcomes: Provides clear evidence of positive outcomes, with data-backed improvements in key performance metrics.
  4. Communication: Maintains proactive communication, sharing progress reports, results, and recommendations on a regular basis.
  5. Diverse Skill Set: Demonstrates expertise in several digital marketing disciplines, adapting to new trends and platforms adequately.

An A-rated digital marketing agency performs well and delivers consistent results for clients. The agency meets the industry standards in various aspects, including:

  1. Strategic Planning: Develops solid digital marketing strategies that address client goals and align with target audience needs.
  2. Execution: Implements campaigns proficiently across multiple channels, driving moderate improvements in online presence and engagement.
  3. Measurable Progress: Presents evidence of positive shifts in relevant performance metrics.
  4. Communication: Maintains regular communication, sharing campaign updates and basic insights with clients.

A B-rated digital marketing agency offers satisfactory services, meeting the basic expectations of clients. The agency demonstrates competence in some areas but may lack consistency or innovation:

  1. Basic Strategy: Creates fundamental digital marketing plans that address client objectives, but may not exhibit exceptional creativity.
  2. Execution Capability: Implements campaigns adequately, resulting in modest improvements in online visibility and engagement.
  3. Limited Results: Presents evidence of incremental changes in performance metrics.
  4. Communication: Communicates periodically, sharing basic progress reports without in-depth analysis.

A C-rated digital marketing agency falls below industry standards in terms of service delivery and results. The agency may struggle with various aspects of digital marketing and might need substantial improvement in:

  1. Strategic Insight: Develops basic strategies that may not effectively align with client goals or target audiences.
  2. Execution Challenges: Struggles with consistent and effective campaign implementation, resulting in limited improvements.
  3. Lackluster Results: Demonstrates minimal positive impact on performance metrics.
  4. Communication Issues: Communicates sporadically, often with limited insights and updates.

Ranked: The Best Market Research Agencies in Charlotte

We’ve shortlisted the best ones for you and made it easy to only contact AAA or AA-rated agencies.

However, before you decide to go with anyone I recommend 2 things:

Either use our agency finder above. Use our expertise and let us help you find the ideal agency for you, from our worldwide contact database.

Or, if you are sure you’d like a local agency, set up meetings with the highly-rated agencies on this list, and test them for clear expectations from you/clear customer qualifications, clear onboarding process, clear long-term focused objectives, and clear communication.

And most important, don’t fall for short-term hacks some poor quality agencies try to sell you on.

Look for long-term strategy, protecting your brand and clear timelines.

1. AOC Marketing Research

AOC Marketing Research

Founded Year: 1986

Website: aocresearch.com

Reputation Score: AA

About the agency: AOC Marketing Research is a top market research agency in Charlotte that helps businesses gather data about their customers and competitors to grow their business online. The company will perform surveys, focus groups, and in-depth research to collect information about your target audience’s behavior, interests, demographics, age, gender, and location.

They have a team of marketing researchers who have great experience helping companies collect data and provide insights about their brand products and services. The team will focus on conducting research for companies in different industries and helping them make informed decisions about their marketing goals.

Case Studies: Pending submission

2. L&E Research

L&E Research

Founded Year: 2004

Website: leresearch.com

Reputation Score: AA

About the agency: L&E Research is a leading market research agency in Charlotte that specializes in conducting research about competitors and customers for companies in different industries. They specialize in qualitative research, quantitative research, virtual online research, focus group analysis, and in-depth interviews.

Their experts have great expertise in using cutting-edge technology to conduct in-depth research about your consumers, prospects, and competitors. The company has completed thousands of market research projects for top brands by connecting them with distributors, vendors, competitors, and other professionals in their industry.

Case Studies: Pending submission

3. Accelerant Research

Accelerant Research

Founded Year: 2008

Website: accelerantresearch.com

Reputation Score: AA

About the agency: Accelerant Research is a reputed market research agency in Charlotte, helping companies in different industries make smarter new product development, customer experience, marketing, and communications decisions.

The company provides full-service marketing research insights about your customers, competitors, vendors, distributors, and other professionals in your industry. They have a great reputation for conducting qualitative research, quantitative research, and online insight communities for gathering information about your brand’s products and services.

Their experts will use data processes, surveys, marketing campaigns, multivariate analysis, and focus group facilities to collect data about your brand.

Case Studies: Pending submission

4. Yellow Duck Marketing

Yellow Duck Marketing

Founded Year: 2011

Website: yellowduckmarketing.com

Reputation Score: AA

About the agency: Yellow Duck Marketing is a skilled market research agency in Charlotte that helps businesses learn about the behavior of their target audience, buying practices, and competitors through their market research services.

They have a team of talented researchers who can analyze your customers, consumers, prospects, and buyers by using surveys, questionnaires, feedback, and focus group facilities. The company will assist you in designing marketing strategies, products, and services that resonate with your audience by understanding the age, gender, demographics, and location of your customers.

Their team will develop a long-term marketing campaign to make your business a success online.

Case Studies: Pending submission

5. GMR Marketing

GMR Marketing

Founded Year: 1979

Website: gmrmarketing.com

Reputation Score: AA

About the Agency: GMR Marketing is a market research agency in Charlotte with a dedicated team of professionals who can conduct research about your company, customers, and prospects. They will use different surveys, data processes, questionnaires, feedback, and focus group facilities to gain a deeper understanding of your target audience’s behavior and buying practices.

The company will help you create the best marketing strategies, new products, and services that resonate with your target audience by gathering insights through their marketing research process. Their marketing research team has experienced professionals who will use different tools and strategies for gathering information and making your business stand ahead of the competition.

Case Studies: Pending submission

6. Mindstorm Communications

Mindstorm Communications

Founded Year: 1999

Website: gomindstorm.com

Reputation Score: AA

About the Agency: Mindstorm Communications is a trusted market research agency in Charlotte, conducting research and insights to gain a better understanding of how consumers perceive your brand. They research your past and current consumers to identify buyer habits and other socio-economic insights.

Their expert team uses multiple research methods, including quantitative data, qualitative analysis, consumer habit data, and consumer persona development. The company will also conduct primary research, secondary research, and community surveys to discover more about the behaviors of your customers, buyers, and non-consumers.

Case Studies: Pending submission

7. Union

Union

Founded Year: 2002

Website: union.co

Reputation Score: AA

About the agency: Union is a knowledgeable market research agency in Charlotte that helps businesses conduct research about the buying behaviors of their consumers and prospects to gain insights about their brand. They collect the data and find information through qualitative research and quantitative research methods to craft your targeted marketing strategies.

The team of marketing researchers and analysts will research information about your consumer competitors and buyers to help you launch new products, services, and content that will generate profits. The company can also help optimize marketing strategies and make informed decisions to improve sales and revenue.

Case Studies: Pending submission

8. Ashland Advertising

Ashland Advertising

Founded Year: 2008

Website: ashlandadvertising.com

Reputation Score: AA

About the Agency: Ashland Advertising is a credible market research agency in Charlotte that has experience collecting information about companies in different industries. They will analyze your consumers’ buying habits and conduct research about your target audience behavior and demographics to help you make informed decisions about your marketing objectives.

The company will conduct surveys, feedback, questionnaires, polls, and interviews to understand the behavior of your customers. Their team analyzes the data and helps you create products and services that can spike the interest of both your existing and new customers.

Case Studies: Pending submission

9. Spark Strategic Ideas

Spark Strategic Ideas

Founded Year: 2008

Website: sparkstrategicideas.com

Reputation Score: AA

About the Agency: Spark Strategic Ideas is a popular market research agency in Charlotte, using their expertise to collect invaluable information about your industry competitors and customers. They can help increase your business profitability by analyzing your marketing campaigns and understanding what will make your consumers stick to your brand.

Their experts will analyze the buying patterns to help you make informed decisions about your marketing goals and launch new services and products. The company can handle primary, secondary, and buyer research processes through interviews, calls, and questionnaires.

Case Studies: Pending submission

10. RAC Consulting

RAC Consulting

Founded Year: 1996

Website: racconsulting.net

Reputation Score: AA

About the agency: RAC Consulting is a professional market research agency in Charlotte offering market research services for expanding your company’s reach among your target audience. Their trained staff is proficient at communicating with potential, present, and past customers to build relationships and gather information.

They can conduct surveys to identify effective advertising strategies and measure customer satisfaction in multiple areas. The company provides complete data analysis to discover how to gain new customers and retain a loyal customer base.

Case Studies: Pending submission

Conclusion

Marketing research agencies will help you understand your consumers and non-consumers in a better way to help you create the best marketing campaigns and strategies for increasing your sales and revenue.

Choose a reputed market agency in Charlotte to help gather information about your customers, buyers, and competitors to create the best products and services that can help you gain profits.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is a market research agency?

A market research agency is a specialized organization that has the ability to collect data about your customers, consumers, clients, distributors, and vendors by conducting detailed analysis through surveys, questionnaires, and focus groups.

2. Why do you need a market research agency?

Suppose you want to stand ahead of the competition in your industry and grow your online business. In that case, it is important to collect data and valuable information about your target audience to increase your sales and revenue.

By working with the market research agency, you can easily gather this information, as they will have different analysis methods and techniques to collect information and generate valuable data for helping you create new products and services that resonate with your target customers.

3. What are the benefits of working with the market research agency?

Market research agencies will help you identify the right data about your competitors and target audience to help you make informed decisions about launching new products and services for your online business.

They can understand your business requirements and identify the best strategies and marketing tools for increasing your sales and revenue. These agencies can help you capture the attention of both existing and new customers by helping you devise the right marketing campaigns.

4. How do I choose a market research agency?

When you are looking to work with market research agencies, check their reputation for collecting data about your customers and target audience.

Read the online reviews and testimonials to understand the different methods and techniques they use to collect information. Make sure they have transparent pricing for conducting analysis and gathering data.

5. How much do market research agencies charge?

The cost of market research agencies will depend on your project’s target audience, competitors, and business goals. Most agencies will charge hourly rates based on your project for collecting data about your customers and prospects.