<This series of posts is aimed at the current RADIUS Trampoline cohort – but will be of use to anyone learning to do secondary market research. Click on the table of contents to go to the first post.>
Wouldn't it be wonderful if someone else gathered all the data for you? And even better if they added a layer of analysis, complete with forecasts and recommendations?
Sadly, in most cases, such time- and labour-saving work isn’t done for free. Organizations such as MINTEL and Euromonitor collect and analyze data that can be valuable for market research, but they understand that value and charge accordingly: private research reports tend to be very expensive – even for many library budgets.
Fortunately, a few private researchers make substantial amounts of their content freely available, and others may have completed special projects for governments or industry associations, who may have then published the results on their sites.
For example, Ipsos, a well-known, public opinion polling company, provides much of its valuable survey results without charge. Start with the Ipsos Canada site, but be sure to check out their US, Global and other country pages in case studies done in other regions prove relevant to Canada.
- Search the Ipsos site, with a limit to News & Polls. Once you find a study that seems interesting, (e.g., Half (50%) of Canadians `Strongly Agree' that Nature is Important For Their Family's Well-Being), scroll to the bottom and look for links to Detailed Tables. These will usually give you the demographic breakdown of responses to each question in the survey.
Insights West is more focused on Western Canada (esp. BC) and doesn't provide the sorts of detailed tables that Ipsos does, but it’s still worth checking. With a bit of digging, you’ll find sources such as this Backgrounder to the MEC 2013 Activity Study.
Finally, many research firms publish excerpts of their reports in their social media posts. Start with my blog post On gleaning data and insights from research firm sites, but also look for relevant Facebook pages for such firms.
This is my shortest post for a good reason: given the nature of your goals, I suspect that most relevant private research firm reports and data will have been quoted extensively on the sites of the association, research institute, and government agency sites we've already discussed.
In fact, many of those organizations may have even commissioned the research and published the entire resulting reports on their sites. If you haven't done so already, go explore my Governments, Associations, and Academics posts to find such sites and reports.
We're almost done! Our last "likely publisher" category is >> News
Business & Economics Librarian