One of the most important factors in startups is market research, but sadly, startup teams don’t take it seriously and so they take a lot of hits for it. I would say there are two major reasons for this dismissal of market research:
Something that we see quite often among startup folks is prejudice. They think their idea is going to be successful no matter what. They’ve just talked about their ideas with family and friends whom due to their relation didn’t want to discourage them and maybe even said nice things about it, so they spend months working on their project thinking they have a brilliant idea that everyone loves without knowing their customers and after the launch of the startup, they fail. Whereas with good market research they could solve this problem and offer something in line with the needs of customers.
Even if someone decides to examine the credibility of their ideas and investigate the market, they are not familiar with the principles of doing so. They don’t know how to design a questionnaire or how to talk to people, they don’t know how to determine their target market and often with asking a few questions like ‘if there is an application like this, would you use it’ or ‘are you willing to pay to use such an application?’ and etc. and receiving a positive answer, they think their idea is valid and will be successful based on these wrong questions, then they launch and obviously fail because wrong investigations will definitely be harmful and deceiving.
Based on my experience on different apps, I’ve realized that most of the time the perception of end-users is completely different from what we think. So make sure to take market research seriously and be sure that with the time you save here, your expenses will decrease. For starters, it’s good for you to read these two books: The Lean Startup and The Mom Test. They give you a good perspective and keep you from mistakes you may make in the future.