We are half way through the trip and we are making great progress on our research! When we arrived in Guatemala, although we had previously been on two trips, we did not have a complete understanding of the existing market for, and prevalence of glasses in our target locations. To answer these questions, we have developed a multi-method market research approach to understand glasses around Lake Atitlan.
The first half of the trip we have focused our research on three questions.
First, we want to know the percentage of people who are currently wearing glasses. Thus far we have 4000 observations with around 300 people wearing glasses. We have done observations in five different towns around the lake and in nearly twenty locations, with the instances of glasses ranging from a low of 1.5% to a high of 9% in different locations.
Second, we’re looking into what types of glasses are the most prevalent in our target locations. To answer this question we have developed a detailed method to collect demographic and stylistic data on the glasses we observe. These categories of data include; Male/Female, Age, Shape of glasses, Material of glasses, Color, Sidewall, Design, and Transitions lenses. So far we have recorded data on over 250 people and their glasses.
Third, we’re asking why people choose a particular pair of glasses. This question brings in the qualitative portion of our research, as we have done face to face interviews with over 75 Guatemalans wearing glasses. To understand their preferences we have asked questions about price, style, and satisfaction with their glasses while also collecting all the demographic and stylistic data from our second research question.
The second half of the trip will focus on new methods of collecting data to dive even deeper into our understanding of stylistic preference. We will be using photos to determine the type of glasses people perceive look best on others, and physical frames for people to try on and choose what looks best on themselves. This will happen in conjunction with continued data collection on the instances of glasses, and our demographic and stylistic observations. In this step, we’ll be able to move beyond our observations of what glasses Guatemalans are currently wearing, to understand what they would ideally be wearing. Upon the creation of our business, this knowledge will help us to create a competitive advantage.
We’re also looking to collect business information; we will be interviewing owners and employees of local shops to find out things like the cost of rent, size of stores, income of employees, and overhead expenses.
It has been a great trip here so far, and the great weather is a nice added bonus!