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How to do market research / test idea if no established market?

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Idea threads


Bronze Contributor
Speedway Pass
Aug 9, 2007
In MJ's book, one of his points is if you are annoyed by something / wish something existed / wished it was easier, most likely other people do too.

I wish there were energy efficient, green homes available in any price range. In my city, most are $750k+ and only available to those who can afford them. Several of my friends have bought homes recently and complained that for $450k and under the only options in good neighborhoods are 80-100 year old homes that are completed inefficient.

I've wanted an efficient home as well and have the know how, contacts and industry connections to start building them. What I don't know is how to test the market? I live in the Midwest and tend to associated with other like-minded people. I know my friends would like them, but what about the masses (i.e. Joe six pack). I'm not going to build a scalable business selling homes to only hipsters. How can I figure out if there is a market for these types of homes, other than just asking around?

One thought I had was to create a free "Why to buy an energy efficient home" seminar, market it through my industry contacts and see if people show up. I could ask them to fill out a questionnaire and if people come, there might be my first ready and willing buyers right there.

How would you research this market?

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Silver Contributor
Read Fastlane!
Speedway Pass
Mar 18, 2011
There is already an established market...the problem is the price.

In my city, most are $750k+ and only available to those who can afford them

Joe six pack, especially in the mid-west, really doesn't care if its green or not. Cheap is where its at. This is why they don't sell them to Joe blow currently and why they sell them to educated upper income people. They cost much more is the main reason. Do you have people in your market that can pay more for this type of home, if so great, then find out WILL they pay more for this home. Demographics are important.

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