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How FP Journe created a niche market without market research

Is there any better market research than receiving customer requests for a product that doesn’t exist yet ?
I’ve explained in other articles that an alternative way to do market research is to test the traction for an idea directly on the market (provided of course that it remains affordable).

I recently stumbled upon an interesting example in the luxury watch sector.
François-Paul Journe is an independent watchmaker who launched his brand in the 1990’s. His first series of 20 watches were actually sold by subscription to collectors around the world.
All watches are made in very limited series and usually only a handful pieces are made of each model every year. FP Journe’s production methods command long waiting times, which can be frustrating for some customers. This customer pain and the rarity of some models lead therefore to collector buying watches on the second-hand market (from private collectors, through auction houses).

Serious collectors are of course keen on acquiring pieces that are flawless and complete (with box and papers). In the video below François-Paul Journe explains that the idea of the patrimony services came with the request of one customer who wanted to purchase a watch at an auction and asked FP Journe to do it on his behalf and to set the watch back to new conditions.

The results of this new service are summed here and seems to be quite promising.
This proves that you can sometimes avoid carrying out market research and launch a profitable line of new services solely based on real customers’ requests.


Image : shutterstock

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Pierre-Nicolas est Docteur en Marketing et dirige l'agence d'études de marché IntoTheMinds. Ses domaines de prédilection sont le BigData l'e-commerce, le commerce de proximité, l'HoReCa et la logistique. Il est également chercheur en marketing à l'Université Libre de Bruxelles et sert de coach et formateur à plusieurs organisations et institutions publiques. Il peut être contacté par email, Linkedin ou par téléphone (+32 486 42 79 42)

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