What methods do you consider most appropriate for conducting marketing research for a small business in the fashion industry?
To a degree it depends on whether the small business is a clothing designer marketing to retail outlets, a retail outlet selling a variety of brands, or a designer selling directly to the public. B2B marketing is quite different from marketing to consumers, and involves mainly researching what retail outlet buyers want rather than consumer behavior. If you are running a retail outlet, whatever it sells, one good technique to get a feel of local walk or drive-by traffic is to do surveys, perhaps offering discount coupons for completion, by hiring individuals to stand nearby the store and ask passers-by to answer questions. Also, offer surveys on your website, with incentives for people to complete the surveys. Also offer incentives for Facebook "likes" and then analyze the attributes of people who submit those "likes".