6 Things to Keep in Mind When Doing a Philippines Market Survey

Doing a market survey in the Philippines is both exciting and challenging. You are faced with a diverse set of people and cultures, and they all provide you with infinite possibilities of creating and expanding markets. Depending on your business, you will definitely find yourself with a dynamic range of demographics, and to use their insights to benefit your business can be downright tricky and rewarding at the same time.

But how should you do a Philippines market survey? If you intend to penetrate into the Filipino market to further boost your business, then you should take careful note of a few things in order to succeed. With these things at hand, you are able to come up with business intelligence that is tailor-made to address your needs and find that market you are yearning to conquer once and for all.

These things are:

  1. Find your niche in the country’s 18 regions.

The Philippines is divided into 18 regions (17 administrative and 1 autonomous), and each region is further divided into provinces, cities, municipalities, towns, and barangays. Each region offers a unique set of industry strengths and weaknesses, and you must take this into consideration when targeting the country for your business. By being able to pinpoint where your business can thrive, you can then narrow your survey to that said target audience.

Philippines Regions - 1

Regions of the Philippines - 2

Philippine Region - 3

Philippine Region Map - 4

Region Map in the Philippines - 5

Regions in the Philippines - 6

  1. The dialects can get you lost in translation.

The dialects in the Philippines vary from one another, and there are areas that do not speak the most common dialect, Tagalog. If you are going to establish your business outside Manila, then you would have to work with surveyors who are capable of conversing in the language of your target area, such as Bisaya, Ilocano, Kapampangan, Chabacano, etc.

  • Here are the 13 indigenous languages with at least one million native speakers:
  1. You must be culturally sensitive when asking questions.

When forming your survey questions, it is important that you are able to compose them in such way that they are not offensive towards the audience’s culture and traditions. These include being mindful of community and religious practices, beliefs towards food, certain items, and other behaviours, as well as dressing up properly. If the people find your outfit offensive, then they will not speak to you.

Respect Philippine Culture

  1. Be graphic.

Filipinos are very animated people. While they enjoy talking, they also like showcasing their ideas through graphic representations. You may want to do the same as well when delivering your survey questions by using objects that they can relate to (visual aids, actual objects), so that you are able to extract that data that you need from them.

Show your point of view

  1. How responsive is your audience?

Some communities are more comfortable engaging in surveys through group discussions, while there are those who entertain individual interviews instead. In this light, you have to determine the best method of surveying your market. You may go for focus group discussions with key audiences to get a status quo, then individual interviews with key informants and stakeholders.


  1. Be aware of power relations.

Filipino communities have intricate power relations, and this is something you have to keep in mind. When conducting surveys, you have to know who decides on issues, who answers questions, and who has the influence over a majority. You may want to get their answers first as these may already serve as key data and save you from doing unnecessary consultations with audiences that do not hold the deciding power.

Heart to Heart Talk

So, are you all set for your Philippines market survey? Feel free to contact us to get started or learn from our tips.


Some Image and Screenshot Source: Wikipedia

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