Marketing Research Assignment


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Marketing Research Assignment

  1. 1. MARKETING RESEARCH higher diploma assignment By: MAHA H
  2. 2. Table of Topic Page no1. Marketing Research and its purpose 32. Scanning the environment 43. Marketing Research Process to achieve objectives 54. Primary data 6  Questionnaires  Interviews  Focus groups  Observation5. Secondary data 9  Internal sources of information  External sources of information6. Qualitative and Quantitative information 117. References 12 2
  3. 3. Market Research and Marketing Research are often confusedwith each other. Market Research is simply the research done into a specific market and it is a verynarrow concept .Marketing Research on the other hand is much broader and not only includes marketresearch, but also areas such as research into new products, modes of distribution i.e researching thewhole of a companys marketing process .Marketing research is a systematic gathering, recording and analyzing the data that links the consumer,customer, and public to the marketer through the information that is used to identify and define marketingopportunities and problems i.e generating, refining and evaluating the marketing actions, monitoring themarketing performance, and understanding marketing as a process. Marketing research also specifies theinformation that is required to address issues and designing methods for the data managing, implementingthe collection process of data, analyzing it and thus communicating the findings and the suggestions.Purpose of Marketing ResearchIt can help a business do one or more of the following such as:  Gain a more detailed understanding of the consumers needs – it can help the firms to discover consumers opinions on a huge range of issues such as prices of the product, packaging, recent advertising campaigns etc.  Reduce the risk of product/business failure - there is no guarantee that any new idea will be a commercial success, but an accurate and up to date information of the market can help a business to make informed decisions i.e. leading to products that consumers want sufficiently in order to achieve commercial success.  Forecast future trends - marketing research does not only provide information of the current state of the market but it can also be used to anticipate the future customer needs so that the firms can then make necessary adjustments to their product portfolios and the levels of output in order to remain successful. 3
  4. 4. Scanning the environmentEnvironmental scanning is the acquisition and the use of information about events, trends, andrelationships in an organizations external environment, the information of which would assist themanagement to plan the organizations future course of action. Organizations scan the environment tounderstand about the external forces of change so that they may develop effective responses which maysecure or improve their position in the future. They scan to avoid surprises, to identify threats andopportunities, to gain competitive advantage, and to improve long-term and short-term planning. Thedegree to which an organizations ability to adapt to its outside environment is dependent is aboutknowing and interpreting the external changes that are taking place. Therefore, environmental scanningconstitutes a primary mode of organizational learning and it may also include both looking at information(viewing) and looking for information (searching). It could range from a casual conversation at the lunchtable to a formal market research program.Scanning is influenced by external factors such as environmental turbulence, resource dependency andorganizational factors such as the nature of the business and the strategy pursued information factors (theavailability and quality of information) and personal factors (scanners knowledge or cognitive style).Thus, the research on scanning investigates the effect of situational dimensions, organizational strategies,information needs, and personal traits on scanning behavior. Figure 1:Scanning is influenced by the external factors like environmental turbulence, resource dependency andorganizational factors like the nature of the business and the strategy pursued, information factors like theavailability and quality of information and personal factors like the scanners knowledge or cognitivestyle. Thus, the research on scanning investigates the effect of situational dimensions, organizationalstrategies, information needs, and personal traits on scanning behavior (as shown in Figure 1 and 2). 4
  5. 5. Figure 2:Every company has to follow a series of steps of the Marketing Research Process in order to achieveits objectives.Defining the market problem – the problem identified should be clear and precise. 5
  6. 6. Developing an approach – the approach developed or designed should be nearly flawless and shouldbe able to solve the identified problem.Developing an actual research design – it should be designed very carefully with expertise, time andthought as it is the most encompassing step of the research process.Marketing research can be classified into:  Exploratory research - The purpose of it is to reach a better understanding of the research problem.  Descriptive research - As the name suggests, it is concerned with describing market and marketing mix characteristics.  Causal research – it deals with the questions when the researcher wants to know why a change in one variable brings about a change in another.Data collection – this step involves all the field related work i.e. the information is gathered. E.g. throughquestionnaires, observation, interviews etc.Data preparation and analysis – in this step all the data is collected and is systematically organizedso that it can easily be interpreted and analyzed by the decision makers.Report preparation and presentation – This is the final step of the marketing research process; the datafindings and the information should be reported and presented in such a way that the decision makers caneasily make use of it to make fruitful decisions.The data collected can be classified into: Primary data – It is also known as field research and it collects the first hand data involving the direct contact with the potential or existing customers. This kind of data can be collected by using methods such as interviews, questionnaires etc. The key point is that the data which the company collects in the research is unique to the firm and no one else can have access to it until it is published. The data is always collected by choosing a sample and its size of the population to ask. Sample and sample size - Samples can random or non random. Random samples can either be simple non-random or multi-random (stratified). Non random samples may include quotas, selective or judgmental methods. With random samples it is possible to be more sophisticated in the analysis by using parametric methods of analysis or else project results with greater statistical reliability. With 6
  7. 7. non random sampling techniques, descriptive statistics are more appropriate. Another important decision is the sample size, the larger the sample size and more difficult it is to obtain i.e. if randomly chosen the higher the cost will be whereas, quota sampling might be cheaper.Some of the main methods of primary data collection may include: Questionnaires Interviews Focus groups Observation QuestionnairesA questionnaire is a set of questions to be answered by the respondents as a means of collecting of data. Itusually takes the written form. The questions asked in a questionnaire can either be close ended or openended or both. InterviewsInterviewing is a method that is primarily used to gain an understanding of the underlying reasons andmotivations of people’s attitudes, preferences or behavior. Interviews usually consist of the interviewer(the person asking the questions) and an interviewee (a person answering the questions).The interviewscan be based on either be personal i.e. one-to-one basis or in a group. They can be conducted at work, athome, in the street or in a shopping centre, or some other agreed location. Interviews can be conductedface to face or over the telephone etc. 7
  8. 8. Focus groupsThey are basically the discussions conducted by a researcher with a group of respondents who areconsidered to be representative for the target market. These meetings are usually held in an informalsetting and are moderated by the researcher and the sessions are videotaped.Focus groups is perhaps an ideal technique available in terms of costs and time to test new ideas andconcepts towards brands and products in order to study customers response to creative media such asadvertisements and packaging design or to detect trends in consumers aspect and perception. One of theimportant benefits of focus groups is the presence of several respondents in the same time, providing acertain synergy. Disadvantages may refer mainly to the costs that maybe involved or the scarcity of goodprofessionals to conduct the interviews and discussions. Observation It involves recording the behavioral patterns of people, objects and events in a systematic manner.Few of the observational methods may be: Structured or unstructured - structured observation is where the researcher specifies in detail what is to be observed and how the measurements are to be recorded. In unstructured observation, the researcher monitors all aspects of the phenomenon that seem relevant. Disguised or undisguised - In disguised observation the respondents are unaware that they are being observed and thus they behave naturally. In undisguised observation the respondents are aware that they are being observed. Natural or contrived – in natural observation involves observing the behavior as it takes place in the environment. In contrived observation, the respondents behavior is observed in an artificial environment. Personal – In this kind of observation a researcher observes actual behavior as it occurs. 8
  9. 9. Secondary dataIt is also known as desk research. It is the data which has already been collected by individuals oragencies for purposes other than those of our particular research study. As secondary data is alreadyavailable it is entirely appropriate and wholly adequate to draw conclusions in order to answer thequestions or to solve the problem. It is far cheaper to collect secondary data than to collect primary data.For same level of the research budget at times a thorough examination of secondary sources can yield agreat deal of more information than the primary data collection process.The data is collected either by the: Internal sources of information – a lot of information may already be available readily n cheaply from the firms own records. Some of the examples of the internal sources may include: Sales department–of every organization may collect information in the course of their everyday operations. It provides information from the sales records, pricing data, customer records, sales reports etc. Finance department– may provide detailed information on costs of manufacturing products or providing services and marketing each of its products and product lines.. Transport data: Most of the companies keep records relating to their transport operations they can be used to determine the most profitable routes, and loads, as well as the most cost effective routing patterns. Also, may enable the enterprise to perform trade-off analysis and thereby establish whether it makes economic sense to own or hire vehicles, or the point at which a balance of the two gives the best financial outcome. 9
  10. 10. Storage data: It consists of the rate of stock turn, stock handling costs, also assessing the efficiency of certain marketing operations and of the marketing system as a whole. Used to use information that it offers in order to calculate profitability. External sources of information – these are the sources of information obtained from outside the company. These sources may be varied and tend to depend on the type of the product that is being researched. This type of data is inevitably of a general nature as it has been gathered for some purpose other than research that is being undertaken. Some examples of the external sources may include: Government statistics – may provide detailed general information about things such as: · Population censuses · Social surveys, family expenditure surveys · Import/export statistics · Production statistics · Agricultural statistics Trade associations- of an industry may provide information about that industry. It may differ widely in the extent of their data collection and information dissemination activities. However, it is worth checking with them to decide what they publish. Commercial services – they are the published market research reports and other publications that are available from a wide range of organizations which charge for their information. Marketers are interested in media statistics and consumer information which can be obtained from large scale consumer panels. National and international institutions - Bank economic reviews, university research reports, journals and articles are all useful sources of information and the international agencies such as World Bank, IMF, IFAD, UNDP etc produce a plethora of secondary data which can prove extremely useful to the marketing researcher.The data that is collected from both the primary data or secondary data methods stated above can beclassified into: 01
  11. 11. Qualitative information – it refers to the conditions or information that can at most be onlypartially enumerated. For example: descriptions of beliefs and cultural practices etc. Qualitativemethods capture the contextual setting associated with the information or the situations affectingpeople’s lives. For example it can be drawn from n-depth interviews, focus group discussions,casual meetings etc. Quantitative information - it refers to the data or information that can be enumerated. Quantitative information is gathered to summarize the experience of large groups of people, to make comparisons between groups, and to track changes among them over time. Quantitative information can be expressed in numbers. For example it can be drawn from, Service statistics, Surveys, census etc. 00
  12. 12. References: Borrington and Peter Stimpson 1999, IGCSE Business Studies, John Murray Ltd, UnitedKingdom. 02