Marketing Research Ch. 3

Marketing Research Process
11 steps (doesn’t have to 11 always):

1. Establish need for marketing research
2. Define the problem
3. Establish research objectives
4. Determine research design
5. Identify information types/sources
6. Determine methods of accessing data
7. Design data collection forms
8. Determine the sample plan and size
9. Collect data
10. Analyze data
11. Prepare and present final research

Step 1: Establish the Need for Marketing Research
When managers try to make decisions with inadequate information, this signals the need for marketing research
When is marketing research not needed?
The information is already available.

The timing is wrong to conduct marketing research…must react now!

Funds are not available for marketing research.

Costs outweigh the value of marketing research.

Step 2: Define the Problem
The problem can be viewed as a statement of decision alternatives. If there are no alternatives, no decision is necessary
most important step in marketing research process
Step 2: Define the Problem; if incorrect, all efforts wasted
Step 3: Establish Research Objectives
Research objectives tell the researcher exactly how to obtain the information necessary to allow the manager to choose between the decision alternatives
research designs
exploratory, descriptive, causal
Exploratory
A form of casual, informal research that is undertaken to learn more about the research problem, learn terms & definitions, or identify research opportunities
Descriptive
Describes the phenomena of interest
Causal
Attempts to uncover what factors cause some event
Step 5: Identify Information Types and Sources
Primary information: information collected specifically for the problem at hand

Secondary information: information already collected

Step 6: Determining Methods of Accessing Data
four main choices of accessing data:
Have a person ask questions

Use computer assisted questioning

Allow respondents to answer questions themselves without computer assistance

Use a combination of the above three methods

Step 7: Design Data Collection Forms
Questionnaire must be worded objectively, clearly, and without bias in order to communicate with respondents
Step 8: Determine Sample Plan and Size
A population consists of the entire group that the researcher wishes to make inferences about based upon information provided by the sample data

A sample is a subset of the population. Sample plans describe how each sample element, or unit, is to be drawn from the total population

The size of the sample determines how accurately your sample results reflect values in the population.

Step 9: Collect Data
Errors in collecting data may be attributed to fieldworkers or respondents and they may be either intentional or unintentional.
What is important is that the researcher knows the sources of these errors and implements controls to minimize them
Step 10: Analyze Data
data analysis with XL Data Analyst; test for differences between different groups
Step 11: Prepare and Present the Final Research Report
only record of the research project for the client; written reports and oral presentations
problems
situations calling for managers to make choices among alternatives. When managers make decisions, they have a problem
defining the problem
managers must first determine what decisions they must make. Secondly, they must ask if they have adequate information already available to them to make the decision; don’t conduct marketing research “just to know something” because marketing research takes times and money to conduct
The Research Objective
Research objectives are totally dependent on the problem but they are different in that they state what the researcher must do
Research objectives state specifically what information must be produced by the researcher so that the manager can choose the correct decision alternative to solve the problem
research objective criteria
Specify from whom the information is to be gathered

Specify what information is needed

Specify the unit of measurement used to gather information

Word questions used to gather the information in the respondents‟ frame of reference”

sources of problems
failure to meet objective or opportunity
failure to meet objective
when a gap exists between what was supposed to happen and what did happen, i.e., failure to meet an objective; control system used to recognize
opportunity
when there is a gap between what did happen and what could have happened; marketing opportunity is area of buyer need or potential interest in which a company can perform profitably; opportunity identification system used to recongize
opportunity identification
a process of monitoring for opportunities; market opportunity analysis (MOA)
Symptoms
changes in the level of some key monitor that measures the achievement of an objective; not the problem but the “signals” that alert us of the problem.

losing money is symptom while what causes us to lose money is the problem

situation analysis
form of exploratory research undertaken to gather background information and data pertinent to the problem area that may be helpful in properly defining the problem decision
request for proposal
or invitation to bid; documents used to alert research firms that a company would like to receive bids or proposals to conduct research
determining cause
symptoms don’t just change and appear; there is cause and you must determine all possible causes before narrowing to all probable causes so nothing is overlooked
decision alternatives
include any marketing action that the marketing manager thinks may resolve the problem
consequences
results of marketing actions
assumption
assertions that certain conditions exist or that reactions will take place if the considered alternatives are implemented
information state
quantity and quality of evidence a manager possesses for each assumption
information gaps
discrepancies between current information levels and the desired level of information at which the manager feels comfortable resolving the problem at hand
Research Objectives
state specifically what information must be produced by the researcher so that the manager can choose the correct decision alternative to solve the problem
hypotheses
statements that are taken for true for the purposes of argument or investigation
construct
abstract idea inferred from specific instances that are thought to be related (memory, likelihood, intent, attitude, etc.)
operational definition
definition of a construct, such as intention to buy or satisfaction, which describes the operations to be carried out in order for the construct to be measured empirically
action standard
pre-designation of some quantity of a measured attribute or characteristic that must be achieved for a research objective in order for a predetermined action to take place
marketing research proposal
conveys to the manager in written form the problem and research objectives and the method that will be employed to collect and analyze the information needed to select the correct decision alternative (including time table and a budget)